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Friday, March 23, 2012

Writing Chapter One

The mountain of crumpled paper is gone, and gone with it is the fog that had enveloped your brain. The first sentence of your novel is shooting fireworks off the page and excitement is bubbling up inside you as you write the rest of the first paragraph. Your fingers are vigorously tapping the keys on your computer while words practically tumble from your ears.

My fingers are vigorously tapping the keys on my computer!
Photo by Chrys Fey

Good! Because just as important as the first sentence is the content that follows it to create the first chapter.

Don’t skimp on the first chapter if you wrote a prologue. The first chapter is still critical even if content came before it. You don’t want your readers to be fascinated by your prologue but completely bored with Chapter One.
Personally, I absolutely deplore a book that doesn’t cut to the chase and start telling an interesting story right from the first few pages. I like books that are exciting from the first sentence, the first page, the first chapter, and doesn’t let up for a single second.

Photo by Chrys Fey

The worst thing that can ever happen is for a reader to pick up your book only to it put it down after reading a few pages. Therefore, you must create pages that sparkle to follow that masterpiece of a first sentence.
All of the writing that you do for your book should always be your very best, but the first chapter (and prologue) has to be even better in order for you to draw your readers in. And that is just what I am doing with my book. A shocking event happens just in the first chapter. Then in the third chapter, someone dies. Don’t forget though that this is the fourth and last book of my series, and unless your book is a fast-paced thriller too, you do not need so many shocking events to occur right in the beginning of your book.

Now what are you waiting for? START WRITING!


QUESTION: Do you like fast-paced books or books that are slower-paced?
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