Readers crave stories with a twist tips for writing great plot twists – kristen lamb

If you took out the Statue of Liberty at the end of The Planet of the Apes, it would still be a terrific story about a world of intelligent apes oppressing unintelligent humans. If Dr. Crowe in The Sixth Sense wasn’t really dead, the story would still be a fascinating study of a therapist trying to help a very troubled and gifted boy (not as great, but the story would hold up). The twist shouldn’t trick your reader.

Come up with all kinds of ideas, crazy and logical. Sometimes the crazy idea, with a little work, is the best. But, again, it has to be believable. If a character is going to flat-out lie, he needs to be the kind of character who would do that. Or if not, he needs a very good reason to lie—perhaps someone is holding a gun to his daughter’s head.


If you are going to have a surprise character be the killer at the end of your mystery, you’ll need a half-dozen or so moments, at minimum, in your story with that character, setting up subtle hints as to her nature, interests, and behavior that will make your readers say at the end, “Oh, of course!” and still be delighted that they didn’t figure it out. Thanks so much!

C.S. Lakin is a writing coach, copyeditor, and author of thirty books, fiction and nonfiction. She blogs at Live Write Thrive, helping writers on their writing journey, and teaches online courses for writers at Enroll in her new course, The Ten Key Scenes to Frame Up Your Novel, before August 20, 2018 to get half off the regular price! I love hearing from you!

What do you WIN? For the month of JULY, for everyone who leaves a comment, I will put your name in a hat. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the hat twice. What do you win? The unvarnished truth from yours truly. I will pick a winner once a month and it will be a critique of the first 20 pages of your novel, or your query letter, or your synopsis (5 pages or less). NEW CLASSES!

Done well? We get the dangerous thrill of skidding close to the edge of moral insanity, looking through a mirror darkly and seeing ourselves and our neighbors, and a hyper-creative outlet that combines the dubious fun of post-apocalyptic totalitarianism (zombies optional) with chilling truths about human nature. Topics covered in this class include:

Cait Reynolds is a USA Today Bestselling Author and lives in Boston area with her husband and neurotic dog. She discovered her passion for writing early and has bugged her family and friends with it ever since. She likes history, science, Jack Daniels, jewelry, pasta, and solitude. Not all at the same time. When she isn’t enjoying the rooftop deck that brings her closer to the stars, she writes.

This class is to remove the fear factor and clarify what selling entails for the professional author. Not all products are sold the same way…which is why there are no late-night infomercials hawking Hadron Colliders or F-16 fighter jets. Our sales approach must align with the product we’re selling, or we’re doomed before we begin. This class will cover: