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September 19, 2011


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Kari Marie White

Excellent points. I love that quote. Interestingly enough, to keep my pace when I write, I have to stop writing while I still know what happens next. I keep my momentum that way - and so does the story.

Donna Cummings

Kari Marie, I like the idea of stopping your writing while you still know what happens next. I might give that a try -- it sounds like it would make it easier to start back up the next time. Which would reduce the procrastination too!

Mary Elizabeth

Good ideas! I'd not heard of the party analogy before, but it sure explains the page turners. I also hadn't considered the "stop writing while you still know what's going to happen" trick to be an aid to pacing, but it makes total sense. Great post and comments!

Donna Cummings

Mary Elizabeth, thanks for the compliments on my post. I try to keep the party thing in mind while writing my stories, and I can't wait to use the "stop writing" suggestion next time I open the manuscript. Thanks for stopping by!


It is a great technique to capture the reader's interest early on.

I'm reading a SciFi now where in the first chapter the hero wakes up to find himself shackled to a bed in a sinister hospital and having no memory of how he got there.

He escapes and the author spends the next few chapters allowing his hero to recover pieces of memory to reveal the horror of his true situation.

It all expands into a ten book series (Chronicles of Amber) and I'm on book 2 now, but the pace and my interest is starting to ebb, so there had better be some new boosters soon to keep me reading!

This is sort of a party within a party which may also be within a larger party still.

I think I see glimpses that the global party is starting to bore me though.

Like you said Donna, best to keep it simple. Make your point without too many complications and get out. LOL

Donna Cummings

Q, it sounds like a great setup for a story. But I agree with your "party within a party" analogy -- it may be dragging on too long. LOL

Sometimes I think writers can forget that readers' brains move fast, so we give more detail than is necessary, thinking we won't be clear otherwise. But then it can bog down the story, and readers will get bored. So it's best to keep the reader guessing, and excited, about what's next.

I'll have to make sure I do that now!

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