“When writing a novel, do you add a hook near the beginning of the book after the manuscript is completed or when you start writing it?”

Tell the story the way it tells you…

Sometimes your hook may come right at the beginning, other times, it may come when you’re done with the manuscript… possibly even after you’ve submitted it.

I think when it comes to the technicalities of how to write a hook, different authors have different preferences.

A hook, for those unaware, is basically a sentence (or a group of sentences) that draws your readers in to reading your work.

Based on this, I personally prefer to begin with a captivating sentence and/or add my hook within the first two paragraphs.

This way, a promise is made right at the beginning and the anticipation of the promise fulfilled keeps the readers engaged.

Three ways you can do this:

a). Create curiosity.
Let your first sentence/ paragraph make readers curious. Intrigue them. Your first line should generate questions that lead them to read your book/story for the answers to.

b). Connect emotionally.

If your words can stir up feelings in your readers, more often than not, they will stay connected and stick with the story till the end.

c). Introduce a character.

I’m a sucker for this personally. I read a book beginning with a perculiar character and I can’t help but read on to discover more about them… two of my personal favourites are:

“There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.”

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, C. S. Lewis

And

“Kell wore a very peculiar coat.”

A Darker Shade of Magic, V.E. Schwab

There are in fact a number of other ways to write a great first sentence hook but I think it best for each author to practice and find what works best for them… I also think it’s important not to neglect the story and what it wants to do… let the story tell you.

So, to answer the question, sometimes my story is born from a sentence, such as:

“I died a thousand times that day.”
Jenée, Xyvah Okoye & Chiedozie Omeje

Other times, I’ve gone half way through my manuscript before returning to rewrite the first paragraph.

To be honest 🙈 there was a case where I finished the manuscript completely and ended up getting my hook in on my second edit of it.

🤷🏽‍♀️ it all depends on what works for you. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to do it right the first time. It will come when it’s ready… let the story tell you.

The Rose

Her tears lost themselves among the raindrops that now sank deep into the dirt ground, 6 feet too shallow for him to feel them. Maya smiled at the stone marker staring back at her. “You always loved the rain.”

She rolled the stem of the red rose between her fingers as the images of happier times flashed before her, ghosts of a life left behind. “I guess you loved it a little too much.” She looked up at the grey clouds, pregnant and bursting with a grief that could only be expressed through the tears they now shed with her… or for her? Maya couldn’t be sure anymore. 

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The strongest shoulders often carry the heaviest burdens.

A man turned to his friend for help with $100 top up so he could buy a car. Little did he know that the friend he had turned to was also looking to his cousin for $1000 to fix an ongoing issue with his own car engine. And that his cousin was also looking to his own godfather for $10,000 to fix an issue with the plumbing in his home. And his godfather was also looking to his bank for a $100,000 loan to fix up his own home.

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We are creators

ꪖᠻᠻⅈ𝕣ꪑꪖ𝕥ⅈꪮꪀ:

“𝕀 𝕒𝕞 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕒𝕣𝕔𝕙𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕔𝕥 𝕠𝕗 𝕞𝕪 𝕝𝕚𝕗𝕖; 𝕀 𝕓𝕦𝕚𝕝𝕕 𝕚𝕥𝕤 𝕗𝕠𝕦𝕟𝕕𝕒𝕥𝕚𝕠𝕟 𝕒𝕟𝕕 𝕔𝕙𝕠𝕠𝕤𝕖 𝕚𝕥𝕤 𝕔𝕠𝕟𝕥𝕖𝕟𝕥𝕤.”

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Welcome, September

2020 has been seriously bumpy for the most part, but as we step into a new month, let’s take stock of the things that have gone great.

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We are actual human beings…

Have you ever been shopping and seen something that looked sooo good on a mannequin, but when you wore it… Yeah, you realised you and the manikin aren’t the same 😩

I don’t know if guys do this but, speaking from a lady’s perspective, we could sometimes become so bugged down by ideals on how to look and what to wear. This leads us to erroneous diet plans and exercise routines we hate as we try to transform our bodies to look like the magazine and runway super models.

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The Tribe

No man is an island, we are all part of a tribe…

But what is that tribe? And what does it take to be a part of it?

We live in connection with others and our actions affect those around us. But when the good of the masses goes against the good of one, where do we draw the line on right and wrong.

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Cyclones and suicide notes

Life is a mismanaged cycle of highs and lows, a cyclone of emotions wasted on circumstances and people, both fickle and as uncertain as the winds.

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Caged birds

Why do we cage ourselves and play down our potential?

Why are we programmed from a young age to believe that self-limitation is synonymous with modesty and self-doubt, with humility?

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Remember to live


Life is short… I think anyone past 21 realises that. 

We spend a lot of time worrying about what people think, feel and would say, and in the process cage and restrict ourselves. 

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