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How dark a moment do you like?

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message 1: by JanetTronstad (last edited Mar 03, 2010 12:43PM) (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
In a usual romance novel (and most books) there is a moment when all seems lost. This happens before everything is restored. I am plotting my next few books and wondering how deep of a down dip I need. Do you have a preference for the 'totally everything looks hopeless' or do you prefer a medium problem which is then resolved?


Petticoats and Pistols | 1 comments Dark, bad, really dark and bad. :-)


message 3: by Ausjenny (new)

Ausjenny | 4919 comments not really sure but I have found in some books its very predictable something bad happens about 10 - 20 pages before the end of the book. Depends what the definition of dark is. Things that build up are good. moments that seem to be there just to fill the book or you are looking for are not good. I have just noticed this year a couple books I was waiting for it to be over to get things back to right. Ie they had a issues where one couldn't forgive or forget something from the past and you were waiting for them to get a wakeup call. Those moments can be drawn out but when its action or something it can really be cool.


message 4: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments I think it depends on the issue. If you look at Karen Kingsbury or Francine Rivers, they can get dark and hopeless, but sometimes the expected ending doesn't happen. Or there are lessons learned along the way before the perfect ending can happen. Some people can handle dark scenes, others can. I usually like to see how authors push the envelope. :D If it's challenge for them to write and I can tell, then I know they've done a good job.


message 5: by JanetTronstad (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
Petticoats and Pistols wrote: "Dark, bad, really dark and bad. :-)"

Welcome, Petticoats and Pistols -- Great to see you here. I love your blog!


message 6: by JanetTronstad (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
Ausjenny -- I think you're right. The most dramatic dark moments are physical ones -- where the heroine is tied to the railroad tracks and the train in rounding the bend and the reader sees that the engineer is not looking ahead -- then at the last possible moment the hero arrives on the scene and rescues the heroine.


message 7: by JanetTronstad (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
Jennifer -- the unexpected is generally good.


message 8: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments I sometimes thing emotionally dark moments can have a greater impact on the physical ones. Especially if it's a power struggel between forgiving yourself of something in your past, or something the Lord is revealing to that person that He doesn't particularly like in them at that moment. The struggle against the flesh verse spiritual things is what makes it so much more involved. If you look at the book of Hosea, or at David's life, you see the struggles of the flesh and the fact that they both can't come to terms with the forgiveness freely offered and seek worldly pleasure for the moment. In the end, utter destruction is their ruin and until they hit the pit, only then do they see the unconditional love and forgiveness, and then surrender to what God has in store.


message 9: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments Hopefully, that made since! I was totally just free writing that!


message 10: by JanetTronstad (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
It made absolute sense Jennifer -- and I think you're right. Whether physical or emotional or spiritual (as I'd put some of your examples) they all work really well.


message 11: by Heidi (new)

Heidi | 985 comments I don't like anything too dark or hopeless. I am, as I am sure all of you already know, lol ;), an escapism reader. Sure I like a twist, a bit of a quandary, some hard times, a bit of sorrow is OK; in fact I think a novel needs those things. I just don't like those elements to dominate the story. I have to have my happy ending too I confess. I like to finish a book with a smile on my face :)


message 12: by Carla (new)

Carla Capshaw (carlacapshaw) | 987 comments Mod
I like to start off a book with a dark moment and then let the rest of book build to the Happily Ever After (which is the main reason I like to read Romance in the first place). My darker/ish moments don't need to be an action or whatever, they just need to make me or readers wonder how things can possibly work out. I like the ending to be a surprise and be a total "awwwww..." moment.
:-)


message 13: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments Carla wrote: "I like to start off a book with a dark moment and then let the rest of book build to the Happily Ever After (which is the main reason I like to read Romance in the first place). My darker/ish mome..."

