Emotional Appeal in Novels

Last post I talked about conflict/tension/problems growing like an ocean wave, cresting at the climax. Inherent conflict and high stakes are necessary, but Donald Maass’
Writing the Breakout Novel, adds an interesting ingredient to the mix: an emotional “gut” appeal. According to Maass, “gut emotional appeal springs from the emotional situations that grab us in life.” To me this means, if I add in a complication that is not only high conflict/tension and also bring something few can ignore emotionally (think dying characters, fear of something others take for granted, or unrequited or passionate love) my book’s premise will be more likely to succeed.
Writing Tip for Today: Try to state your novel’s premise (basic story line) in one or two sentences. Does your story include an emotionally gut-wrenching component? If not, or if that component seems overused, try to think of some ideas. You can use the phrase, “What If?” to help you brainstorm.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.