There’s a secret to grabbing your reader and have them surprised at the time when they put your book down. Wanna know what it is?
Sounds simple doesn’t it. We all know how important emotions are in our story. Our scenes come alive when we SHOW the emotional impact of our story. (No, saying ‘she felt, she was scared, ect does not give that emotional charge that we need. You’re telling, not showing.) Through building off our characters emotions we interact with our readers on a personal level. When we interact with them, bring them into our story that’s what hooks our readers, keeps them reading and make them want to read more.
But, don’t skimp on the emotions. Weak writing kills a story faster than anything else. If there is weak writing – make sure it’s only in your first draft! That’s the ‘she said angrily (omg adv), she felt strangely confused, she appeared flustered’. We all do it. But let’s stop, shall we?
How do we showcase emotions then? You can’t always tell your reader how your character is feeling. But you can show it. If a character is biting their lip, wringing their hands or tapping their fingernails … what type of emotion does that show? What about how they see the world around them? Take the physical description of the emotion above and pair it with their scene. I doubt they will notice the gentle breeze as it flows through the field of daisies. Instead, they notice the annoying buzz of bees and scouring the area around them to make sure they don’t get stung.
Take the time to enter your character’s head. Feel what they are feeling. Don’t be afraid to. Go deeper, deeper than you have before. That’s what brings the emotions out front and center. That is what grabs your reader. If you can show them, make it real – I promise it will be worth it.