The Art Of Seduction: Does Your Writing Engage And Enthrall?

With so many books and articles published every year, writers have had to up their game. It’s no longer enough to write something good; you have to seduce readers in a way that gets them intimately involved with your narrative. It doesn’t matter whether you’re writing fiction or something else—seduction is the name of the game.

Think about your own experiences. There have probably been times in your life when you’ve started reading a book, only to yawn after a few pages and wonder why you ever picked it up in the first place. Long-winded introductions, poorly constructed characters, and long sentences can all take the charm out of a book.

The trick to getting people’s attention isn’t so much in what you write, or even how well you write, but whether or not you create a desire in them. There has to be a reason for them to continue reading—whether it’s to discover a secret formula for losing weight, what’s going to happen to a key character, or how to do something they’ve always wanted to do. Emotions drive reading decisions—everything else is secondary.

But creating desire and seducing readers isn’t easy. Often, it requires you to step out of your comfort zone and write in a way that sees the story from their perspective. Once you get into your audience’s shoes, though, you can start to work your magic. Here’s how:

 

Express Strong Emotions In Action

One of the problems with J.R.R. Tolkien’s writings is that he rarely took the chance to express his character’s emotions in action. It was always the job of the reader to infer why they had done what they had done (which is why the films were such masterpieces). But today’s top fiction authors recognise that merely providing a catalogue of events isn’t enough to draw in readers. There needs to be strong emotional content.

Image: Flickr and credit: thedailyenglishshow.com

 

But what does that look like? It’s not about long monologues or in-depth descriptions of emotional experience. Readers don’t usually like this. It’s more about the nuance in the way characters talk to each other, and, importantly, what they do. This is actually a much more difficult thing to do than merely to report a character’s emotional experience. It takes time to think carefully about the way characters interact in their world in a way that is convincing and authentic.

Remember, although you may be writing a work of fiction, the emotions shouldn’t appear fanciful or unrealistic. Readers want to be able to connect to the people they read about, whether they are made up or not, and so they need to be believable.

The other thing to remember is that emotions in your story should follow a narrative trajectory. Feelings should build as your novel develops and, hopefully, reach a climax as the story resolves itself. Drip feeding readers emotional content helps to keep them invested in your work, safe in the knowledge that they’re going to be rewarded at some point.

Find Out What Scares Your Audience

Fear and desire are two fundamental driving forces in all human interactions, and they form the basis of many of the great works of fiction. These two emotions are so central to the human psyche that they can’t help but have universal appeal, as they have done throughout the centuries.

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The characters in your story face these emotions all the time. Fear comes in the form of death, rejection and failure, while desire is related to love, peace and safety. It can sometimes be a little uncomfortable to explore these issues in your characters, but they’re things that everybody has to face and will strike a chord with your readership. Some writers can be downright afraid to put their creations in danger or reveal aspects of their personalities that they’d rather keep secret. But it’s these traits which can help transform a book from ho-hum into something gripping.

Think about the times when you’ve been most interested in a character. Almost always it will be times when they have been in danger or had to make a decision tempered by desire. Because your audience knows these feelings so well, they will empathize with your characters and wonder what they might do next. Characters help introduce readers to emotional danger, which can be very intoxicating.

 

Avoid Cliches

Virtual Writing Tutor says that one of the biggest problems in people’s writing is the use of cliches. Although they may be a part of the vernacular, cliches almost always reduce immersion and make your writing less seductive.

The trick to engaging writing is to come up with your own way of saying things. Not only is it more interesting for the reader, but often it’s also more appropriate for the context. Cliches, unless used ironically, should be avoided.

 

Keep Your Readers Asking Questions

 

The screenplay for the TV series Lost was, in many ways, genius. The writers knew that to get people coming back season after season, they had to introduce random, unexplained elements which would be resolved later on. Many people watched the show just to find out how the writers were going to explain all the mysteries of the show. Their strategy worked, and Lost ran for a lot longer than initially intended.

Writers need to use this tactic too. They need to present something controversial, exciting or unexplained that requires an answer, such as a weird turn of phrase by a particular character, a strange event, or an inexplicable emotional reaction. Getting your reader to ask questions automatically generates interest in your book, forcing them to think about it differently than, say, if you gave them all the answers up front.

 

Get Right Into The Action

 

While setting the scene has its place, readers aren’t usually that interested in all the minutiae of your fictitious world; they want action. Smart writers create the scene as the action unfolds, rather than describing it separately, giving readers both something rich and compelling. Launching right into the action helps set the pace and provides interest immediately, making it easier to captivate than long, meandering descriptions.

 

Think Off-page: Unique Gifts for Bibliophiles

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We all love books.

It’s not just their ability to transport us to new worlds, or how they can stir a range of emotions and the technical prowess of their verse.

It’s the heft, the smell, the tactile pleasure of turning the pages, seeing them arranged proudly on our shelves—a “this is me!” to visiting friends and relatives.

