Do you understand the building blocks of a scene? Have you heard of scene and sequel? The concept and terms (confusing because there is both Scene and scene) were coined by Dwight Swain in his book, Techniques of the Selling Writer. At its core, scene and sequel are ways to control the pace of your story, and keep your plot moving forward.   Scene allows tension to build; Sequel allows the reader time to process, and the Point of View character’s actions drive the plot forward.  Looking at the big picture of your story, your ultimate goal is to create an emotional experience for your reader. Readers have to have a character they can relate to or with whom they can identify. To make the emotional response powerful, you need to amp up the emotional experience. The reader needs to feel as if they are the heroine of the romance, the sleuth in the mystery, the captain fighting a killer whale, the man …

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Writing a scene takes thought. Before starting, it is a good idea to ask yourself a few questions. This will help you hone in on the core elements of the scene you are planning, and will (hopefully) make it much easier to write. Today I have 6 questions to ask yourself before writing a scene. 1. What is the purpose of your scene?a) Will it advance the plot? If so, how?b) Will it introduce a new character or develop an existing      one? If so, how?c) Will it develop the romance (if there is one)?d) If you are writing a mystery, does it introduce a clue or   a suspect or a red herring?e) does it introduce a conflict? If so, what? 2. What characters will be in the scene? Try not to over-populate a scene. Too many characters make it difficult for the reader to follow. 3. What is the conflict in the Scene?a) is it internal (throwing an obstacle in the way of the  …

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