Keeping the Middle Moving––Part VI

Choose your scenes wisely. But which to choose? There are certain types of scenes that, if utilized, can ramp up your action, create tension, and keep your middle from bogging down. There is one scene type you won’t want to use. We’ll cover that next week. Use the chase, the fight, and the romance, to help keep the middle moving. Click to Tweet #keepmiddlemoving #amwriting

The Chase Scene

Necessary elements include:

  1. The chased––someone needs to be chased. It could be your POV character, or their nemesis. If it’s the POV character, how do they feel about the chase? What is their fear?
  2. The chaser––someone is after someone else. Why? What motivation can you bring to the scene? If it’s the POV character after someone, the motivation will be even more important.
  3. A narrow margin of escape––make it very difficult for the POV character. If they’re chased, they barely get away, and their relief is palpable. If they’re the one doing the chasing, their frustration should be evident.
  4. A view of character emotion––ramp up the tension by delineating POV character thoughts, by using action, by the body language of characters involved in the chase.

The Fight Scene


  1. The fighters
  2. A closed environment
  3. An emotional component

Things to consider:

  1. Be clear on the motives of both your POV character and the one they’re fighting.
  2. Clearly picture the environment where the fight takes place. Is it day, or night? Is it in a small room, or a whole house? If outside, how is the fight contained?
  3. Insert the POV character’s feelings even as the action is occurring. Did they initiate the fight? Did someone attack them?

The Romantic Scene

Romance is a great way to create and sustain tension in scenes. Something should always be happening. External forces can be against the two lovers, or it can be internal conflict on the part of the POV character. The goal is to interrupt the process of them growing closer, to keep the middle moving. A kiss could still be utilized in the scene––especially if it interrupts and creates more emotional tension.

  1. Employ tension and conflict in every romantic situation.
  2. In writing the scene, look for internal conflicts in the POV character, and anything external that could also become an obstacle. Decide what will work best for you.
  3. Apply the fear factor. The POV character needs to be afraid of something. Is it emotional intimacy? Is it a secret in their past? Is it fear they’ll get carried away? Or their partner?

Think of the individual scenes you’ll need to create tension. Using different kinds of scenes ensures your middle won’t sag. Click to Tweet #amwriting #keepmiddlemoving

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