New answers tagged

1

First point, as Lauren Ipsum indicated, be very, very careful about taking a living person as your model. Taking a dead person as your model could also give you problems if that person was a writer (a category which could include people primarily famous for other reasons), and his or her writings are still in copyright. Whether this (putting in-copyright ...


1

I've heard that suspense isn't about WHAT will happen, but about WHEN it will happen. When will the bomb under the table go off, when will the rival candidate's rigging of the polls be found out? If at all? Anyway, to answer your question, you might want to increase the stakes--if the campaigner doesn't win, the rival will do something bad. You might want ...


3

You're being given a prompt, so that will do half the work for you. I think it was J. Michael Straczynski, writer of Bablyon 5, who wrote that one could sum up "conflict" in three questions: What does the character want? What will the character do to get it? What will someone do to stop the character? So you take your prompt (John needs to find a flat ...


3

I have a few ideas: Every word matters. Avoid adverbs, information dumps, and descriptive adjectives to the greatest extent possible. Still make it a "play of three acts" but with the first act being a single paragraph describing the protagonist, the antagonist, and the problem to be overcome. To build suspense quickly, we need to know right away what the ...


1

This seems almost too simplistic to make a good answer, but if your problem is that you can't generate suspense in a very short story, make the story longer. Alternatively, decide that the story is fine the length it is, and just accept that such a short story does not require suspense. The reader doesn't spend enough time with the characters to care about ...



Top 50 recent answers are included