I need particular help in something. I have no idea how to start a story. Numerous questions keep clogging my mind like, Should I write a prologue? Should I use the overly used words, Once upon a time? Should I start a story with the words, Imagine if and write with powerful imagery to make the readers get hooked to the story? I need some tips on how to start Chapter 1, a Prologue, Words to hook the reader and more.
Currently, I plan to create a simple short story with an internal conflict. If you wish to know the plot, than basically it's a person fighting with his inner demons. It can be interpreted as a story about guilt and sadness.
Personally, I want to hook the readers to my story. I want them to be able to take the life lessons apparent in my short story. Thus, I also need help invoking emotions in my story. I mean, I know how to create characters which is to work on his personality and more importantly, his flaws.
Tl:dr? Basically, I request some thoughts and opinions on how to invoke emotions in a short story and good ways to hook the reader at the prologue or chapter 1.
The best way to hook readers in the beginning is backstory. Give the character a backstory that'll bring emotion.
I don't think it's the best way. :/ Dumping the backstory on the reader isn't very good. It's like: "This is what happened. Notice me senpai~"
Well obviously it sounds stupid when you write it like that. I'm talking about telling it at some point in part 1 or something, not the very first page.
"The best way to hook readers in the beginning is backstory" - MinnieKing
Notice the underline. "Hook" typically refers to the beginning, and you even wrote "in the beginning" to reinforce that idea.
EDIT: I like what Ogre11 said.
In the beginning doesn't have to refer to the very first part.
Oh look, Crescentstar is pointing out that MinnieKing is being retarded. Cool. I love it when the children discipline each other.
Oh hey look, it's Steve.
Every fucking time
Guess that's me, the awesomest retard ever.
Yes, you did spell it right
Personally, I agree with you that Minnie is kind of right, just didn't answer my question clearly.
@Crescentstar (I think I spelled it correctly) I plan to make my readers feel the atmosphere in the story greatly. Along with world building and all, I believe it's a little hard to make readers feel for the characters in the story and get moved at the end of the story. It's actually quite hard to get readers to feel an emotion in a story because of the lack of graphics... that is, unless the emotion is a negative emotion like sadness and anger. Do you have any tips on how to make readers care for your protagonist, side characters and how to make them get touched by the story?
Yes, I know that I should put flaws. MrMustachio made an interesting point. This is what he said, "It's one thing to know your character's personality, strengths and flaws, but it's another to know how to incorporate those aspects of your character into a story in which the reader will be taught a life lesson." Maybe to invoke emotions than I should do that?
Emotions in the dialogue of the story? Wouldn't the actions of the protagonist be much more touching than that? No? Alright.
Yeah, it really shouldn't be hard, as Mizal said. Like, it shouldn't be in anyway harder than with graphics.
Thank god he's not blind.
Yeah, because as we know, blind people are not human.
Definitely not. The wise words of BlueSabere
No, he's not right, and yes, he's being retarded.
How are you describing your character? It's one thing to know your character's personality, strengths and flaws, but it's another to know how to incorporate those aspects of your character into a story in which the reader will be taught a life lesson.
Also, do you have anything done for the story that you can present?
Yeah, Ogre seems to know what he's talking about. Listen to him.
John Wick is a fantastic example of that. The world should feel worn-in; people have been living in it, after all.
Thank you everyone for all your tips and opinions about the subject! I just want to clarify the fact that I am gonna do a short CYOA, sorry for not clarifying that. Although, some tips still did help me out like Mizal's and Ogre's.
Anyways, I'm gonna start the story. Just a question, if I were to write a motivational thread, should I write about it in a separate thread or in another post here?
Use change. Humans respond to a sudden change or the unexpected more than any other stimuli (for we are learning creatures by nature, and novel experiences intrigue us).
A sudden chase in a thriller (too many to count) / a shot of a planet followed by a gigantic star destroyer or a frenetic space battle (all the star wars movies, after a calm opening text crawl) / an unexpected or startling or seemingly unnatural setting (Inception) are all examples of change (and surprising events). These opening events are doubly helpful as they give you a major story point to resolve in your work (what happened, why did it happen), and can hook an audience looking for an explanation (we need to finish that movie! What happened to the droids? Who was sending that message? Why?).
In your particular work, the person could be in the middle of a standoff, or standing at the edge of a cliff, or in some other unexpected circumstance. Use that change from the normal to get an early hook in.