Take time to deliberate, but when the time for action has arrived, stop thinking and go in.
- Napoleon

Friday, May 18, 2007

Chapter End-hooks

Yesterday over at Erica Writes, she was talking about using hooks at the beginnings and ends of your chapters to get your readers to want to turn the next page and keep reading. In her post Thursday Thirteen: TATTF, she gives thirteen of her beginning hooks. I've never really thought about the beginning hooks, and (now that I've had time to think about the process) I guess I haven't consciously tried to even put in end hooks, but I've been told my chapter endings are hook-like.

Yesterday, I promised to post some chapter end-hooks and as I was looking at my three books, I had to make a decision. Which book? In the end, the decision was... :drumroll: Blink. So here goes. (Please keep in mind, while these are the final sentence or sentences, sometimes I use the last few paragraphs to set up the hook.)

1) “You no longer have value here. Now, leave these premises. The Union will give you your reassignment before the day’s end.”
2) “In fact, the more I think about it,” he said finally. “You may just be perfect.”
3) “Maybe,” the old man returned, the look on his face saying he thought nothing of the sort. “I do know I could definitely use a drink.”
4) Long after Timothy left, the two could still hear his laughter echoing through the shelves.
5) "...Failure is not within the bounds of this mission. You’ll see."
6) When Mary looked back, Parker was gone.
7) “...I don’t have time to explain any further. We have to get out of here.”
8) “A place where we might have to stop, whether we want to or not.”
9) Suddenly she felt dirty and ashamed of the part she had played.
10) “Leaving is not a problem. If you wanted to stay… now that would be a problem.”
11) "...Chances are anyone who finds us is going to be more worried about where we came from than about a few stalks of grain.”
12) If these people had the technology her own city lacked, they could easily defeat the Union.
13) “They voted to think about thinking about it, I think.”
14) "...When we get home, I’ll show them to you.” “If we get home,” she corrected.
15) She knew if the Union still possessed such a weapon, the people of her home must be freed from it, and it was her new mission to see it done.
16) After all the years since they’d fought to be seen as individuals, they hadn’t learned a thing.
17) “It’ll be a moot point, won’t it? By the time any of them worry about what to do without the Union, the Union will already be gone.” “I hope you’re right.”
18) “You didn’t sit here and watch a floating head push through a rock wall.”
19) His voice broke off suddenly and a soft thud sounded in front of her as the corridor exploded with light.
20) And then they were through, running out under a blanket of stars.
21) Mary could only hope they’d return with enough volunteers to complete this new mission—the mission to defeat the Union.
22) She shook her head sadly. “Take him back to Parker,” she told the guards.
23) Mary gave an uncertain smile and with one solemn nod, vidsets across the city faded to black.
24) "...There are many ways a man can hide himself, and sometimes the best place to hide is in plain sight.”
25) She didn’t see the smile spread across Parker’s face.
26) “Russell’s… gone.”
27) THE END (I'm not giving away anything about the end of the book.)

So what about you? Are you good at hooks? Do you hook the ends or the beginnings?


ERiCA said...

Hey, that's more than 13. (teasing! *g) Looks like lots of great action! Thanks for posting. =)

#18! ??? So intriguing!

B.E. Sanderson said...

But hey, if you ignore THE END, then I've done thirteen doubled. ;o)

That #18 does come off a little weird out of context, huh?

Tia said...

I'm not dividing my latest book into chapters. I just occasionally throw in a day and time, thriller-style. I may change my mind before I start submitting it, however.

I thought yours sounded pretty good!