“Readers Need an Emotional Tug-of-War…Tension” by Joan Y. Edwards
Tug on the heart strings of your reader. The reader must want the main character to win as desperately as your character does. You want the reader to feel the tension your character feels.
Show your characters tugging with all kinds of emotions. Happy ones. Sad ones. Fearful ones. Pull your reader this way and that way. Don’t stay stuck on the same emotion. Don’t always have the character win. Show his rope of life pulling him so strongly that he tumbles and falls several times in your story. Add tension to your story.
Mesmerize your reader throughout the whole story…from the first chapter through the last chapter. Keep your readers there from the beginning to the finish line.
Donald Maass in a workshop at the Pike’s Peak Writer’s Conference said you must have tension in your story. The dialogue and the descriptions have to show both sides of the picture. Show how the characters are pulled toward believing they can get the job or their goal and on the other hand and doubting they can get any job or can’t reach their goal because of the way they fouled it up last time.
Inside our heads every day we have these opposite points of view. We have at least 50,000 thoughts a day. So do the characters in your story. Show they’re human. Share their thoughts. Their thoughts depict their emotions.
Give your character one big strength and one big weakness, or give them one small strength and show its growth through your story. Our humanity is what we have in common with other people. Each of us has strengths and weaknesses.
Good luck with your writing!
“Backstory’s Emotional Weight” by Darcy Pattison
“Creating Emotional Conflict and Tension in a Romance Novel” by Dummies.comhttp://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/creating-emotional-conflict-and-tension-in-a-roman.html
“Creative Writing: Crafting Characters with Emotional Appeal in Mind” by Lenin Nair http://cutewriting.blogspot.com/2008/09/creative-writing-crafting-characters.html
1. The Fire in Fiction: Passion, Purpose and Techniques to Make Your Novel Great by Donald Maass.
2. Make a Scene: Crafting a Powerful Story One Scene at a Time (Paperback) Jordan Rosenfeld http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1582974799/ref=oss_product
3. Writer’s Guide to Character Traits (Paperback) by Dr. Linda Edelstein:
4. Writing for Emotional Impact (Paperback) by Karl Iglesias:
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Joan Y. Edwards
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Revised January 4, 2023