Hope. We give it to our characters and then take it away. In the blink of an eye, our characters go from hopeful to distraught.
I’ve been thinking about that particular way of writing. It has been happening in a lot of TV shows I watch and in the books I’ve been reading. The author has given these characters a slice of hope of escaping whatever torture they’re in. But, just like that, they take it away – and make them work through their hopelessness until something else that’s good and hopeful comes along. And then, they take that away too!
I do that with my writing. In fact, it adds something else to the story. It keeps putting them in troubling situations that they have to find their way out of.
I just think it’s cruel to the readers. ;)
I was reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth last week, and something like that happened in her book. A lot of somethings like that happened. I won’t write any spoilers, but I was so upset. My stomach was in knots, and I wanted to hunt down Veronica Roth and beg her for answers about why she would trick us like that! Seriously.
Eventually, it all made sense. Well, not all, because there is going to be another book, and she had to leave some things open ended. I get that. Doesn’t mean I’m happy about it though.
Back on topic here, is it cruel to give our readers that hope and then just take it away? Probably, but it’s a necessary evil I think. But, I may be wrong? What do you think? Is it cruel to give the readers hope and then take it away? Do you use this particular method in your writing? Do you think it gives that “edge of the seat” feeling to your stories?
Personally, I think it does. When something like that happens as I read, I literally cannot read it fast enough! So, maybe, it’s cruel, but it’s something that makes the story better.
I’d love to hear your opinion of what you think! Sound off in the comments below!