So yesterday my amazing writer friend Jordan McCollum posted on her blog about "Tension Check" and she included a link to a scene chart. As I looked it over, and read her reasons for using it (she's a lot more organized writer than I am and I know I'll never keep up) but in this case I decided I was going to use it.
As a suspense writer, I want to keep my tension building throughout the book, but I also want that balanced with believability and character growth. It's a tall order to fill. Yet, even just doing the scene chart with my first four chapters I've noticed places that I can add one more layer and change a character's goals. It has been so helpful. (Click here for the scene chart I grabbed from Jordan's site.)
The more I write/publish the more I learn about the craft of writing and I really feel like I'm improving with every book. Tension is huge for a suspense writer, and I try to be very aware of it in my writing. I once had a reader tell me they were absolutely exhausted when they were finished reading one of my books. I think that's a good thing, overall, but there also has to be a bit of downtime and depth. Hence the reason why I am moving away from my pantser habits and becoming the perfect candidate for using a scene chart in my chapters.
So, that's what I'm working on this week. Do you have something similar to a scene chart that's helped you in your writing?