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Thursday, April 4, 2013

How to Hook 'Em!

I've been struggling with the first couple pages from my book. I know, I'm getting nit-picky but I want it to be perfect. I want to hook the reader and make it as interesting as possible from the start. There are some books that I just can't get into. Some book are hard to get into at first but you have to stick with it. I want my book to wrap you in from the very first line.

Some things I hate...

I hate it when a book starts with descriptions. It's annoying and boring. How is that going to wrap me in? It's not. It's hard to just jump into a storyline without telling the reader anything but honestly, it's better. Sprinkle in back story. I absolutely hate it when the book starts with a huge info dump.

I've seen more and more books start with dialog. I hate that too! It works because you start right at an action and you'e in the situation but it's way over done. Every other book I read starts this way. Internal dialog however, isn't so bad. In fact, I like that because you learn about the character.

I like...

when a book starts with a quote. You don't see it much but for me, it does a great job. It sets the scene for the book and the chapter. It gets you into the mind frame the book wants to be in. It also makes you wonder which is a great way to hook a reader. If you have to think about what the quote means then you're going to read on to figure it out.

I love...

when a book starts right in the action. I love love love it when a book starts and you're immediately wrapped into a huge moment. Whether it be a flashback or flash forward or conflict, it's always interesting to be in the action. I think this is one of the best ways to start a book.

What do you guys find is the best way to hook your reader? Do the first few lines even matter? How much will you read before you decide the book isn't for you?


  1. Hmm, when reading a book to see if I like it I prefer to be interested in the first page, but sometimes I'll be willing to test the chapter out. I don't mind a book that starts right into the action, but warming up to the action is fun too.. like the hobbit starting in his hobbit hole, and going on a crazy adventure :)

    1. I agree. I usually will give it a chapter and then stop if I'm not interested. I find if I'm searching for a book to read I'll give it another try but it's hard if the beginning isn't interesting.

  2. Once I started writing, seriously, I became less patient or tolerant of bad writing and I no longer feel compelled to finish a poorly written book. I have to be hooked, pretty early on or I lose interest. I agree with you about beginning with action and I loath when a book begins with description. I do, however, love books that begin with catchy dialogue that intrigues me and has me thirsty for the action that follows. I am a new follower of your blog. Good post.


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