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My Blog SCRIBBLE AND EDIT reflects my love of creative writing, design, literature and film. Check out my Poems & haiku, Romantic Flash Fiction; Blogfest Entries; Blog Awards and other prose and Flash Fiction. Do bear with me, as I will reciprocate with those genuine commenters on my blog.  BTW I sometimes withhold comments for challenges until later. Comments about the post are much appreciated. Thank you.
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Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Baptism by Prologue


I admit I was never a fan of Prologues in novels. They always seemed an unknown quantity and rather an annoying digression before the real story began.

The more I read, the more I realised that a good prologue is so much more.

Having just written beyond the FPP in the novel I’m writing, I realised that it was exactly what I needed for it.  So I researched it some more and considered the criteria. As I understand it then a Prologue should:

• Start with a compelling first line, from an unnamed character's viewpoint

• hook the reader in, cutting to the chase and introducing a vital story question

• sketch in some backstory quickly and economically

• convince the reader to keep turning the pages to find out the answer, without giving too much away

• never be an excerpt that is repeated later in the story


Then I had a go and ‘Hey Presto’

A grin split across my face like a cleaved melon!

It seemed just perfect!
I am so excited, I'm beside myself...

Are you averse to the idea of prologues? Do you include them in your novels?

The best article I read since on the subject was by Adrian Magson in Writing Magazine who contributed to my change of heart. It’s got some very good information about when Prologues are appropriate and what should be included in them.