As writers we want our audience to be fired up about the next chapter. We drop little hints that make the reader say “Now that’s interesting, I wonder where it leads,” we’ll create a subplot to increase the stakes or we’ll drop a bombshell at the end of the chapter. Whatever technique we use, it’s to get our readers turning the page.
Sometimes though, we forget about that connective tissue that ties our plot together or drives it forward and it falls by the wayside. This can result in plot holes, confusion, or basically a sense that the work is incomplete.
I recently read a book that had so many interesting bombshells, but those dynamic moments were never developed or even brought up again. It’s a shame because aside from that the book is excellent.
When editing your own work, have a proper outline, get fresh beta readers, make sure you tie up your lose ends. If you’ve added something just to increase word count that you don’t really want to develop, instead see where you can revise what you feel is relevant to maintain the quality of your work.
“Sara opened the black decaying box. The smell was putrid and maggots crawled along the cracks. When she pried open the lid, there was a photo of her mother!
Sara went to school the next day and lead her cheer squad to win the championship.
That will not do. Whatever you bother to write must have meaning.