Friday, January 16, 2015

Must Do List by C. Lee McKenzie

I'm thrilled to have C. Lee Mckenzie here as my guest today. She's going to share four things she's feels are necessary for those terrific books she writes. Don't forget to stop by her blog, TheWriteGame where you'll always find an interesting post and follow her on Twitter

Since I started writing, Ive collected a few Must Dos from the Get-Go. Heres some I have on my list:
1) My first scene must pull my reader into the story.

I think I started three stories with people traveling to a destination, staring into a mirror, studying. Why? Who knows? But now I really try to have them at their destinations, already in trouble or about to be in trouble. They never stare into the mirror.  :-(

2) At the start I must create questions the reader wants answered.

This is my favorite first line, but I havent written the story for it yet.

The first thing she did was hide the knife.
Like it?

3) Right away, the reader has to know a lot about my MC, and want to know more. In Sudden Secrets heres one place I tried to give the reader some insight into my MCs problem.

Mom was desperate to move. I was desperate to move, too, but not here. All I saw was a spooky, dangerous place.

4) The last line of chapter one must pull the reader into chapter two.

Heres the one from Sudden Secrets.

As we pulled away, I glanced out. A shadow flickered across the upstairs window of the vacant house. It was only a split second, but somebody moved inside that place. I was sure of it.

Those are my most important Must Dos. What are yours? I always like adding to my list.

 Sudden Secrets

 one Secret
            Cleo has struggled to heal after her baby sisters death, but the flashbacks to the accident wont go away. With the move, she vows to keep her tragedy a secret and avoid pitying looks.

one Mystery
Somethings strange about the abandoned house across the streetflashes of light late at night and small flickers of movement that only someone looking for them would see.
Everyone says the house is deserted, but Cleo is sure it isnt, and shes sure whoever is inside is watching her.

another Secret

In one night, Bellezas life changes forever. So famous, her only choice is to hide her secret from the world so she can silence small town bigotry.

Then Cleo happens.

Thanks for visiting, Lee. What do you think of her list? What would you add? Don't you love that name, Belleza? 


  1. Pulling people into the next chapter is something I'm still working on.

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Lee, and for the great advice.

  3. Great must do list. Seriously speaking, I am learning some ways to venture into writing a book that is captivating and enjoyable to the readers. Thanks for the post. It was informative.

  4. Great tips indeed, the knife would keep one intrigued for sure

  5. Excellent tips. And I really love that first line with the knife. It hooked me.

  6. Ah, yes. Hooks. You got to get them right into the chapter and leave the chapter with them wanting more. Good points.

    Sia McKye Over Coffee

  7. My editor told me about pulling reader into next chapter. Apparently I ended a chapter with a character nodding off to sleep. LOL won't do that again. Great list

  8. Oh yes I like it!! That first line would keep me reading for several pages.

  9. Some great tips. Thank you!

  10. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Lee!

  11. Ooh, this sounds spooky and interesting - and I concur with Lee's to-do list :)

  12. Very good list! Thanks for sharing with us. And I love the name!