Writing Advice for Writing a Killer Plot Twist
What makes a good book? There is no particular formula to making it a good book. All you need is to become a good writer who adds something to the genre. You can take readers on a ride of a lifetime, making your book stick in their minds for a long time. With that said, you must spark new directions in your story. Straight linear paths when narrating your story may come off as boring to some readers. Going for a monotonous monorail feel in your story will become predictable for readers. However, giving it a ‘twist of fate’ changes readers’ perspectives. Plot twists provide them with something new to think about. Good writers know how to use their advantage crafting narratives that will surprise the audience and make them review critical points of the story. A suspense love story by Patricia Sims, A Major Hurdle, is an excellent example of a novel with a killer plot twist. Check out how the story took a turn from the worst to the best. You may get ideas on how well Sims spiced up the mystery romance story with a killer plot twist.
A bad plot twist comes with no warning and abruptly make changes to the story. This still shocks readers, but not in a good way. This makes them wonder what is going on. Thus, here is some advice to help you write a killer plot twist that comes as a wonderful surprise for many.
Let the Character Discover the Plot Twist
Plot twists commonly appear near the end of the narrative. You have to put a lot of thought into how you’re going to uncover the twist that will grip your readers’ attention. Sometimes, when you put a lot of thinking into it, it becomes a dry narrative. Most authors use narration to describe and build up the major plot twist. However, to avoid monotonous monorail, make use of your character. Stop from consciously creating twists and turns, and let the protagonist guide the story instead. Allow that character to discover the plot twist organically. Have the main character uncover facts that will instigate a twist ending. For instance, exposing someone who was supposed to be dead was actually alive; or uncovering the fact that someone was not who he/she may be.
Stepping back enables you to let go of your train of thoughts and inhibitions. Write conversations and scenarios freely and see where the characters take you. This can take your story in a direction you never expected. And when it is unexpected for you, then without a doubt, it will be more of a surprise to the readers.
Be Subtle With It
Scenarios and conversations build up plot twists; however, this should not be obvious to readers. When sliding information in front of the perceiving eyes of your readers, being subtle plays a part. Subtle in terms of misdirection, redirection, and foreshadowing. This creates the overwhelming surprise you have for your readers.
People believed that there is magic when in actuality, a magician uses subtle misdirection to cause you to look in the wrong direction when his other hand is doing something. This is what a magician and writer have in common.
Aim for the readers to think they know where the story is going, then subvert them into the notion you have in mind. Gently guide them away from the plot you have in mind, making it all more surprising when you reveal the story’s gripping twist. Being subtle is the key to misguide readers, or else they’ll recognize your trick. On top of everything else, bury clues in plain sight. This is a technique called foreshadowing, which is essential to precede a killer plot twist. Strike a balance of giving enough details to make a plausible twist but still hiding some truths to come as a surprise.
Eliminate the Obvious
Think of an unexpected ending or occurrence that even seasoned readers will not predict. Discard every possible, obvious solution and clue for the protagonist to succeed. Creating an unforeseen ending, not one of your readers can guess how the conclusion will happen. In this process, you have to be in the shoes of the reader. Reread your narrative and observe if the clue was too obvious. If it is, then discard it. The goal is to keep readers guessing, and when all are revealed, they must have an ‘aha!’ moment. They must finally come to it and exclaim how it all makes perfect sense. The more impossible the situation to overcome, the more believable the solution needs to be.
Make Plot Twist Clever
The point of the plot twist is to catch readers off guard. And for that to happen, setting up and planning the plot twist must be executed properly. Plot twists must make sense, or it simply won’t work. It must be organic and fits the story. It will take your readers in another direction, not to another destination. Have fun scribbling your plot twist; every genre has a matching plot twist. A plot twist affects your reader. Hence, you have to cleverly use your plot twist by using the story’s constraints to extract an exciting turn of events. Let your readers assume that everything you are leading them to is correct, but soon you will twist their expectations.