Most stories have a drama flare or an intensity that keeps building throughout the story. Your story needs to have that fight/pull feel to it to get to that climax and to keep your readers in suspense. However, you also need to have intervals that break up the intensity and help pace your story.
There are several ways to accomplish this:
- Create hobbies for the characters. See Adding Hobbies
- Create a character that is the comedy relief. The character doesn’t need to be funny 100% time through the story, but can be a someone who can be naturally funny or tries to relieve uncomfortable situations by telling jokes. Think of Chandler from the sitcom Friends.
- Have the main character do some quirky traits. See Character Personality Traits and Character Flaws – Note: they don’t have to be negative traits or flaws. Challenge yourself and create good ones or funny spins to them.
- Your story overall needs to have Character Growth. The intensity of the story can slow down in places to have the character growth focused on. It helps set the pace a bit more.
- Add in something unique to the character: an anniversary, a birthday, gaining their college or high school degree, drivers license, a speech to prepare for then give, etc.
- Adding in Road Blocks / Challenges to the story can really slow the pace of the story. Don’t have nothing but road blocks building up to the climax, but add them in as twists or ways to help with character growth. Note: Same as above – challenge yourself and create good road blocks in the story.
I’m sure there’s more, but just remember that not all experiences are bad. Even the bad ones, we learn and grow from it. Don’t limit your story and more importantly, don’t limit yourself.
L. R. Mauck