Have you ever read a book with the intention of putting it down at the end of the chapter, only to realize you’re 5 chapters in? The chapter ending hook is where you end your scene and entice readers to turn the page as defined in Rory’s blog post here https://wordsmithsix.com/2020/02/05/narrative-fishing/
Here are a few chapter ending hook examples from the book I’m reading now, THE SEARCH by Nora Roberts. Genre: romance.
- She pushed herself up, shut down the laptop.
“I’m going to take that long bath, drink that stupid tea. And you know what? We’re going to book that damn villa. Life’s too damn short.”
- “I’m a fan of cold pizza.”
“I’ve never understood people who aren’t.” She rose, held out a hand for his.
- She walked out with them, stood with her arms folded over her chest against her thudding heart and the dogs sitting at her feet as they drove away. “Good luck,” she murmured.
Then she went inside to get her gun.
- Mai glanced at the doorway, lowered her voice. “I told the concierge not to leave a paper at our door in the morning. Just in case.”
They heard the pop of a cork and Fiona’s shouted, “Woo-hoo.”
“Put it out of your mind,” Sylvia murmured. “So we can keep it out of hers.”
- And when he fell, he fell into her eyes.
Your homework is to choose several books by your favorite authors, preferably in the same genre of your WIP, and with pen and paper, write every last sentence or two of every chapter ending. No typing or reading, only handwriting.
You will be amazed at how your brain will click on where to end chapters and how to leave an enticing hook for your readers.
Natalie Bright is the author of the upcoming KEEP ‘EM FULL AND KEEP ‘EM ROLLIN’: The All-American Chuck Wagon Cookbook, soon to be released September 1, 2020. She is also the author of the Trouble in Texas Series, adventure stories for middle grade.