I’ve been reading and working my way through the next five chapters of the reference book by Noah Lukeman. Hooks, Subtlety, Tone, Focus, and Setting. You are all thrilled to hear this, to be sure.
Hooks. Simply put: make the reader want to return for more.
Subtlety. Don’t show then tell, and don’t state the obvious. Readers aren’t morons. Okay, some readers are morons, but go ahead and assume that the readers who pick up your novel get it.
Tone. Pretend that the reader is your parent and this will be what you hear in your head: Don’t take that tone with me, young lady. The reader doesn’t want 300 pages of sarcastic, overly formal, or soppy tones. Find a balance that fits your story and stick with it. (Easier said than done.)
Focus. Don’t wander too far off the beaten path and lose your reader. Stay on track.
Setting. Think small scale. Details. Put yourself in the scene and snatch the best of your senses. Smell. Sound. These details will make the scene seem real to the reader. This is an integral part of the story– my story, at least. Should I choose to relocate my protagonist to New York City or LA , I would need to create an entirely different storyline. You just don’t find clusters of mischievous humming dragonflies and a turtle and a hare who run a coffee shop when you wander about NYC.
Tonight’s agenda: this exercise at the end of the setting chapter. Take a scene you’ve written and transplant it to another setting. Could be interesting…
Would be more interesting if I could have a glass of wine while tapping on my keyboard. Soon…