Originally posted in August.
"Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get."
I'm sure that the majojrity of y'all will recognize that quote. If you haven't. . .I don't know what to say to you. Comment? Comment for an explanation?
Last night, as my good friend, Alley, could tell you, I realized that in life, expect the unexpected. I've also determined that bad news must like to come in emails, but that's besides the point. My point is that this sort of thing should transfer over to our writing.
Who here hasn't picked up a book, expected a certain thing to happen, and then had that happen? I'm sure not a one of you raised your hand. Books these days, at least to me, have been becoming more and more predictable. So what's her name can transform into a dragon and her sister can't? Please. Too obvious. The sister shall transform into one later in the story.
It's in my opinion that to have a bigger impact the reader, it must really come as a shock. Throw something entirely unexpected at us! The Secrets of The Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott did this quite well. I had the unfortunate pleasure of finishing the last book at night before going to bed. The ending was so shocking that I had trouble getting to sleep. I won't spoil anything for you, but let's just say that that ending wasn't expected at all. It hit me what was happening right as it was happening, and I'm there, sitting on my bed, 10:30 at night and I'm freaking out. Freaking out, plus crying, plus running to my sisters' room to tell them I finished the book and how awesomely amazingly perfect it was (I'm pretty sure they weren't happy about that). You get me screaming about Captain Hook (okay, I nicknamed a character) for the next 24 hours? Bravo, my friend. Bravo.
Shocking endings are something I really love, and I plan to go into that in my next post. But what can you do to truly make some amazing plot twists? And, no, I'm not asking you to suddenly throw in a giant lizard that breathes fire and decides to attack. Unless that would shock me. That's a different story. What I'm saying is that whatever you shock me with? It'd better be important to the story.
Give me something unexpected and I will love you for the rest of my days.
P.S. If you haven't noticed, I'm still not getting my photos to work. Can't say I'm not trying, though.