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The Power of Tension In Our Stories We all understand that the thing that keeps readers reading is tension. So, we writers always want to include as much tension as possible in our stories. What Kind of Tension? You have to consider if you're writing the story this way in an effort to create tension because the story itself has so little tension. Why Do ...


I think you're referring to [nonlinear narrative][1]. The pivotal moment for me was seeing Pulp Fiction by Quentin Tarantino. I almost got whiplash being thrown around. When done effectively, like in Pulp Fiction, you keep wondering: How? You are constantly looking forward, even though you are often looking back. I can't tell you how to do it, but this ...


Steve Martini's thriller The List starts that way. It's a terrific book. I think the technique is fairly common in thrillers. Not sure about other genres.


I just read a book called "Mrs. Queen Takes the Train," a little "what if" about Queen Elizabeth. Before the story comes together, we get the stories of six different household retainers and other people, and it only becomes a united story about halfway through the book. It's a delightful little fantasy, by the way --


It's called a "braided novel" or "braided narrative", because you have several points of view, or storylines, merging into a whole later on. For example, George R. R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones books are like this.


It seems as if you are describing a story like Les Miserables which has various subplots, but it main thread is the story of Jean Valjean, which is like a story within a story Is this the type of story you are going for?

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