I don’t think I need to explain why it’s important to get your readers hooked after the first chaper, or even after the first page, if possible. If you’ve put all of your time, energy, and effort into writing a novel, it’s no secret that you want to make sure others read it in its entirety!
That’s why we have a really helpful video today from a successful, published author of YA sci-fi. Vivien walks us through her checklist of 5 things to have in your first chapter to really hook readers and get them to turn those pages!
The first tip is to decide what is important. Seems like a no-brainer, right? You’d be surprised at how many first chapters completely leave out any elements of the theme or set up! Instead, they opt for shock like the now-cliche opening of a dream sequence. Make sure you know what is important to your genre, to your story, and to your characters!
The second tip is to lead with a little mystery. Once you have your novel outlined, you can pick up certain elements you know you’ll get to later in the story, and start teasing them out in the first chapter. The example we’re given in the video below is about flying. You might not want to divulge the secret that your main character can fly, so instead, talk about their fear of heights. That way, we we learn they can fly, there’s tension built right in! Go ahead and what other tips there are in this video below!