I’ve read quite a few books lately that have absolute doozies of cliff-hangers. They are the supersized, Big Mac version of cliff-hangers, da Ali G of cliff-hangers, Texas-sized cliff-hangers, the Bluefin Tuna of cliff-hangers…you get the idea. What I’m wondering about is why authors would knowingly put themselves and their readers through something so traumatic. Today’s Wondering Wall is:
1. Is it a matter of building hype? Do they or the publishers think that if they leave an audience hanging people will definitely buy the next book. Sure they might grumble
a bit a lot but it’ll pay off in the long run. Funnily enough, the longer the wait between books, the more I’m likely to give a series the flick.
2. Are the authors just evil? I can picture an author sitting at a typewriter (work with me here) twirling their moustache (some female authors have moustaches so I’m not being sexist) and wondering how to mess with their reader’s minds. Evil laugh and a fluffy or hairless cat are mandatory so is a cheesy accent. These three things are not negotiable but the secret lair is.
3. Do the authors genuinely not know what will happen next? I know there is a writing strategy which says to always stop in the middle of a sentence so that you are guaranteed to have something to write the next day. Maybe it’s the same with cliff-hangers.
What do you think? Are there any other reasons?