When we meet and fall in love with someone who shares our passion for the bibliographic, it’s a very specific pleasure sharing your love of books. But as time goes by, it can be tricky thinking of new and exciting gifts for book lovers other than… More books.

So, if you’re looking for something different for your loved one, why not check out some of these?

 

Get Personal

 

Personalized gifts are all the rage and for those who love the printed word. There are some incredible options out there, from personalized stationery cards to bespoke bookmarks.

Those with a real appreciation of the interplay of paper and ink will be hugely appreciative of some of the options for personalized stationery, which can include:

  • crisp embossing

  • rich raised ink

  • unique letterings

  • artful monograms

  • colorful borders

  • oversized dimensions

You could emblazon their stationery with a stylized monogram of their name or initial, or even a passage from their favorite book.

 

Book of Life

 

Why not present your loved one with a unique book made just for them that’s all about… them?

Love Book Online provides a fun and unique service that allows you to quickly and easily construct a unique and fully customizable book of their life and/or your relationship.

You have total control over the content, and the site provides a variety of cover and binding options. If you’re looking for something to document their lives or your love, this is an artful and unique solution.

 

Book Ends

Book lovers don’t just love to read books; we love to display them almost as much. Many bibliophiles will agonize over the presentation of their beloved books, and a messy display is anathema to a book lover. So, why not present them with some truly special book ends?

Many of us think of bookends as something dull and utilitarian, but there are a great many cool and unusual bookends out there. Not on the Highstreet has a great selection that should match any tastes, though if your loved one has a taste for the superheroic, then these Batman / Superman bookends will look great keeping their graphic novel collection together.

 

Literary Apparel

Bibliophiles love to wear their love of books on their sleeves and The Literary Gift Company has some great examples of literary apparel (almost none of which actually has sleeves, but you get the idea). You can find everything from t-shirts with accurate renderings of their favorite book covers to clever slogans: “Careful, or you’ll end up in my next novel.”

There are plenty of affordable and adorable book-related t-shirts, scarves, socks, ties and even onesies for babies! If they like to sip a hot drink while they read, you’ll find a cute selection of themed mugs, too!

It’s a Fugly Life by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff Review

Hello, dear readers!

Just finished reading a fun book called “It’s a Fugly Life.” You can check out my review below, along with all the relevant information about the book, should you decided to give it a read. Enjoyed this book a lot, so I suggest you check it out! 🙂

It's a Fugly Life (Fugly, #2)It’s a Fugly Life by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

3.5 stars

This was a fun and quick read by an author I really like. Though it wasn’t as captivating for me as her other books, I did enjoy the fun and romance.

This book is a continuation of Fugly and concludes the story of Lily Snow and her (ex) man Maxwell Cole. Lily has screwed up her relationship with Max and is trying to move on with hot Italian actor Patricio. But something seems off and she’s reluctant to accept his proposal…then enters Max, coming as a strong force back into her life and begging for her forgiveness.

So the question is: who will she choose? Max or Patricio?

Add in quirky supporting characters and Lily’s internal dialogue of acceptance versus the old ugly voices, and you’ve got yourself a fun and touching afternoon read. 🙂

View all my reviews

 

fug2-release-blitz-01It’s a Fugly Life,

Fugly, book #2

by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

Released October 11, 2016

From New York Times Bestseller Mimi Jean Pamfiloff, comes a new standalone Contemporary Romance.

HE’S PERFECT FOR HER IN EVERY WAY, EXCEPT FOR ONE SMALL ISSUE. HE’S TOO LATE.

My name is Lily Snow. And I was once the kind of ugly that turned heads and made people stare. The worst part was how I let it ruin my life and destroy my relationship with the love of my life: Maxwell Cole, one of the sexiest, wealthiest, enigmatic men on the planet. All because I felt ugly and certainly not good enough for a man’s love.
But not anymore.

One car wreck, three reconstructive surgeries, and some unexpected money have changed my life.

I’ve started my own company, I’ve finally learned to like myself—not love, but like (hey, it’s a journey)—and I’ve met a wonderful new man who’s helped me put Max in the past where he belongs.

There’s only one problem: after six long months, Maxwell Cole is back, asking for the one thing I can’t give him. And he’s not taking no for an answer.

NOTE: This is a continuation of the story FUGLY, but is a standalone.

BUY NOW

 

Excerpt

No, no, no. What did he just f***ing say? I stared at the ass-faced reporter blocking my way to the church. A sadistic smirk stretched across his lips while his crew filmed my reaction. They hoped I’d cry for the entire world on my wedding day, didn’t they?

Maybe I would.

“Tell us, Miss Snow, how does it feel?” He urged the cameraman closer and shoved the microphone an inch from my face. “How does it feel knowing your fiancé cheated on you last night?”

