Margaret Mayo, Romance Author


Shaken not stirred

We had a lovely week with our grandson, taking him to different places – he’s such a joy to be with and we’re making the most of it because we know that when he gets a bit older (he’s going on thirteen) he won’t want to come out with us. But actually I was fortunate to be with him at all. I was on my way to pick him up, waiting to turn right, conscious when I slowed down that there was a car in the distance behind me. All of a sudden, just as the road in front was clear and I was about to turn, I felt an almighty bang on my back end. For a moment I couldn’t think what was happening. I was shunted across the road onto a grassy area and narrowly missed a tree. The driver of the car following me had applied his brakes but because the road was wet his car didn’t stop.

To say I was shaken is an understatement. But I wasn’t hurt, which is the main thing. And nor was the other driver. My car’s pretty sick but still driveable. His had to be taken away on a tow truck. This was my first ever accident in 45 years of driving. I’m just glad it wasn’t my fault.

I read an interesting article in Romance Matters (The Romantic Novelists Association quarterly magazine) about chapter endings. The aim of a chapter ending is to make the reader want to read on and in Sarah Duncan’s article she said that she loved it when people complained that one of her books had kept them awake long after they intended, so compelling was the need to read just one more chapter.

One of my nieces once said to me that she wished I’d make my chapters shorter, because she liked to finish a chapter before turning out the light. (Do we all read in bed at night?) Actually in my earlier books the chapters were longer, so I took on board what she said.

In the article Sarah Duncan also said that she never puts her novels into chapters until the final draft, which means she has to finish every scene end with a page-turner – just in case!

It’s an interesting take on chapter endings. What does anyone else think?

Posted in News, Views & Personal Updates


Content copyright © 2006-2014 Margaret Mayo

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