Your Readers Love To Read About Tension Between Your

Writing-and-Speaking Tension is the brother of suspense, but it’s different. Suspense is where something is left ‘suspended’ but tension is where something is being pulled in two directions. Here’s how to have your readers biting their nails wanting to know how a tense situation is resolved. So just what is tension? It is where your character is being pulled in two, even three directions at once. Imagine Lizzy Battlebridge, the heroine in our tale of everyday country folk, falling for Tom Roding the tractor mechanic. She has been giving him the eye and knows he is interested. Problem is she’s been seeing Ralph the postman for five years now and is really in love with him. Or is she? You will recognise this as the classic love triangle. What we have to do now is show the reader the various emotions that assail Lizzie as she is torn between Tom and Ralph. We must show the excitement and even danger of her new love, whilst at the same time telling the reader what she goes through whilst trying to sort out who she will end up with. Plus there is the fear of having to tell Ralph, assuming he hasn’t cottoned on already (but maybe he has!), and her agonies over what Ralph might do and say when she does pluck up the courage to tell him. Tension is usually something which develops over a period of time and several incidents or conversations, but it is possible to hit the reader between the eyes with a situation that generates tension immediately. This will often be when the tension arises between just two people or between one person and a situation. Here are examples of both of these situations: Lizzie is in the Post Office staffroom about to relieve her workmate at the counter when, through the half open door, she overhears two cusomers talking… Scenario 1: They say that Tom’s tractor hit a tree and he landed on the ground in agony. He’s now on his way to hospital. Lizzie can’t go and sit by his bedside until her shift finishes at 5.30. But wait! She has arranged with Ralph to pick her up and go into Milchester for a Macdonalds and a movie! Here the tension will build as Lizzie goes though the evening with one love, whilst fearing for the life of the other. It could be protracted over several days as one thing after another prevents her from seeing Tom. Scenario 2: One customer is telling the other they have just heard that the Melksham & Milton Keynes Building Society is in turmoil. The Chief Cashier has disappeared and vast amounts of cash have disappeared with him. Lizzie’s life savings are with MMM. What is she going to do? Of course, there is insurance in place to cover embezzlement, but Lizzie doesn’t know this. Yet. When she does, tension relieved. In a previous article I have spoken about using suspense in a story. Suspense and tension are blood brothers and virtually inseparable. If you’ve generated one the other should be close on its heels. The difference is, and this is a generalisation, that suspense can be held over a long period of time, whereas tension needs to be introduced at intervals followed by the relief of that tension. Until the next one. Otherwise your readers are going to have no nails left! So, in our storyline with Lizzie we could say that the suspense of who she is going to end up with runs throughout the story, but scenes of tension, such as Tom’s precipitation from the tractor, make up just part of the story. Now if you’ve got an hour or so, I would be awfully grateful if you would kindly finish the story above as I’m dying to know what happens to poor Lizzie. Will she, won’t she? I’m on my fifth black coffee and the suspense is killing me! About the Author: 相关的主题文章:

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