First things first, keep an eye out of the next chapter in Robyn Hood!! It should go live either this evening or tomorrow! Second things second, I haven’t given stats in my writing in a while so we’ll do that first!!!!
Numbers of queries for Into the Lamp sent: 7
Numbers of rejections for Into the Lamp: 3
CNRs (Closed No Response): 1
Full requests: 0
Level of hope: 9%
Number of words written in Heir to His Crown: 44,070 (Also, if you’ve missed it, check out the epic progress bar on the sidebar of our site.)
Song that has really been inspiring me: “Words” by Hawk Nelson (Lyrics I especially like: “I don’t want to say a word unless it points the world back to You” // “God Your voice is the only thing we need to hear” // “I want to speak Your love not just another noise” // )
Another song (’cause you know I can’t pick just one): “Revolutionary” by Josh Wilson (Lyrics I especially like: “Maybe you’re not like me, maybe we don’t agree, maybe that doesn’t mean we’ve gotta be enemies” // “Why does kindness seem revolutionary?” // “When did we let hate get so ordinary?” // “I’m turning the TV down, drowning their voices out” // “What would Jesus do? He would love first” // )
I HIGHLY recommend checking both of these songs out!!!!!!! Now let’s get into today’s post!!! <33
Aah, the good ole plot twist! They can make a book exciting and keep readers on the edge of their seats, but only when done right! Yes, there are many times when I’ve read a book and the whole “plot twist” just falls short. Readers come with expectations. They want to be shocked but also see it coming. They want it to make sense. So how do we write plot twists that readers will love? That’s what we’re uncovering here at Teen Writers’ Nook with six awesome tips to accomplish your next plot twist!! At the end, hopefully, these plot twists won’t seem so scary to write! Huge shout out to my AH-MAY-ZHING friend, Joy Caroline, for requesting this post!
1. Foreshadowing is still AWESOME!
I’m sure you’ve heard it MANY times before to foreshadow. Well, it’s especially important to foreshadow your plot twists!! Why? I’ve heard it before in reviews when the plot twist is revealed and the readers feel like the author just made that up on the spot! Though we want to be thrown off from the surprise, when we look back we want to see in the story signs that point to it! So foreshadow, leave little hints that maybe this servant girl is really the long lost princess of a stolen kingdom. Or this knight is hiding a powerful weapon of magic and destruction. Or the villain is the hero’s father!!! (I really LOVE that trope. 🙂 But don’t make it obvious! One of the best books I’ve read that was able to nail foreshadowing and completely throw me off when the whole plot twist was revealed is All Fall Down by Ally Carter. In the book Grace, the MC, is constantly having flashbacks to a particular memory. At first we get small portions of it and then it starts gradually getting bigger. As the reader, I thought the flashbacks weren’t that important until the plot twist was revealed. Those flashbacks were indirectly referencing something that was going to be revealed at the end and I didn’t even know it!
Though we want to be thrown off from the surprise, when we look back we want to see in the story signs that point to it!
2. Give readers a reason to second guess themselves!
Another great book with some epic foreshadowing is, you guessed it, The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen. When I was reading this book I had created a theory about some secret I thought was gonna be revealed. But throughout the book I kept second guessing myself. There were a million reasons why this wasn’t the way I thought. (By the way, it didn’t turn out like I had thought all along. XD) I’d formulate my theory and be given a reason why I shouldn’t think that, break it down, be given a hint why it could be that, build it again and so on until we actually got the plot twist.
3 Don’t always go with the first thing that comes to mind!
4 Your plot twist needs to make sense!
5. Let your characters react to it!
Okay, so I was reading Out of Sight, Out of Time by Ally Carter (yes, I’m using another Ally Carter book, but her stories are FULL of plot twists) and there was this whole shocking secret that was revealed near the end! I was shocked. It completely threw me off but at the same time I shoulda seen it coming from the incredible foreshadowing…but it still wasn’t the most amazing thing ever. Why? Because while I was sitting over here in surprise Cammie, the MC, was just like oh, okay. And I was like GIRL YOU’RE JUST FOUND OUT THIS TOTALLY SURPRISING THING AND YOU’RE ACTING LIKE ALL WAS AMAZINGLY WELL??????? No, guys, we need to see how the character takes this new news. Like in Star Wars *SPOILER* we find out Luke’s dad is Darth Vadar.
What does Luke do? He doesn’t like the news! It surprises him and we see how upset he is. And a few scenes later he’s still dwelling on it. The surprise had an impact on him! Also bonus point: don’t always go with oh, I knew it all along! That’s probably my biggest pet peeve in stories when the MC finds out so and so was really this and that and they’re like I knew it all along!! If the MC had “known it all along” then why was this even a plot twist?! (Though, note: SOMETIMES this can work!)