Sticking With Story

This article caught my eye. The writer needs to stick to the story at hand in a manuscript and not let it get bogged down with to much backstory and extra tidbits that slow the story down.

Any novelist who has spent much time in the fiction-writing world has probably heard the term “sagging middle.” Sags develop when a story loses momentum and begins to meander or bog down. I’m of the opinion that the issue usually isn’t so much a single sag as a number of sags, clustered or scattered throughout.

Envision a rope that connects the story to the reader. As long as the rope is taut, the story is pulling the reader ever onward by the tension in the connection. Once the tension sags, the reader is no longer moving forward and may become bored or confused and close the book. Yikes!

While it is important to flesh out characters, establish their motivations, and reveal their back-stories, etc., a writer cannot afford a chapter or even a scene devoted solely to any of those causes. A novelist must perform the miracle of developing characters in the midst of the action directly pertinent to the story at hand. Digression, hopping off on rabbit trails, or allowing the story to meander, risks losing the reader. Click here to read more.

Donna

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Posted on August 15, 2014, in Research, Writing Tips. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Sticking With Story.

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