Writing with cliff-hanger chapter endings.
I remember being inspired when I read Dan Brown’s first novel The Da Vinci Code.
His writing style leaves you hanging at the end of every chapter. Dan Brown always leaving you wanting to find out what happens next, and always leaving you not wanting to put the novel down.
Little did I know when I read Dan Brown’s book, that a few years later I’d be a novelist also.
Keeping in mind the aim of writing with cliff-hanger chapter endings, when I wrote Nothing Left But Fear, I chose a writing style to achieve this too.
When I was interviewed on the Radio with Alan Coote, he had read my novel beforehand. Before we went live, he commented before on how I ended each chapter, leaving him hanging and wanting to continue reading.
‘An uncomfortable yet compelling read; An intriguing and original novel. You are drawn in from the first page as the terrifying plot unfolds… A unique story-line which delves deep into the human psyche.’ Review on Amazon
How I achieve cliff-hanger chapter endings
The way I personally achieve cliff-hanger chapter ends, is to write each character from beginning to end. When I’ve finished writing each one, I then splice them all together. With Nothing Left But Fear I finished the writing off by writing the chapters from the Purps view-point.
Whilst writing the story for each character, I insert breaks in the story-line at points where I think it makes for a good cliff-hanger.
When I finally splice the novel all together, the individual character chapters are split apart. This leaves you needing to read-on until you next find this character or plot within the story line, which could be a few chapters ahead in the book.
I wasn’t always able to achieve this suspense, as it depends on which character you are writing about, and where their story fits in within the overall plot.
Writing in this way does make for a complicated job. But for me I see it as the only way to get my story down on paper, or should I say typed on my keyboard.
My new novel about Daniel Hawkins, a detective in London, is written in the same way. As I write this blog post, I am over 36,000 words in, so I hope to release this novel mid 2017.