Have you ever heard someone tell a story that was some version of “I got up, got dressed, had a fun day and then I went to bed.” No character (well, not much) no plot, no climax.

And no interest.

When you tell a story, orally or in print, you are creating a relationship between yourself and the people listening or reading.  In this relationship you are promising you have something worthwhile to share. You have something of value to tell them.

They, in turn, will listen or read. Or at least they will start to listen or read. If they are listening it would be rude to turn away but they can start focusing on something more interesting in their own mind.  If they are reading they can simply close the book or click on a different web page. Either way, they’re gone.

A story that keeps its readers has:

– a character they can care about

– action or movement

– a climax that has a measure of suspense.

I know, it’s all basic stuff. You’ve heard it before. But go on, check some of your recent stories. How can you strengthen the characters, the action, the climax?