Thursday, 20 June 2013

First chapters and antagonists

I've  just read that someone advocates writing the last chapter of a book before you go back and start at the beginning. Cripes! I can't imagine doing that; in fact I think it would be a waste of time. I may have a general outline in my head of what the end point is going to be - or is intended to be - but the detail of how I'll get my characters there is far too vague for me to try and write the last chapter first.

 I've also been reading a good blog post on first chapters. Here's the link, in case you are struggling with those opening pages: It's the post for the 9th June you want.

I think I'm OK on most of the things she mentions, and it is good to know how important the antagonist is in novels and how varied they can be. My antagonist, of course, is Meg Douglas and she makes Matho's life a misery! She is such fun to write because, like Scarlett O'Hara, she is entirely self-centred and doesn't hide her feelings from the reader though she may and often does hide them from the characters around her. I've even given her a vulnerable spot, just so she comes across as human.

I've been very bold this month and sent off two submissions. Let's hope one of them turns up positive.


Anne R. Allen said...

Thanks much for the shout-out for my "1st Chapter Check-list." It's nice to hear it's helpful. The antagonist is the biggest problem for most writers. Sounds like you have a fun, classic villain, which makes structuring your novel so much easier. Good luck with the submissions!

Nick Adler said...

I have read a lot of books where the ending was weak and ineffective. For those books, I think the author might be wise in writing the last first. There is nothing more disappointing then a weak, or staged ending.