Writing Scintillating Scenes––Part XII

They key to writing a page-turner novel is creating scintillating scenes––they shine, they’re dazzling, unforgettable, and brilliant. Writing sparkling scenes make the story something the reader can’t put down and will read long into the night. Click to Tweet #amwriting #scintillatingscenes We wrap this up with another scene model: reading scenes in context.

Reading Scenes in Context

How do you choose where to enter the story or scene? Scenes make up a timeline for the story, a series of events that create a full story. If the story is a timeline, where does this scene fit in that line? Why begin at this particular point? For those of you pantsers out there, this will still help you in revisions when you tweak your manuscript and work to make each scene drive the story along.

Ask yourself what your story does and how does it do it? What are the best things you like about your story? For my first novel, “Meghan’s Choice,” I love the two-layer choice she needs to make. And I love action and romance in historical settings. Think about other possible choices for scenes––how different would that make the story?

What creates the story’s pulse? What are the elements that seem most important to create the pull through your story, and it’s “ignition?” Is this story worth telling? Is it urgent? How can you make it vital, impressing, and imperative?

Examine your dialogue. Especially notice the different ways your characters speak. Make each character have some sort of distinctive way of speaking. In my novel, the cowboy frequently drops subjects until he becomes more comfortable with other characters. A couple of other characters have different dialects or manners of speaking. Are there beats to break up long stretches of dialogue? These beats provide rest or increase tension.

And finally, plot summary. Have you written a short version of your story, like a back-cover blurb, to draw readers to want to purchase your book? Another reason to know your story well, is the elevator pitch. Can you summarize your story in two to three sentences? Think about those things as you analyze your scenes. Would this scene help with the blurb or the elevator pitch?

In conclusion, learning to write and edit your scenes to make them scintillating will in turn create a compelling, page-turning, reader favorite. That’s the goal. Click to Tweet #amwriting #scintillatingscenes

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