All you need to do is enter a bookstore and ask for a fiction book or type fiction as a hashtag on social media and you’d see that there’s a lot of them. In today’s unbelievably competitive industry, how can you make your fiction the best?
How can you make you reader addicted to your story? Victoria Mixon has the answers!
Secret #1 Unforgettable Character
The most fundamental truism of fiction is that all great plot grows out of character.
You can design any type of plot you like. However, if it’s not grounded in the character of your protagonist, it will be nothing but a mish-mash of events from which the reader can disengage at any time and walk away.
On the other hand, you can design almost no plot at all, and if it’s grown entirely from the character of your protagonist, the reader will not only be addicted to your work, they’ll convince all their friends and relatives to become addicted as well.
How did James Bond become a cultural icon, although his plots are repetitive and he must frequently be rescued by a young woman he’s just met?
Because Bond is an unforgettable character from which his plot grows.
This means that character is where we always start.
So how do we make this character unforgettable? That work is based upon the character’s conflicting internal needs. These needs must be internal or they won’t be powerful enough to fuel an entire novel. They must conflict, or there won’t be any climax to this story.
Secret #2 Inescapable Plot
Now what is this unforgettable character going to do?
A story—short fiction or novel—is, at its most fundamental, simply an opportunity for the reader to spend time with your unforgettable character. To make friends with them. To bond. To allow this character to become a part of their life.
This means you must design a plot that gives the freest possible reins to the protagonist’s character—exploring it, exposing it, delving into it to reveal its most intriguing and hidden facets.
A plot that hooks them quickly, takes them for a thrilling whirl, then throws them off a cliff.
Secret #3 Mesmerizing Prose
Finally there is the writing of this character-grown plot.
How do you turn a brilliant, well-developed idea into a novel of some 70,000-100,000 words—a novel that the reader can’t forget, can’t escape, can hardly put down even for a minute? Because 70,000-100,000 are a whole lot of words. And the reader has a life to live.fi
How do you write a novel that’s mesmerizing? One to which the reader is addicted?
You’ll hear a lot in the writing community these days about how to make time to write, how to write faster and more efficiently, how to get your manuscript finished. This advice is mostly about time management, on the assumption that your life is not set up for endless hours in front of the keyboard. However, focusing upon time management misses a crucial element of writing: you write because you love to.
Truly, if writing is not the one thing you love to do above all else, then go find out what is and do that. Life is too short for wasting on doing things you don’t love.
And if writing is the one thing you love to do above all else, then you don’t need time management. You need stamina. You need to stay in touch with your passion. You need, especially, to know what you’re doing.