Sunday, November 14, 2010

It Bleeds...14 Nov. '10

And that is called the hook. The hook gets the reader’s interest. While the 'It' is undefined, the 'Bleeds' sets up a red flag -- not to be coy or a pun. Okay, what It are we talking about? A person or animal can roughly be defined as an It, as well as an alien or entity, or even a plant. This gives a mystery, the reader may not care about the It that much but the Bleeds indicates -- almost anything.

When I looked, only two wings were out on it, bright as a glass bead of fire, veined and elliptical framing the pale lilac tongue. Last night I left it so, I shut off the light and dismissed it from my mind. Today, four more of the orange wings had emerged, tearing silently through the green skin. Amber beads wept and dripped and stilled as they dried. I never thought of it, being so dissimilar a being, glorious, exotic in some parts of the world but common here. I never knew the Bird of Paradise could bleed into beauty.

How long do you want this mystery to last? That depends on the story. Ideally one hook should catch, and lead to another, and another as the writer keeps drawing the reader on. The writer doesn't have to make all the characters likable, but they must keep the reader's interest, keep those questions coming.

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