Kayla Hicks - Author Kayla Hicks - Author

Happily Ever After

2 min read

Everyone loves a happily ever after, right? What my follow-up question is, does this always make for a good story? The reality is, not everything is perfect or goes according to plan. If this is the case, why should it be for the characters in your book?

These were some of the questions I asked myself as I started diving into the second book in my Series, An Outliers Tale.

In attempting to give the other books that extra umph, I sat down and truly gave this some thought. Here I was loving all of my characters because, let's admit it, after following them on their adventures throughout chapters and chapters of the story, they become your friends in a way. You wish the best for them, you want to protect them, and they sometimes make decisions you cannot understand.

As I reflected on my first book I realized that yes, the situation I gave them was awful, however, they didn’t lose anyone important to the story nor did they have anything detrimental happen to them other than what you expected. For the book in my Outliers Series, I would really need to shake things up. What did that mean?

Yes, I loved the characters I created. Yes, I needed to add some turmoil. Yes, this broke my heart.

To do so, I looked at the following areas to hone in on:

  1. Who could the story go on without? : Yes, you have the main characters to who you and your readers will inevitably grow attached. This also got me thinking, which ones could the story stand to lose or could the story be better without?

  2. What is going too well? : I realized with my first book that even though the world fell apart, the characters were probably not as affected as they could have been. This made me really take a second look at my characters in the second book. How did the events that took place change them? What would this mean for them going forward?

  3. What would keep my readers wanting more? : Whenever a writer writes a story, it is with some intent to entertain the reader and not only themselves. This also means that you will even have to take your story to a place that would surprise your readers or even make them a little angry. This is what good writing is, something that makes your readers think as well as wants to know what is coming next.

Well, I hope that these few thoughts can help you on your writing journey. What is something that you did to shake up your story?