I've had an awwww moment everytime I've read yours and Janet's! :D


message 14: by Ausjenny (new)

Ausjenny | 4919 comments You know I love the books where it builds up or starts at the beginning. I dont mind them but I have read a few books recently where it happens around 15 pages from the end and I was looking for it.
I prefer it to happen natually where you are not waiting for the other shoe to drop so to speak.
Some books you just know something is going to happen and I have checked how much more I have to read knowing it will happen. Its not alot of books just a few.


message 15: by Carla (new)

Carla Capshaw (carlacapshaw) | 987 comments Mod
Jennifer wrote: "Carla wrote: "I like to start off a book with a dark moment and then let the rest of book build to the Happily Ever After (which is the main reason I like to read Romance in the first place). My d..."

***Awwwww...thanks, Sugar! :-)


message 16: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments Ausjenny wrote: "You know I love the books where it builds up or starts at the beginning. I dont mind them but I have read a few books recently where it happens around 15 pages from the end and I was looking for it..."

Very true! I do the same thing. Drives me nuts when they do it at the very end and there's no anticipation or build up.


message 17: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments Carla wrote: "Jennifer wrote: "Carla wrote: "I like to start off a book with a dark moment and then let the rest of book build to the Happily Ever After (which is the main reason I like to read Romance in the fi..."

No Prob! You know I'm one of your biggest fans! ;) Hehehe


message 18: by Melody (new)

Melody | 2493 comments I don't care how dark a moment, I love suspense and adventure all through a book, but only if there's a happy sigh, awwwww, kind of ending. I am like Heidi and happy endings are a must for me! :) I hate it also when things "work out" on the last page. Give me at least a few of the cute stuff. :)


message 19: by JanetTronstad (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
I hear you, Melody -- my sister is still upset with Louis L'Amour because in one of his books he didn't really end it, he just had the hero get on his horse and ride out of the situation (no resolution, nothing). Don't know if he had reached a maximum amount of words or what happened. Of course, that being said, she's still mad at him for dying, too, as she wants him to still be writing.


message 20: by Ausjenny (new)

Ausjenny | 4919 comments Thats how I felt watching the Man from Snowy River it didn't end really at all and it annoyed me know end


message 21: by Heidi (last edited Mar 06, 2010 09:16PM) (new)

Heidi | 985 comments Melody wrote: "I don't care how dark a moment, I love suspense and adventure all through a book, but only if there's a happy sigh, awwwww, kind of ending. I am like Heidi and happy endings are a must for me! :) I..."

I know what you mean Melody. I want a a chapter or two of happy in the end, not just for the last page to be my happy ending!


message 22: by JanetTronstad (new)

JanetTronstad Author Tronstad | 2758 comments Mod
Heidi and Melody -- that's one reason I often have epilogues. It carries on the Happy Part a bit longer.


message 23: by Heidi (new)

Heidi | 985 comments Janet Tronstad wrote: "Heidi and Melody -- that's one reason I often have epilogues. It carries on the Happy Part a bit longer."

That's a great way to do it Janet. I really like it when a book has an epilogue, especially if it helps the happy ending last a bit longer :)


message 24: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments Janet Tronstad wrote: "Heidi and Melody -- that's one reason I often have epilogues. It carries on the Happy Part a bit longer."

I love epilogues!


message 25: by Melody (new)

Melody | 2493 comments And I thank you for your epilogues Janet! I love them! :) I'm glad I am not the only one who likes more of the happy stuff.
I'm still mad at J.k. Rowling for killing Sirius. He was my favorite, so I understand your sister completely. :)


message 26: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer (jennafraugh) | 4102 comments Melody wrote: "And I thank you for your epilogues Janet! I love them! :) I'm glad I am not the only one who likes more of the happy stuff.
I'm still mad at J.k. Rowling for killing Sirius. He was my favorite, s..."


Ah hahahaha! Glad I wasn't the only one.


message 27: by Melody (new)

Melody | 2493 comments Not at all. :)


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