Howdy! The release for “Portraits of a Faerie Queen” is right around the corner and I’m getting so excited! The wait is worse than waiting for an episode of one of my favorite TV shows, The Walking Dead. At least, it used to be one of my favorites before it stabbed me through the heart. 🙂
Love it or hate it, it’s impossible to deny that The Walking Dead has left a mark on popular the popular psyche and isn’t going away any time soon, especially since it’s been renewed for at least twelve seasons. At first, that news made me roll my eyes. After hour bad season two was, I wondered how they could keep up momentum for that long, but if season seven’s cliffhanger ending was anything to go off of, they might just keep up the steam.
For those don’t know, season seven ended with one of the most suspenseful five minutes on recent television. Our villain, who has only just been revealed, paces and whistles while trying to decide which character, all of which are at least likeable, if not adored by fans, to beat to death. It ends with him delivering the first blow as the other characters scream in the background, but the audience didn’t get to see who it was until October 23rd.
Usually, I catch up on The Walking Dead every few weeks due to my sporadic schedule, but I knew this was an episode that I absolutely could not miss, even if it did rip my heart out. I’m still not over it, in case you were wondering. 🙂
Chapters in books should end a lot like that season ending.
Well, okay, maybe not with the zombies, the crazy man swinging a bat wrapped in barbed wire, and the blood splatter, but with that sort of anticipation and desire to see what comes next. Each chapter should leave the reader with some sort of question, like ‘Who did the villain kill?,’ or just enough rising action that they absolutely have to know what happens on the next page. I think that’s why some of the best books are the ones you can’t put down. They constantly leave you guessing what’s going to happen, leaving the future events shrouded in mystery so that you have no choice but to turn the page and find out.
When I wrote “Portraits of a Faerie Queen,” I did my best to model the chapters on TV episodes, especially when it came to ending them. I emphasized ending putting breaks at the beginning of sort of conflict, a question, or a discovery that would take more time to explore than what was left in the chapter. For the most part, according to my past beta readers, the strategy worked pretty well. While early drafts certainly had its problems, people said they couldn’t put it down because it was constantly ending on a cliffhanger of some sort. People wanted to see my book to the end. Mission accomplished.
I think it’s safe to say that sort of anticipation has carried into this final version of the story and I am so incredibly excited to share it with you. Just remember, when you leave reviews (which I would be eternally grateful for), no spoilers! Let others have the chance to sit on the edge of their own seats.
And if you still follow The Walking Dead, how do you do it? I don’t know if my heart can take much more. You’re a stronger soul than I.
What other shows do you love to watch? How do they handle episode/season endings? Do you have to binge watch, or is the wait between episodes survivable?