The bastard cheated on me? The night before our wedding? I tried to blink away my tears, but his words felt like a red-hot poker through my collapsing heart. After everything that had happened, every tear shed, every moment of struggle, and the promises made, I couldn’t believe it had all led to this: emotional annihilation.

What did you expect, Lily? Princes don’t fall for frogs. Not in real life. He wanted a beautiful life, a perfect life. He wanted a beautiful wife and beautiful babies. I couldn’t give him those things.

I dropped my bouquet, smoothed down the front of my white dress, and lifted my chin. “It feels like shit.” I turned away from the church, ignoring the roar of the press and the clicking of cameras, leaving behind my last shred of belief in happy-ever-afters.

Those don’t exist. They never did.

 

Giveaway

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About the Author

 

MIMI JEAN PAMFILOFF is a USA Today and New York Times bestselling romance author. Although she obtained her MBA and worked for more than fifteen years in the corporate world, she believes that it’s never too late to come out of the romance closet and follow your dream. Mimi lives with her Latin Lover hubby, two pirates-in-training (their boys), and the rat terrier duo, Snowflake and Mini Me, in Arizona. She hopes to make you laugh when you need it most and continues to pray daily that leather pants will make a big comeback for men.

Sign up for Mimi’s mailing list for giveaways and new release news!

FUGLY, Book #1

A USA Today Bestselling Contemporary Romance from Author Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

UGLY IS IN THE EYE OF THE BEHOLDER…

My name is Lily Snow. I am twenty-five years old, and despite being born with an unattractive face, I have never doubted who I am: smart, driven, and beautiful on the inside.
Until I met Maxwell Cole.
He’s handsome, excessively wealthy, and the owner of Cole Cosmetics. It’s been my dream to work for this man for as long as I can remember. The good news is he wants to hire me. The bad news is he wants me for all the wrong reasons. Ugly reasons.
In exchange, he’s offered me my dreams on a silver platter. The job. The title. A beautiful future. But this man is as messed up and ugly as they come on the inside. I’m not sure anyone can help him, and he just might take my heart down with him.
(STAND ALONE NOVEL)

ON SALE NOW FOR ONLY 99 CENTS

iBooks | KOBO | NOOK | AMAZON | PAPERBACK

Book Review: Tailored for Trouble by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

Tailored for Trouble (Happy Pants, #1)Tailored for Trouble by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

***ARC kindly provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.***

I REALLY, really enjoyed this book. There was a lot going on, but it all worked so well. The pacing was excellent and the characters drew me in from page one. They were well-developed and had strong voices.

Taylor Reed, our female MC, has a witty and funny voice, which often made me laugh out loud and empathize with her. She has strong opinions but is understanding and really wants to change the business world for the better.

Bennet Wade, our male MC, is very intriguing and complex, and it’s interesting to keep finding out why he is the way he is as the story unravels. Everything he does has a good reason behind it, even if Taylor doesn’t think so. I thought he was delicious as a book boyfriend and thoroughly enjoyed him.

These two had me rooting so hard for them, and I think the ending tension worked really well. Also, I want to eat those delicious love cookies from the story! 😉

It takes a lot of effort to get 5 stars from me, so I can confidently say that I was impressed with this book. I would definitely read more by this author and look forward to her other stories.

View all my reviews

Author Spotlight: C. F. Waller

In honor of YA week, author C. F. Waller has his books on special. Though his books are for an older crowd, I think that some older teens would definitely enjoy them. 

If you’re into thrillers, sci-fi, adventure, and paranormal, then Waller has something for you!

Check out the books at their links below. Note: all books are priced at $0.99 through today.  

Palindrome 656: Click HERE

Free Dive: Click HERE

South Face: Click HERE

The Calling Tree (NEW cover!): Click HERE

NEW RELEASE: Tourists of the Apocalypse: Click HERE

About C. F. Waller

913913_516700111723967_1091736967_oWaller published his first science fiction novel at age forty-seven, after a flight on an ill-fated commercial airliner over the Atlantic Ocean, that nearly became an episode of Why Planes Crash. This experience illustrated for him firsthand that writing about exotic or dangerous locales was safer than traveling to them. Since then, he likes to think his meticulous research and storytelling gives readers a clear sense of their grandeur, without the inherent risk of flying.

After narrowly escaping the academic death-grip of several universities, Charles worked in nightclubs, took a turn as a new car salesman, and also as a hurricane shutter engineer. His favorite authors include Oscar Wilde, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., and Michael Crichton. The latter being especially close to his heart, as Crichton epitomizes the techno-thriller genre and and the failure of humans to interact with technology.

Though he will forever be a Midwestern boy at heart, he now lives on the gulf coast of Florida with his wife, Tina, and one fuzzy feline companion. If he’s not working on a new novel, you can find him volunteering at church, playing overly competitive Yahtzee with his spouse, or indulging in an unhealthy addiction to competitive cooking shows on television. Find him at: www.cfwaller.com.