Monday, May 28, 2012

Lessons Learned from the Movies Series: Part 4 by Fay Lamb

Hasn't it been helpful to read Fay Lamb's series this month? If you missed any of her articles, go the Search mechanism in the side bar and search by her name or by "movies." Enjoy her last installment!

Knock Your Reader Out; 
Don’t Let Him Pass Out
by Fay Lamb

Often a reader will grab a book to curl up with at bedtime. Reading relaxes them, tires them out and let’s them drift off to sleep.

People do the same with television.

But you don’t drive to the theater, pay hard-earned money, and sit in the seat to pass out. In the movie, The Rock, starting Nicolas Gage and Sean Connery, each new scene compounds troubles for Nicolas Gage. The girl he loves tells him she’s pregnant, he has to stop a terrorist from taking out the lives of millions of people in the San Francisco area, though he tells his girl to stay where she is safe, she follows him to San Francisco, Sean Connery escapes . . . the list goes on and on. The stakes are raised for the main character with each passing scene.

What authors want to do is give their readers a movie experience in their mind, one that doesn’t let their eyes fall shut before they turn the page. They want their reader’s eyes wide open, paged turned with anticipation of what is about to occur. They want to raise the stakes for their lead character.

Andrew, a master thief, has studied the layout for his latest heist. Yes, he’s a little rusty. He’s been out of the business for a few years. He can’t get caught. The woman he loves will die if he doesn’t get out with the loot. He’s factored in Detective Donovan, a royal pain in Andrew’s side since he was a street orphan trying to stay alive in the slums of New York. Andrew’s back for one last look at the layout, studying the case where the jewels are enclosed, making sure he looks like an everyday citizen enjoying the sights of the gallery where the diamonds are kept behind heavy glass and updated alarm systems. 

“I’d say these are worth more than you’ve ever stolen in your life, Drew. What do you say?”

Andrew can’t mistake the voice of his enemy. He turns and stares into the hardened gaze of Detective Donovan. “I didn’t know I had a record, Detective.” He looks back to the jewels, examining the press lever that will sound an alarm if he can get through the museum’s security system, past the lasers, and into the glass encasement.

“Maybe not, Drew, but if you’ll look to the doorway, you’ll see the one who will help me prove once and for all that you’re the master thief that’s stolen millions from the good people of New York.”

Andrew turns to look. He fights any show of acknowledgement, and turns back to the detective. “I don’t know anyone at the door, Detective.”

“She loves you, Drew. Loves you more than you deserve. Why don’t you just walk out of here, put your arm around the girl, and take her home. She needs you with her and not behind bars where I want to put you.”

Andrew shakes his head and walks off in the opposite direction. Hannah may want to think she’s saving him from an arrest, but life would be a prison without her in it, and he’s willing to take the risk.

Andrew’s not backing down. He’s up against seemingly impossible odds. His girlfriend is dying. He’s forced back into a life of crime to save her, but she doesn’t want him to take the risk. His old enemy is on the trail, and to save him, Hannah has enlisted his help. 

That’s called raising the stakes, and that will keep your readers awake.


Fay Lamb works as an acquisition/copyeditor for Pelican Book Group (White Rose Publishing and Harbourlight Books), offers her services as a freelance editor, and is an author of Christian romance and romantic suspense. Her emotionally charged stories remind the reader that God is always in the details. Because of Me, her debut romantic suspense novel is soon to be released by Treble Heart Books/Mountainview Publishing. Fay has a passion for working with and encouraging fellow writers. As a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), she co-moderates the large Scribes’ Critique Group and manages the smaller Scribes’ critique groups. For her efforts, she was the recipient of the ACFW Members Service Award in 2010. In 2012, Fay was also elected to serve as secretary on ACFW’s Operating Board. Fay and her husband, Marc, reside in Titusville, Florida, where multi-generations of their families have lived. The legacy continues with their two married sons and five grandchildren.


Not your typical Christian fiction.

Michael’s fiancĂ©e, Issie Putnam, was brutally attacked and Michael was imprisoned for a crime he didn’t commit. Now he’s home to set things right.

Two people stand in his way: Issie’s son, Cole, and a madman.

Can Michael learn to love the child Issie holds so close to her heart and protect him from the man who took everything from Michael so long ago?

Because of Me is available through all fine book retailers, Amazon, and Mountainview Publishing, a division of Treble Heart Books.

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