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.
Image from Dark Uncle
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.
Image by J. Finn-Irwin
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.
Photo by Ciara McDonnell
I preach plenty about trimming the fat from writing. Strunk, White and Zinsser command it, and I’ve learned it firsthand from dealing with limited space in ads, radio commercials and billboards.
Efficient writing is better writing.