Writers are a lot like fly fishermen. They spend a lot of time trying to create something to hook the reader (or fish) and pull them in.
Fly fishermen can spend days trying to create the perfect lure, the one that will catch that elusive fish in the pond. They get their inspiration from nature. That’s why some lures resemble insects.
As writer’s we don’t have too far to go to get help with our own writing. Just as the fly fisherman looks to the world around him, we can look to the books we love. What did that author do that pulled you in and how can you take that trick and make it your own?
Because a hook is so unique, it is often the first piece of the puzzle in developing a writer’s voice.
If you are going to open by introducing a character, make him charismatic, someone the reader will be drawn to and want to spend more time with.
- Shock the reader with a first scene that ends in a way that the reader didn’t expect and can’t put down.
- Ask a question the reader will stay up late to find the answer.
- Hook the reader fast. If you can’t hook the reader by that first scene, do it at least by the end of that first chapter.
This should be a great week for writing, as long as you have air conditioning.
What have I been reading? – Just finished Miss Me When I’m Gone by Emily Arsenault. It was an arc I won from Librarything recently so will have a review on there and Goodreads soon. It is the story of two women, friends from college. One a successful author working on her second book when she falls down the stairs of a library after a book signing. Turns out it wasn’t an accident. Her first book was called Tammyland. All about the women of Nashville and country music but mostly about Tammy Wynette and the similarities between her and the fictional author’s mother who had been killed when the fictional author was a child. The protagonist of the story is a pregnant journalist and is asked to be her friend’s literary executor to finish the second book. She feels compelled to complete the project before she delivers, knowing she won’t have time after the baby is born. While questioning the same people her friend interviewed, notebooks and a couple laptops are stolen and though she knows she may be asking questions of a murderer, she continues. The first book I’ve read by this author and I would read more.
How is your writing project going and what have you been reading lately?