That Infamous Hook

That Infamous Hook

Another oldie but goodie revisited…

As a writer, I am forever reading and not just for pleasure. Lately, thanks to my critique partner who happens to be an editor, I’ve been reminded of the infamous hook and the need for a novel to have one during the first 100 words. So I spent most of yesterday reworking the first page of my current work-in-progress, all in an attempt to add a really good “hook.”

Then this morning during one of my breaks – yes, writing magazines make great “break” reading – I was again learning all about hooks and how in the current market, a good hook is even more essential.

“So what is a hook?” Besides being the quintessential villain in the movie of the same name, apparently a good hook is everything in making your story a success. In today’s market, with it’s over abundance of books all vying for the public’s attention, a hook is that very sentence or catch phrase that makes your reader ask, “What happens next?”

Perhaps it’s best explained this way. As a reader, it’s that phrase that first sparks a flame inside you. It’s those words that make you think, I really want to read this story, and without those words, that phrase, you close the book or discard the ebook sample simply because it didn’t capture your attention.

Finding that perfect hook is very frustrating for an author. This is the eighth time I’ve rewritten my first page in hopes of pleasing the reader inside me. If I’m not impressed, my potential readers won’t be either.

…and so my own search for that magical, infamous hook continues.

Good luck to us both as we continue our search through seemingly endless revisions in search of that elusive hook. Or as Robin Williams’ version of Peter Pan would say, “It’s Hook or me this time.”

Thanks for reading!

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