Great stories begin somewhere important. Somewhere catching. You want to draw the reader in within the first chapter. Better yet, within the first page or even sentence. Knowing exactly where that is, though, is the tricky part. We know where our characters being, where they are before that inciting incident. We know where we want them to end up. We think we know what the readers need to understand before any of that occurs. Most often, we’re wrong.
Stories don’t always begin at the beginning. Books often start right at the cusp of important things – and sometimes right in middle of those important things. That means the answer to this question is most often found at the end. Once you’ve finished that first draft, you can finally know, really, where a story needs to start.
Listen to this episode for more on how to identify a good beginning, tips for a strong start, and how to get past the need to know the start at the start.
First aired December 23, 2021.