Friday, May 6, 2011

I'll Have Mine with a Twist ...

Nope, not talking about cocktails, though twists there are nice as well. I'm talking about throwing readers for a loop and making something happen that wasn't expected. I love books and films with a twist, because quite honestly, everything is so predictable these days. I mean, we've seen and read so many stories ... been there, done that. It's too easy.

Probably why when a story does have a twist, we fall head over heels for it. Ex. Shutter Island, The Sixth Sense

I just worked a few twists into my latest story, and hoping they come off how I planned. I'll be counting on my trusty beta readers to keep me in check. But I stumbled across this article from Writer's Digest the other day and wow! It rocks. If you didn't get a chance to read it, I'm posting the link below because I think it's totally worth five minutes of your time to read if you're a fiction writer.

TWIST ENDING TIPS FROM HARLAN COBEN


So how's it going my bleeps? I've been out of the blogosphere for a few days for some much needed R & R. I'll be catching up with you through the weekend. For my fellow moms out there, wishing you a wonderful Mother's Day weekend. I'm hoping for some breakfast in bed and some personal time for my special day. We'll see if Hubby delivers. *wink wink*

I'm sure I missed lots of good stuff while I was offline, but on the flip side I just revised an older story from last year and tweaked it to the point I can finally say, "It is finished!" Amazing how much my writing has improved since last year.


How about you? If you're a writer, have you noticed significant improvements over time? How do you like your twists? Can you think of some books and/or films with super twist endings? Please share ...

If you're looking for SPRING CARNIVAL post click here. Still have til May 8 to sign up for the giveaway. :) Happy Friday!

27 comments:

Rogue Mutt said...

What a twist! As long as the twist makes logical sense. I wrote a blog entry about that a couple months ago.

Summer Frey said...

I always go blank when asked about specific movies/books, but I know I've seen something recently. I do remember not being surprised by Shutter Island, though--I liked it, but felt like it was way, way too long.

Happy Mother's Day!

Karen Walker said...

Happy Mother's Day.Hope you get your wishes. The twist at the end of Sixth Sense was completely unexpected. I love that. I can't think of any others at the moment, however. Good post, Pk
Karen

D. U. Okonkwo said...

I love novels with twists, or with endings that you didn't see coming. And yep, I definitely find that my writing improves over time. I tend not to make the same mistakes that I did when writing my first novel.

Laurel Garver said...

Looking forward to following your link. I like my twists very subtly foreshadowed, with a little narrative misdirection to throw you off the path. I think JK Rowling manages these kinds of twists all the time--you buy into Harry's beliefs of who the bad guy is, and he's wrong every time!

The kind of twists I'm not so sure about are the ones that seems to conveniently fix a moral or ethical quandary the writer has gotten stuck in. I felt pretty mad about the twist in Jodi Picoult's My Sister's Keeper, though I'd still recommend the book. I loved the story so much and then BAM, a twist that supposedly heals and fixes everything.

Oddyoddyo13 said...

Harlan Coben definitely knows how to pull a good twist!

Old Kitty said...

Thanks for the link!

I don;t mind if I see a twist a mile away so long as the story is rivetting.

Happy mother's day!!!! Take care
x

mooderino said...

Hey Pk,
Thanks for that link to WD, very interesting article.
cheers,
mood

Kathryn said...

Happy Mother's Day! Enjoy your weekend! :) I like twists too; hopefully mine are surprises. I'll have to check out that article you linked. :)

Hart Johnson said...

I'm TOTALLY twisted... I suspect you know this... so I strongly prefer books and movies with twists... and I MOST strongly prefer it executed so that if I watch or read it a SECOND time, I spot all the clues (a well planned and executed twist)

I'll definitely give that article a read.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm not good with big twists - I go for the more subtle surprises.
And hope you get your breakfast in bed!

welcome to my world of poetry said...

I love books ending with a twist,
I enjoyed your post.

Enjoy your week-end.
Yvonne.

Barbara Kloss said...

Yay for R & R! I think we forget that too often...

I'm always encouraged when I go back to a ms after a couple of months and I see immediately what needs help. It shows me that I'm learning. I'm also encouraged when I'm happy with what I see. Takes awhile to get there. Nevertheless, we keep going!

Sixth Sense was a big twist for me, too. And you know, Mad eye Moody was another one for me, in Goblet of Fire. I didn't see that one coming. Rowling tends to do that to me. (Though I knew Snape was good!...at least, I wanted him to be good...)

Sophia Richardson said...

Rowling does twists well-- Prisoner of Azkaban was my favourite in the series for a long time because I loved the ending so much. The big reveal and Harry's happily ever after that gets snatched away when it's *so close* because of bad-timing and old feuds and misunderstandings. Man, that was some good writing.

Your two film examples are the ones that come to mind first but there's also Identity which has a big twist and then another twist right at the end. I had to look up the title, though so you may not have seen it.
- Sophia.

The Golden Eagle said...

The Kite Runner has one of the best (or at least the most stunning) twists that I've come across. The companion novel to it (A Thousand Splendid Suns) also had good twists to it. Also, Isaac Asimov does twists everywhere, which is part of the reason I love reading his novels.

My twists need major work. Hopefully, though, I'll get some good ones in there during rewrites.

Margo Benson said...

Many thanks for the link! I love twists and haven't, as yet, popped any biggies into my gentle romances. I'm working on it though ;-)

S said...

I saw that article earlier this week and saved it to go back and read over the weekend. It almost slipped my mind. Thanks for reminding me!

Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment too.

Catherine Denton said...

No, I'm not so great at twists so thanks for the link!

Also, thanks for your sweet thoughts on My Blog.

Michelle said...

Yes, it really is wonderful to read my early writing and see how far I've come... A twist I was trying to write 5 years ago just wasn't working - and now I can see why.
Happy Mothers Day(weekend)!

GigglesandGuns said...

Happy Mother's Day!

I love twists in a story and I'm so happy when I do one and my readers let me know it really worked.

Jennifer Jackson said...

If your twist doesn't make sense it will alienate the readers. When a twist works, it's delicious!

Congrats on getting revisions done.

Carrie said...

I love a good twist! Thanks for the link :)

Catherine Stine said...

I love story twists that I didn't see from a mile off--it's like riding a terrifying and exhilarating roller coaster.
Happy Moms' Day to all!

Dorothy Evans said...

I had to pop by again - your post inspired me more than I thought and I've credited you in my own post for providing the route for a long overdue kick up the backside. So thank you x

Girl Friday said...

I love twists, as long as they're not totally out of the blue. The Usual Suspects and Fight Club have two of my favourite twist endings.

Laura said...

great post and link- what a butt kicker!
Lx

magpiewrites said...

Thanks for the link, I will definitely check it out. I have lots of twists in my WIP and my crit group always fall for them, which surprises me (and makes me happy) I often feel, with laying down the foundation, setting it up, then springing the 'trap' that the reader will surely guess what's about to happen? So far, Uh Uh. Though I guess that's because when we're reading for pleasure, we're just along for the ride. That magical suspension of disbelief in action!