- Use big words such as ascertained, vociferously, quintessence, and prolix. Fancy words equal fancy writing.
(You had to look that last word up, didn’t you? That’s why I linked to it, my friend. Thank me later.)
- Keep your paragraphs short. People will think the book moves faster that way.
- Always describe a character’s personality before they have any dialogue, that way the reader doesn’t have to work so hard through the rest of the novel.
- Always end your novel with a twist. You know they’re going to buy the next one just to see what happens, even if they don’t really care whether or not Emma survived her fall down the elevator shaft of the evil gnome’s office building.
- Give your characters names that are hard to remember, like Garthea (oh, wait…that’s my main character’s name), or Dremblem. Even if they hate the book, they’ll consistently open it up again just to remind themselves.
Believe me, they’ll be too distracted trying to think of it that they’ll be forced to. And no one wants to watch Inception thinking, “What the hell was the main character’s name in that crap-fest of a book? Damn it, that’s gonna drive me nuts. Wait – what did Leo just say?”
- Always open your story with a dream. Readers will think: Here’s an author willing to dive straight into the murky territory that is the unconscious. They’ll respect you for it. Trust me.
- Make sure that you explain every detail of the scenery, otherwise the reader will think you don’t care.
- Verbs are good. Adverbs are better. They show you’re willing to put in the extra effort.
- Keep your chapters short. The reader will feel a lot more accomplished having read 100 chapters, rather than a measly 13 by the time they’re finished.
- Always make sure that the title of your novel ends up being spoken or written in the narrative itself.
If your book title is I’m Going to Fall Down an Elevator Shaft, make sure Emma says, “I’m going to fall down an elevator shaft” before she does.
Can you say goosebumps? (In a hushed voice, your reader will say: “It’s like the author knew Emma was going to fall down the elevator shaft when she titled her novel!”).
Any other suggestions for the list? Comments welcome!