Today I put forth for your consideration Conflict, Action & Suspense: How to pull readers in and carry them along with dramatic, powerful storytelling by William Noble. This is another book in The Elements of Fiction Writing series put out by Writer’s Digest. Unfortunately, I could not find this resource on the Writer’s Digest site (the link above is an affiliate link to Amazon), but it’s one of the volumes my dad purchased back in the late 1990’s that he has since passed down to me, so it’s possible WD doesn’t carry it anymore (the copyright on Amazon is 1999, my version is from 1994). Reading the Amazon reviews, you would probably be tempted to skip this book. I might be half-tempted to agree with you. Still, Mr. Noble provides some potent reminders on how to handle conflict, action, and suspense in ways that will build your story. He begins with … Keep reading!
A story has to have something happening in order for it to go anywhere. Seems simple enough, right? Events A, B, C, and so on carry us from cover to cover. What else could I say on the subject? As it turns out, I could say quite a bit. Good stories do not hum along at a consistent pace with only nice circumstances. Something difficult or even bad must happen, forcing our main character (or characters) to shift directions. This is called conflict, and it should be present in any tale you spin. In fact, you will likely find many instances to introduce conflict as you write. Your primary source of conflict is going to be the event that motivates your hero into action. However, he or she will not face a straight path to victory. Obstacles will pop up, creating the potential for more conflict and even subplots. Keep … Keep reading!