On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Thursday, June 05, 2008

Hook me, baby!

I sometimes say that as I open a new book. And mostly it works. However I was reading a book in my genre by a fairly well-known writer, and she failed to do this.

The best hook is the first line, the first paragraph, the first page. The opening scene was boring.

It reminds me that I must always be aware of opening hooks, too. I know this author figured her fans would read through the first scene, and they will, or skip it, but what about new people?

So, my advice today is that until you make your first million on your writing, you need to hook your readers asap.

May you enjoy the pleasures of reading today.


Anonymous Valerie said...

I agree. If i can't get hooked into the first chapter i won't read the book. If it is a favorite author i might try, but quite often i can't fore myself to read something.

5:13 AM  
Blogger Janice said...

Hi Robin,

I give a book either the first few pages to the first chapter to hook me. But those so called quotes at the back of the book from "famous" writers that liked it? I give the book that has too many of those a wide berth.


2:02 AM  
Blogger fiberfanatic said...

Thank you! If I'm not hooked, it seems as if the rest of the book is a slog -- if I can finish it. If not by the first chapter, how does an author expect the reader to finish the book?

9:20 AM  
Blogger Robin D Owens said...

Thanks, folks.

To be honest, I know some editors that will only give a paragraph, and we agonize over first lines in critique group...and first chapters.

I'll go back and slog through the first scene, but I started that book about a month ago and it was easy to put down.

You really can't do that unless you're a very big name. And some Very Big Names do excellent hooks, too.

Nora can get away with describing a town or something, but not me...

Heart Journey's second scene needs work, it's not laid out in a logical manner, more like an ADD manner.

So more work on that.

9:44 AM  

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