(Editor’s Note: This post was first published on 17 December 2013.)
How does a writer keep his or her reader reading? I mean what are the practical ways, the technical ways to keep your reader reading? I have a few tips that you may find useful.
Hello, my brother and sister writers from all over the world! Winter does not officially arrive in Pittsburgh until 21 December, but it sure feels and looks like winter. Although the last couple of days have been in the 30s with no wind. You can feel the difference from days when it’s in the 20s with a wind.
But I digress.
So, how does a writer keep a reader reading? The simplest way is to make sure that each sentence provides a new and necessary piece of information that moves the story efficiently to its resolution. If you do use repetition, it must serve a definite purpose.
Another way to keep your reader reading is to engage the reader’s imagination. You have to provide the reader with just enough information to have the story make sense and no more. This encourages the reader to become part of the creative process by using his or her imagination to complete the story by inserting what you have implied.
And finally, you have to keep the story focused. I mean we are talking flash fiction here. The best way to keep your story focused is through the use of unity of place, time and viewpoint as much as possible. Don’t try to cover too much ground. Or in other words, try to capture a significant “moment” in time.
All of these things together will go a long way in keeping your reader reading.
This is the Old Soldier reporting from Pittsburgh. If you like this magazine, let me encourage you to follow it or to sign up for your free email subscription so that you won’t miss a single issue of the most exciting flash fiction publication on the Internet today.