Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sweet Evil Blog Tour Stop - Guest Post by Author Wendy Higgins


Today is the Sweet Evil blog tour stop. This tour is hosted by Fall Into Books in an effort to gain support for the publication of the second book of the Sweet Trilogy. Please support the author, Wendy Higgins, by adding her book to your Goodreads shelves!

About Sweet Evil, from Goodreads: What if there were teens whose lives literally depended on being bad influences?

This is the reality for sons and daughters of fallen angels.

Tenderhearted Southern girl Anna Whitt was born with the sixth sense to see and feel emotions of other people. She’s aware of a struggle within herself, an inexplicable pull toward danger, but Anna, the ultimate good girl, has always had the advantage of her angel side to balance the darkness within. It isn’t until she turns sixteen and meets the alluring Kaidan Rowe that she discovers her terrifying heritage and her willpower is put to the test. He’s the boy your daddy warned you about. If only someone had warned Anna.

Forced to face her destiny, will Anna embrace her halo or her horns?

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Since my book reviews focus on the craft of writing, I asked Wendy share some insight into the technical craft she used in Sweet Evil. Today, Wendy was kind enough to talk to us about creating tension in a novel. Enjoy!


Incorporating Tension into a Novel
By Wendy Higgins
 
For me, tension is one of the most important aspects of a story. The stakes need to be high, and you need to want to keep turning the page. Tension is a funny thing because as a reader we love that tantalizing feeling of wanting something to happen SO bad, but timing is essential. As the writer, you don’t want to kill the tension by giving readers what they want too soon, but you also don’t want to drag the tension out too long, having it become just unrealistic and annoying.

There are many types of tension. Three examples that I focus on in the Sweet series are plot tension—when you really want a certain event to happen, character tension—when you want a character to come to a certain realization, and romantic tension—when you want the characters to finally “get together” or admit their feelings. As the reader, we know these things will most likely come true, just as we want them to, but the journey to the ending needs to be exciting, well-paced, and hot. It’s all about the anticipation—dropping hints throughout the storyline and giving the reader glimpses of hope to keep them going.

While writing a series it can be especially difficult to try and keep one or more of those tensions going from book to book. This was much harder for me than I expected! At least one major tension needs to be satisfied at the end of each book, just to give readers some sort of satisfaction, while leaving enough unresolved tension to make them want to pick up the next book.

These are all my opinions, of course. :) How you incorporate this into your own writing craft depends very much on you and your personal style. No two writers do it the same, and that’s how it should be. Rely on your writing pals to critique your work and let you know if your tension is working or not. Happy writing!

12 comments:

  1. Some good advice for sure. If there isn't good tension why bother to keep reading?

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    1. @ Jenny -- I agree! Tension is essential!

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  2. I am so bad at writing romantic tension. So I've kinda left it out of my books. This is certainly some very sound advice. I've never thought of it like that before.

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    1. @ Lan -- yeah, I really like the way Wendy broke this down. Gave me a new perspective as well.

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  3. Replies
    1. @ Amber - thanks for putting together this blog tour! I was happy for a chance to participate.

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  4. Replies
    1. @ Wendy - thanks for stopping by! Best of luck to you!

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  5. Yeah, this is the number one reason readers can't put a book down, if they find themselves in that situation. It's all about the tension the story has keeping the reader riveted. Great post!

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  6. Great post! I'm a huge fan of Sweet Evil and know that Wendy did a fantastic job w/tension in her own story!

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  7. Nice topic. Sometimes it can be a bit hard to write about tension in a novel. I love the cover for that book by the way.

    Thanks for stopping by
    @ Livin' Life Through Books

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  8. Eep I love this post! Tension is such a great and often best aspect of a book! I really want to read Sweet Evil I keep hearing how amazing it is!! great post!

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