Monday, May 21, 2018

What people want to read - Life with a Twist

What would happen if...
Wouldn't it be great if...
What if we could...

Let your mind wander and fill in those blanks. Boom! You're a writer! That's basically what we do - create a story based on What Ifs.

That's also how writers break the mold of stereotypical stories. Every storyline has already been done and redone over and over - we just update or upgrade - PUT A NEW TWIST ON IT!

Agents are always looking for fresh and exciting new stories. They want something that will grab readers' attention, something different, cutting edge, risk taking, outside the box stories. But not too far out there, and definitely well-written.

So how does it work? And how far is too far? Personally, I thought the zombie/Pride & Prejudice and the Vampire-killing Lincoln mashups went too far, but some people ate it up (sorry for that pun-ishment!) On the other hand, some people thought the Twilight & Gray series both went too far - but look how well they did. Sometimes the risk is worth it if it gets people talking!

In the end, a great story is a juicy plot with gripping characters you can relate to put into dire situations, making good and bad choices and figuring out how to survive. So my advice:
  • Take Risks!
  • Send your characters into Twisty Peril no one would guess!
  • Surprise Yourself!
  • and Immerse Yourself in the unknown!
And this leads me to an author who's mastered this process!


I appreciate a woman who is published and super busy, but still finds time to connect with and encourage other writers! Thanks, Sheri!

As a little girl, S.A. Larsen believed her closet held secret passageways to magical worlds brimming with all sorts of creepy creatures – her favorite kind. Now, she uses her exquisite imagination to write award-winning middle grade and young adult stories, starting with -- MOTLEY EDUCATION and MARKED BEAUTY. When she’s not chasing her characters around a cemetery or antagonizing them with the wonders of young love, she can be found in the land of lobsters and snowy winters with her husband and four children (yes, they all play hockey), a playful pooch, and three kittens.

Go check out her blog & books!

Happy Writing!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

SA is an awesome person and writer!
Need to push more risks with my current project.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Tara - thanks for the reminder to take those writing risks!

SA - creepy creatures are the best. :)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tara and Sheri ... yes we need to be creative in our thoughts re our writing tasks ... and keep taking those risks ... cheers Hilary

Chrys Fey said...

Taking it to far can pay off. And what one person thinks is too far isn’t the same for others. Interesting post!

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi Tara, Hi Sheri,

I always try to torture my characters. LOL.... Congrats Sheri, on all your amazing works and awards!

Tara... in the middle of writing my new memoir, I'll answer you back soon. Just SOOOOO busy!

Juneta key said...

Great post. Thanks for the reminder.

The Silver Fox said...

Your opening reminded me of the old Stephen King line, "I lie for a living."

Heather R. Holden said...

So true about all stories having been done before, and that we just need to put new twists on 'em. There have been times where I wanted to avoid certain tropes, since they felt overdone, but my muse has always convinced me to embrace them when playing "what if" games with me, LOL.

Anonymous said...

I love trying to put new twists on things that have been done before. I do it way too much with vampires. LOL

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I thought the Lincoln and Pride and Prejudice mashups sounded ridiculous, but after seeing the movies, I have to admit, I liked them. So, there is a market for all kids of crazy ideas!

Christine Rains said...

I saw those movies and laughed. Fantastic advice, Tara! I love new twists and seeing things in a different light.

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