Monday, May 10, 2010

YES MAASS

OMG!
I’m pretty sure I’m  going to “nationals” in July!
Woo Hoo, Yee Ha!
And by “nationals” I mean The RWA National convention (now in Orlando).
It’ll be my first time at this particular conference venue.
An exciting, thrilling, and tense (pitch time) four days for sure.
And one of the speakers scheduled is Donald Maass…
That great and mighty New York agent.
Having read (and recommend) his books, The Career Novelist, and The Breakout Novel
And having heard him speak at another writer’s conference…
I know Mr. Maass likes tension…
I won’t explain what he means here (you gotta read his books)…
But it seems tension is something we all crave.
Saturday night…
Babysitting my three grandkids…
“Grandma! Can we watch a movie?”
“Sure. Which one?”
The Mummy!”
“Oh, I don’t think–“
“Mommy and daddy let us.”
“Really?”
“Yeah we’ve seen it lots of times.”
“Well, OK.”
Fifteen minutes later, baby’s in bed for the night…
And my two granddaughters, five and seven…
Are curled up on my lap shaking…
“I thought you already saw this movie?”
“We have.”
“Then why are you so scared?”
“Because it’s scary!”
“Maybe we should watch The Princess and the Frog?”
“No! We like to be scared!”
“Well, OK, if you like being scared.”
“Grandma watch…
“Here’s…
The…
Scary…
Part…
When the…
“AHHHAAA!”
“Told you so, Grandma. Scary huh?”
“Yes, very scary. And don’t tell mommy that I screamed, OK?”
On the way home, I realized that while my W.I.P…
Is not horror, suspense, or even a thriller…
(I’m writing women’s lit)
I do need to ratchet up the tension (per Mr. Maass)…
But not the kind of tension where I’m scaring the bejeebers out of the reader…
Just the kind of tension where the reader…
Can't…
Turn…
The page…
Fast enough
To see… 
What…
Happens…
Next.

Always, Em-Musing

1 comment:

Connie Phillips said...

Great post, Em. And I'm excited that you will be coming to Nationals too. It's going to be a great time. I've yet to hear Maas speak in person, and I'm excited. I loved "Writing the Breakout Novel".