After finishing The Way of All Flesh by Samuel Butler it came to me. If I’m going to make my readers keep reading my story needs to be weaved.It’s like this.
Firstly, you must have a very good idea of what your plot is and who your characters are. Once you’ve done that – and of course by this time you’ve spent many hours on your manuscript- you need to plot it out. If you can do it on bristol board it’s probably best and you most probably will want to use a pencil so that you can erase.
Start with your most important characters, work your way down to the most minor ones and point by point, like the thread of a time line, jot down the points of their personal journey. Once you start your second character you’ll see that your thread will no longer be straight but rather intertwines with that of the main character. Keep going until you made it through each different plot.
This exercise will achieve a few things for you.
1. You will be forced to think of the development of each of the characters and how they relate to other characters and the overall plot of the book.
2. If certain characters are not developed enough or unnecessary it will become clear soon enough because you’ll notice that their lines do not weave through the other character threads so that you’ll either want to develop them more or drop them completely.
3. Once you complete your weaving you will have a great overview and writing should be easier in the sense that you completely understand your characters, who they are and where they are going and their relationship to other characters in the book.
So now it’s clear to me what my next step in my story writing is and I hope to have been of help to you too. A story must be weaved and its seams must be clear to you though your desire is to weave it seemingly seamlessly.