The million dollar question. What makes a good story?
First, ask yourself what is trending or popular as types of genres have trending tendencies. The 80’s was all about horror and fantasy. The 90’s was Sci-Fi and Action Adventure. The 00’s was War and Love. So what happening now you might ask?
Young adult books like Harry Potter seem to be the way things are heading. Try to ride that wave if you can or if you’re brave enough just write about whatever you feel like. If you want to be successful you have to write about something you yourself are interested in otherwise there is a good chance your manuscript will be shelved as you’ve lost interest. How many authors can honestly say they haven’t been a victim of this fatal planning flaw? We all have. I started with a children book and got past the front cover and after two weeks shelved it. So try to mix if you can what’s trending and chose a storyline that will keep your interest.
When you have found what you think you need, the next part becomes a lot simpler. You now need to draft a timeline to the story and bullet point it from start to finish. No more than five or six main characters and always remember to create a setting (setting: Location of story, details of surroundings, time of year/day etc) at each new chapter. No story will keep interest unless you have events that unfold that create mystery, problems, fear, the unexpected, joy, sadness and so on. Plot twists are a great idea for keeping interest as they are unexpected to the average reader. You lead them down a path then it takes a totally different direction than you were expecting.
You don’t always need a happy ending. A lot of more modern books leave the ending opened for a sequel or it has a bad ending which again the majority of the time is unexpected. It’s up to you.
Hope you find these blogs useful 🙂