Thursday, November 12, 2009

Closing a Chapter with a Cliffhanger

I've been enjoying my escape into the wonderful world of reading children's fantasy novels. Now that I am writing my own I understand completely why it is recommended to read what you write.

I have uncovered a fountain of knowledge to aid me in this 50,000 words in a month quest. (I'm over 25,000 by the way)

One thing in particular I've observed is the end of a chapter or scene generally leaves you hanging. I am especially drawn when it not only leaves you hanging, but it lifts you up and takes you somewhere new. The POV changes to reveal a different characters thoughts in a different cliffhanger.

My story is filled with them and I am enjoying this ride and learning a lot. I find my mind continually racing with what calamity my protagonist can dig himself into next. It can be quite a rush!

I was reading the blogspot of Gail Carson Levine, author of Ella Enchanted.

She wrote: "About ending a chapter with a crisis, I've been asked by editors sometimes to end with the crisis plus my main character's reaction.

"Yes! That's what I've been doing. I don't think I would have ever come up with it unless I had been reading all those suspense and fantasy novels over the last few months.

So as I sit down at my computer and lull myself back inside my fantasy world where I left my main characters lost and alone in utter darkness trying to find a hidden door. I finally get to resolve my present cliffhanger. Which isn't as much fun as creating them, but I suppose it must be done.


  1. Where do you get all those neat pictures you put on your posts?

  2. I take them of course. Had a great time mountain climbing.

    Seriously, I do take them when I can, but the internet has a wealth of pics available for the taking. Just google the right words and your in business.