I told y’all how great Buzzards is coming along, right? Yeah, so, I have a concern and I don’t know if it should be a concern. Or if it’s just my inner critic attempting to censor my muse. Or if it’s a concern best handled during revision. Here’s the situation:
For the past few months I didn’t know, not on a conscious level anyway, what the big twist would be in Buzzards. I had a couple of small ones worked out that I knew would relate to the big one but the details of the major twist eluded me until yesterday. Well it revealed itself, in a huge way, and while I love it, I’m worried it’s too much for most readers to stomach.
There are two concerns: First, I don’t want the twist to undo the bond between the reader and the female lead. Second, I don’t want the reader to be so turned off by the twist’s denotation, they put the book down and give up on the story.
I can’t really go into details or it’ll ruin the surprise; thus, I’m stumped how to go about getting feedback. I don’t belong to a local writing group and I don’t have an online crit partner. Holly touched on surprises and the Law of Unintended Consequences in Lesson 10 of Think Sideways, but I don’t remember reading anything about how to handle them.
Why, Muse? Why did you do this to me?
Here are my questions:
- Should I even care about this when I haven’t finished the novel?
- Once I finish the novel, should I worry about how the twist will affect some readers? It’s not shock for shock’s sake. It does add to the story–it’s an obstacle and additional tension; thus, more conflict. But it will hit a nerve.
- The twist will provoke a “What would I do in her position?” response from the reader. Is that more powerful than the shock of a taboo situation?
My gut tells me to ignore the voice in my head – damn inner critic – and continue down this path. I mean, if the twist caught me off guard, it’s bound to do the same thing to the reader, which is what I want. Honestly, this is part of what’s stopped my progress in the past. I’d hit some point in the story where I thought too many jaws would drop so I froze up and quit. I refuse to do that ever again but this is new and scary territory.
I guess the only option is keep writing and see what happens.
What do you think?