Thursday, January 20, 2011

DON'T FORGET ... BEWARE OF POT HOLES AND LEAVE THAT CLIFFHANGER!

Day three of editing reminds of the next step in the editing process.

After you finish taking care of the grammar and punctation nightmares, you are now left with scanning your ms for the infamous pot holes.

Beware! This can ruin a fantastic story. As your read through your first edit look for these in your ms. Make sure you round off every plot twist and thread. Of course, we all love the cliff hanger, but make sure you follow it though in your story. Only leave a few questions unanswered by the end of your book.

You want your readers to crave for more, but you don't want them upset and frustrated. If you leave too many unanswered questions, they will be.

Now for the cliffhanger... Oh, man do I love a good cliffhanger. We all want to write a book where the reader is so tired by the end of a chapter ten they still must turn that page! Make them loose a few extra hours of sleep. Make your story worth it.

Each chapter should end with tension and intrigue. Build it up so the reader's curiosity wills them to go on to the next chapter.

If you manage to create this in your writing, your novel will be on everyone's reading list. Remember this is what we are all striving to achieve. The choices are endless. Write a novel that will catapult yours above the other thousands of books out there.

Good luck as you edit. I hope this helps you in your editing process. I am off to finish my final fifty pages of editing.

Thanks for all your support and cheers. I should make my goal and have a strong contender for ABNA.

Tomorrow I'll have some suggestions for that final polish on your ms. Until then have a great day!

19 comments:

  1. Great advice. best of luck during this last stretch!

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  2. Thanks for the editing advice! I agree, cliffhangers can be great, so long as there aren't too many questions left unanswered.

    Go, go, go!

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  3. Good advice. Unanswered questions is the kiss of death. Most readers will be so angry with you that they won't buy anything else. Cliffhanger art is a serious subject that we must pass with flying colors, don't forget the parachute.
    Nancy
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

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  4. Ah yes, a good cliffhanger really is the key! You're almost there, hang in there!

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  5. Great advice! Dan Brown is the master of cliffhangers!

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  6. Really sound advice, Michael. Something that Dean R. Koontz taught in his book, WRITING POPULAR FICTION, is that the cliff hangers should always grow more tense, more threatening with each passing chapter, heightening the suspense for the great climatic showdown. Good luck with your editing and pitching. (I think I threw my arm out on my pitch!) LOL.

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  7. More great advice - thanks! Good luck in ABNA!

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  8. I'm usually good about continuity, but worry that my cliff hangers aren't very thrilling. Everybody has they're own strengths.

    Hope you do great with ABNA. I'll be rooting for you over the internet :)

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  9. Good advice! I hate fixing plot holes!! Give me a sword to slash my way through my ms and I'm happy - but I hate fixing plot holes!

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  10. Sounds like you're in the home stretch. Good luck with ABNA!

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  11. great advice Mike and good luck am glad you are almost done. You deserve to be pampered after all of that editing.

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  12. It is so very cool that you're giving this advice fresh---right as you're experiencing it! Bravo to you for staying on target with your goals. ABNA here you come!

    I see you beat me to my award post! You are extremely stylish, sir and deserve it...as a matter of fact I see you've already won it! Well, you know what? You make me smile all the time too, so I hereby award you with the Putting Smiles On Faces Award too. :)

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  13. Well, if you had 50 pages left 14 hours ago, I'm sure you're done now. Congrats!
    erica

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  14. Sounds like you're going strong. Hope you didn't find too many potholes in your wip. Can't wait to read it when it's published ;)

    Rach

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  15. Hi! I'm dropping in from Nicki's blog. Congrats on your award. I'm presently editing my ms and enjoyed your tips. Thanks! Am following you now.

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  16. Great advice,thank you...and thanks for sparing the time in your own editing along the way, it's a real help. Best of luck with your wip.

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  17. There was a time I think I was better at the cliffhanger... I need to try to do more of this... In terms of holes though... I have the opposite problem... I include too much minutae...

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  18. More great advice Michael. Thank you.

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  19. Great reminder. Darn plot holes always sneaking in there too!

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