Cliff Hanging, a Dangerous Business

15 Dec


I have been a long time follower of the Alyson Noël’s series “Evermore”. I have just started the most recent book in the series called Night Star that was released earlier this month. For anyone who has read the series you know that it is a story about Ever Bloom (always loved the name) and her dealings with her thousand-year old alchemist boyfriend, and how difficult their love has been to find and maintain. In every book the plot “thickens” if you will, and at the end of each book another question is always raised. A cliff hanger. And these books have inspired today’s blog post.

Now, I am about to rip on Alyson Noël a little bit. It’s nothing personal, and believes me I LOVE her writing, and the Evermore series, but I’m going to talk about her use of the “cliff hanger.” For me her writing always leaves me feeling like the book should have ended … better. Ever never seems to make any choice that moves the plot in a “happier” direction. And every time I finish one it seems like she will never be able to be with Damien. And quite frankly I have begun to hate Ever. Not the series. Ever.

I guess what I’m trying to get to here is that writing needs a good measure of give and take. It seem like Alyson is just beating up on poor Damien, by using naïve, gullible Ever to do her bidding. I’ve found that a good rule of thumb is two steps forward, one step back, and Alyson’s policy seems to be one step forward one mile back! ERRRRRR Ever just angers me! Of course this course of action has obviously brought her readers, and keeps them hooked to her books, but then again the series is frustrating because nothing ever ends right. Things just get worse and worse.

*Please excuse the very long drawn out metaphor I’m about to type. *

So I was thinking about the whole give and take thing while I was reading her book and trying to think how I could apply it to my own writing and I began thinking about how a good book is like the ocean. It should be deep , and should contain a variety of themes and sub plots like all the underlying currents and sand bars, that should exist but still blend with the “big picture”. And most importantly the plot should ebb and flow just like the waves hitting the shore. Give and take. Ying and Yang. Etc.

Alyson’s books kind of remind me of a tsunami, something that you don’t see very often, but that surely exists and can be quite awe-inspiring when done correctly, but can also put a lot of readers off your beach if it occurs too often, if you know what I mean. All I’m saying is that I think we need to consider how we are treating our characters. What we allow them to have, and what we take away from them. Did that metaphor make any sense? If not I give you my full permission to disregard it!

Till Next time friends. ❤


2 Responses to “Cliff Hanging, a Dangerous Business”

  1. wovenstrands January 30, 2011 at 7:52 pm #

    I agree. I haven’t read her last book yet but its on my to read list. So far writers who have captured my absolute and full attention with their books are Stephanie Meyer and Cassandra Clare. Their books have the balance I look forward to in a story.

    • nkeda14 January 31, 2011 at 11:18 pm #

      Yes I would agree. Have you read Meyer’s The Host? It’s amazing. One of my all time favorites. I read constatnly and have some how made time to read that book 5 times! That’s saying something since I rarely read anything twice. Noel just strikes me as over kill with the suspense.

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