What If?

Early in my road to writing, author and teacher Alton Gansky taught me to ask a magic question: “What if?” One of his books began when he noted the presence of a military installation in a deserted location and asked himself, “What if that base suddenly disappeared?” The result was an excellent book. And it began with one question: What if?

I still recall my frustration with author and editor Jeff Gerke when I sat with him at a writing conference and showed him the outline of my novel. Each time I described a turn of the story, he came back with, “So what?” Finally, it came through to me. I couldn’t just write about everyday stuff. The reader had to be invested in what happened, had to know that if certain things did or did not take place, there would be consequences. Thus, I learned to ask myself, “So what?” Click here to read more.


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