Questions I Ask Myself

I’ve been working through the beta reader feedback and the last of the critiques of the chapters from my critique group.

Now that the story is all out there on the pages, the characters are formed, the plot is set, and the message is embedded, I find myself pondering the greater questions. Here’s one that came to mind recently: Is this story compelling?

This topic was discussed in a writing article I read, and I don’t remember where or I would put a link here, but here’s the idea: A story needs to be compelling and needs to include a topic or related incidents that readers want to read about.

So I ask, is MY story compelling? Is the topic and/or related incidents something that MY readers will want to read about?

I know the answer will be different for everyone, but I hope that for the most part, people will find my story compelling. Here’s how I answered this question to myself:

What is compelling about my story? Sam searching for her father’s killer, but more than that, she is searching for a relationship with the father she never knew. Which also relates to her relationship with God as her Father. I want the readers to care about Gabriel so that they want/need Sam to find out what really happened to him.

Not everyone will relate to the fact that Sam is estranged from her father. I know that her relationship with Gabriel, or lack thereof, is the very opposite of my relationship with my own dad. We are very close, and I’ve always been a “Daddy’s girl.”

But, I think that’s part of what made me want to explore this story and how Sam was affected by growing up without her father. I can’t relate to that, so I wanted to discover Sam’s story and try to understand how that situation felt to her.

I think the idea of dads and daughters is a universal one, as is the way we relate to God as our Father. I’m hoping that the character of Sam and her journey is a compelling idea that will resonate with readers long after they turn the last page.

Tell me what makes a story compelling to you? What about a story do you relate to most? The characters? The setting? The plot? What do you look for in a great read? Leave a comment below and let me know.


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