- a description (what’s going to happen in the scene)
- a goal for the POV character
- the conflict that happens in the scene that prevents the character from achieving their goal
- kick it up a notch. After the conflict, give the character a disaster so they can’t achieve their goal
- a scene ending (something to make the reader want to keep reading)
The above is loosely taken from Scene and Structure by Bickham.
When I first started writing, my characters would meander through scenes, with no real goal and no exciting ending to the scenes. Following the above approach will entice readers to want to read more.
I recently heard that you should close up a loose end and open another question with the reader for most scenes. That makes the reader feel as though they are learning and progressing, but since they don’t have an answer to the story yet, they’ll keep reading.
Leave a comment and let me know if this works for you!
Filed under: Writing Tip on May 12th, 2010