Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Seducing the Reader

“The beginning of a story, any story, cannot and should not be referred to as anything other than a seduction. It is our job to make our audience want us.” -- Robert Gregory Browne in “How to Seduce Your Reader.”
According the author, the three-act story structure is equivalent to seduction, foreplay, and climax. I hadn’t thought of it in these terms, but that’s exactly what makes a good story. The reader is 1) seduced by the opening into continuing on the story’s journey, 2) led through the tale with titillating details that slowly build the reader's interest, and 3) after a number of rises and falls in the action, brought to a satisfying climax. Thinking back to recent short stories and novels that disappointed me, the reason a story failed mostly happened in the foreplay and climax sections. Either I grew tired of the middle because the author failed to "push my buttons" or was disappointed by an ending that left me unsatisfied and grumpy.


Alyssa Ast said...

Wow that is a very unique wat to look at it. That is very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Jim Harrington said...

It is interesting. Talk about getting turned on by your work! :)