Last week, thanks to a heads up from Maria Zannini I won a copy of the Writer’s Companion by Carlos J Cortes and Renee Miller. So I dipped into it and was hit over the head by the obvious.
Sometimes I wonder if that’s the point of how-to books…to slow us down enough to think about and comprehend the basics.
Anyway, this was the bit of wisdom that fell on me: You can’t tell at what point a reader will stop reading your book, but when they pick it up again, you have to hook them again at that point.
So that means, the necessary hooks aren’t just at the first page and last pages of chapters, though these are vital. At every point, the reader must want to read more. The hook will vary (character, description, action, etc), but the need to have a hook won’t.
As authors, we are continually competing for readers’ attention. It’s real easy to put a book down to talk, to watch television, to walk the dog. We have to give the reader a reason not to do any of those things.
No pressure then 🙂