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Thursday, June 2, 2011

My first Blog Hop

I have decided to participate in the Author Blog Hop from Alternative and Sassy Brit.

Here is the question for the week:

THIS WEEK'S AUTHOR BLOG HOP QUESTION FOR THURSDAY, JUNE 2nd IS ABOUT: Writing scenes(Part One): How would you define a 'twist'? Do you use a twist in every scene or just at the end of the book? Question provided by affiliate author L. P Robinson (Part two is next week!)

When there is a "twist" in a story you are talking about a plot twist. You are going along reading about the story and you are able to predict what is going to happen most of the time. As a reader you are lulled into believing you have predicted the ending. Then suddenly the character does something totally different and you no longer can predict the ending. Sometimes it comes at the end of a chapter and it a very effective hook to move a reader to go onto the next chapter. Or it might come at almost the end of the story where suddenly two groups who had been enemies make a 360 degree turn and become friends. You as a reader are stunned and it makes for very effective writing.

I wouldn't use a twist in every scene, but sometimes you want your reader to be shaken up a little, so you will use it at the end of a chapter. Probably a twist is most effective at the end when the reader coasts along and then suddenly there is this big change and the reader flounders around a little uncertain how to handle this. Of course, good writers find a way to ground the story and end it in a way that will be satisfying.

Actually, this goes beyond the question, but one of my pet peeves is getting to the end of a book and nothing has been settled. I have found this in many, many books that have been given great reviews. Yes, the writing has been good and the world building in a lot of them is good too, but at the end you are left with this desolation, because nothing has been resolved. None of the things you thought were going to happen have occurred and you are left with the question: Why did I read this? I like a story where there is some resolution of the problems a character has had to face. Or when a character in which you have invested your time is able to find happiness. This is not necessarily a happy ending, but at least it validates the time you spent reading some of these extremely long stories filled with useless adventures going nowhere. One example of this is The Passage by Justin Cronin. I won't tell you the ending since it would spoil anyone else's reading it, but once you read it get back to me and tell me if you didn't have this same reaction. This is not taking away from the writing, but even well written books suffer from this problem.

This was fun and Sassy Brit, and Roseanne Dowell, thank you for pushing me to participate. Welcome to all the new people who have found me. I hope you enjoy my ranting and meanderings.

Until the next time enjoy.


  1. I have to agree with you about the happy ending, or at least a satisfying one! I don't care how many plot twists there are, if the story leaves me feeling flat and anxious for the characters.
    Welcome to the hop!

  2. Thanks, Diane! In some ways it's like a meal without dessert! It's a feeling of completeness:)

    Thanks for visiting. I'll try to do another one when I can.

  3. Unsatisfying endings are irritating. But a poorly setup twist ending is just as bad. When you have approach a twist ending, you want the reader surprised, but they also need to be able to think back and say, "Oh, of course, I should have seen that coming."

    Cher Green

  4. I agree Cher. I just finished reading the second book of The Hunger Games.(I'm a little slow, I know) and if you haven't read it there is such a twist at the end I almost couldn't accept it, but Suzanne Collins had paved the way for it. It is just really sudden and the reader has to gasp when it happens. Your entire equillibrium is shaken.

  5. I like a good twist, either in a chapter or at the end of the book. I try to provide them in my stories, too.
    As for Cronin, it could be that he is writing a sequel and that is the reason there is no resolution. Some writers do that.

  6. Barbara, thanks for coming back to this post. I apprecate your thinking he might be planning a sequel, but if you read the book you would see it would be difficult to add a sequel. It's like the ending of The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. You know he couldn't add a sequel to it. Read the book and you will see what I mean:)

    I like a good twist in the ending and try to put one in my writing too!

  7. Welcome Barbara!

    May you have many more happy blog hops to come :)

    Yes I agree, I don't want to be let down at the end, with so many unanswered twists I just feel let down and annoyed! Great rant. Thoroughly agree lol

    Here's my response to this week's blog hop question! I'll try not to be so slow next week! Hope you can play again, it's lovely to meet you. ;)



  8. I fully agree with what you said about a satisfying ending. I don't mind when they leave me with my imagination running full time wondering what will happen if... but when they fail to answer the questions the story generates, then I feel cheated.

    Twists at the end of chapters or the book are both great. One makes me keep reading and the other one wows me into looking forward to the author's next book.

  9. Angel, thank you for visiting and for appreciating my rant.:)

    So glad to meet you too and running over to read your response. I am looking forward to participating in another one this week if I can.

  10. Well, hello, hello! Two ladies I very much admire in one place, BarbaraE and Nancy. I feel the same way about satisfying endings, too. They don't necessarily have to be happy, but that's a refreshing change of pace, these days. Also, if the writer puts an animal in peril and never resolves it or lets us know what happened, I spend all my time fretting about the animal, looking for something in the read I may have missed, yada yada. It totally throws me out of the story. I want to know about every cat, dog, horse, or chicken, if it's been part of the story. But maybe that's just me. Anyone?

  11. Blogger is going crazy and like all crazy people there is a way around it. If you try to post and get that stupid blogger problem screen go back with the arrow and click Post a comment again. It usually works for me.:)

    Heather, thank you for the compliment! I don't see Nancy here, but I guess in the vicinity. She's in the next post.:) I agree with you about leaving any character in danger or unfinished. I always go back and check if a character hasn't been resolved. it's just lazy writing to do that and even lazier editing.

  12. I am so glad you joined us! I completely agree about being left hanging, soooo annoying. A twist is great if it moves the story along. In fact sometimes I use a twist just to get myself out of a funk. It works!!

    Thanks for the post, hope to see you back next week!

  13. Amy, thank you for visiting. I really enjoyed being part of the Blog Hop and I will be back, hopefully, this week. My real life is a little hectic, but I like this idea very much. Very happy you agree with me.:) I wish more authors felt the same way. It seems to be a kind of trend lately.:)


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