We all love surprises… well, maybe only if they are nice surprises!

Here are five sudden surprises that are easy to get right in novels… two good, three not so good, but with tips so you can get them all right!

Good surprise 1: A twist in the tale. We like these!

Good surprise 2: An ending exceeding readers’ expectations. Big tick!

lady looking surprised

Not such good surprise 1: A character you didn’t think was in a scene suddenly speaks. Oh! How to get it right: Make sure readers know who is in a scene and who isn’t.

Not such good surprise 2: A piano suddenly appears near the end of the story. If you are going to have a piano, (or any other item of furniture/equipment we would have seen/known about if we’d been there) make sure it gets a mention when we would have first seen it.

Not such good surprise 3: Several chapters in, we discover the protagonist has long blonde hair… in our minds they were dark. How to get it right: Make sure you give us any descriptions early in the story!

I’m sure you get the gist of what I’m trying to say here. Sometimes we are so close to the story, it’s difficult for us to spot little anomalies like these, so do give your work to someone else to read, who can keep an eye out.

And if you were thinking of self-publishing, have your manuscript professionally edited; editors will see things that you won’t, and an untrained eye might not, either. It’s worth every penny!

Have you read something recently which surprised you, good or bad? Let us know!

Janet Wilson, founder of Dernier Publishing and Write for a Reason
Janet Wilson, founder of Dernier Publishing and Write for a Reason

And have a great week. Summer is here at last!

Every blessing to you all,



Sudden Surprises
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