A black fedora crouched low over his hooked nose and stiff blonde mustache. He hugged his fraying coat tightly around his body, as if he was afraid it would run off on him, like the second button had. But the really curious thing about the man was the half-carat diamond ring squeezed onto the little finger of his left hand.
Sure, the Hunger Games books are emotional roller coasters that broach deep moral questions. But a lot of books have those qualifications. Why aren’t they all as wildly popular as The Hunger Games?
Because the story is highly marketable on an organic level.
You may be a grammatical black belt, leaping big vocabulary words in a single bound. But take care: you could still be making elementary mistakes that’ll leave your readers cringing, eye-rolling, and yes, even face-palming.
You’re probably thinking this entire post should consist of one word:
But it’s not going to. Because as it turns out, there is a right way to write formula fiction.
Let’s start with the preliminaries.
Does your story sag in the middle? Do you feel like you’re plowing through boring scenes just to get to the cool ones? Is your protagonist wandering around aimlessly, looking for the climax?
It’s not enough to have all the major events written down in a neat little list – what you need is structure.