Yesterday, I mentioned how I had a thought in the morning about how I needed to add something earlier in the story. But that wasn’t enough. I ended up adding a prologue too. What good are prologues? Some editors will say: take them out. No one reads them.
But prologues can show a setup of what is to come, subtly, why someone is the way they are–a tragedy. It MUST be important to the story. It MUST show something that is critical to the telling of the story that will be so much better if it is SHOWN, not mentioned throughout the story, trying to make a point. I read a story that had the main character, the protagonist, die. What? So I had to start again with chapter 1, searching for the main character. Someone I could root for. It was near the end of the book that I learned the significance of the prologue. Not good. By then, I didn’t care. I’d read the prologue so long ago, it didn’t matter.
I’ve noticed in movies and TV series the need to insert “flashbacks” or like prologues in the middle of stories. My dad would never be able to follow. He couldn’t watch them any more if he was still alive. To me, it’s so overdone constantly, that it pulls me out of the story. I’m like, NO! Quit making me time-travel in the middle of the story! That’s what a flashback is. Briefly, it can share something that happened in the past, but it can also pull readers out of the current story. Show it at the beginning. Let me see what happened in the beginning, and then let me get on with the story as it is today. Just my two cents.
I do want to see what has made the person the one they are today, but earlier, so that when all this other stuff happens and he or she reacts, I’ll know where they’re coming from. To me, it makes the character so much deeper.
Okay, before I write 4,000 words on my blog, I’m off to another horribly hot day. Best to stay in and write at least 3,000 words to reach my minimum word count required on the story.
Hope you have a grand one!
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
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