My critique partner, Jenn Windrow, now teaches a class called “How to Be a Hooker,” which shows writers how to write an exciting hook for your book…basically the first 50-150 words. Catch your reader in those first few words, and they will hopefully keep reading. The idea is to lead with a hook. Something that gets the reader thinking, asks a question, or presents a challenge that the reader wants to figure out.
Back in the fall, I entered a contest for the first 50 words put on by the Ruby Slipper Sisterhood and Jenn helped me polish my entry. Below is our text conversation where I gave her intros and she gave me feedback, and I think it’s very insightful. At the end of this post, you can read the final version.
And here’s what I finally came up with:
Seven years ago, Nate Kinlan, Earl of Rainsford, left the house in which he now stood, forced to abandon an inexperienced young lady to the vagaries of her dishonest uncle. Tonight, he’d face her again. There at the table, her dark, upswept hair shining in the candlelight, sat Susannah Cressingham. His best friend’s sister. The woman he betrayed. The woman he must now marry to keep safe.
If only he could convince her not to kill him first.
So, what do you think is necessary to make a hooker-worthy intro? And what did you think of mine? Would you keep reading?