This one time at Writer's Camp…
Yes, I’m writing. Not just on the blog, either. I feel all accomplished and everything today. Yeah, I could be writing more, but personally I’d rather have clean clothes so I’m in the midst of doing laundry. Which means I’m not entirely focused on writing, which is an excellent time to think about plot hooks.
Well Jason, you say as you sip your glass of ice water and stare at the oddly lit monitor, you don’t know a damned thing about plot hooks.
To which I say “Yeah, so?”
It’s strange for me, as a writer, to be so bad with the English language. I literally had to look up what a plot hook was one day when someone told me that I had a great plot hook early on in Corruptor. I mean, separately I know what the words mean. But for some reason, when you jam them together, my brain gets all weird and starts to over think just about everything. So let’s just show how a plot hook works.
On one otherwise normal Tuesday evening I had the chance to live the American dream. I was able to throw my incompetent jackass of a boss from a fourteenth-story window. — Larry Correia, pg 1, Monster Hunter International. That, ladies and gentlemen, is how a plot hook works. You snag them on the first paragraph and shake them like a terrier does to a wet rat. They either squeal (with joy… trust me, it’s joy) or try to get away as fast as they can (only because they can’t take the pure awesomeness that is… you know what? This has got to be the worst analogy in the history of mankind).
But that grabs you, doesn’t it? It makes you sit up and say “The hell is going on here?”, which is exactly what novel is supposed to do. It grabs you and takes you for a ride. It doesn’t have to be in the first sentence, but it better be in the first chapter somewhere, otherwise your reader is going to say “Eh…” and toss your book aside for the latest release from an author they know.
So what are some recent stories you’ve read with (or without) a plot hook?