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Creating scenes in your story- Grabbing readers’ attention

Updated on May 24, 2016

That fateful night!

A feeling rose inside me all of a sudden. I was driving to a friend's house then. But suddenly the intense urge to meet her compelled me to take the right turn. I sort of automatically turned towards Pario mansion where she lived.

The doors of the big hall downstairs were open but nobody was there in it. I went upstairs shouting "Swati, Swati,....". But my own voice returned reflected by walls. Nowhere in the building was there any trace of her. The fact that intrigued me was that all the doors were open and fans moving. Curtains hung flying to and fro. A cold wave ran through my spine when I noticed a trail of blood drops leading towards the corridor. It was certain that something had been happening there.

Slowly and silently I moved down the long corridor towards the front balcony. As I switched on the corridor light I was surprised to see her standing aloof at the remotest end of the balcony. Her face was turned away from me and even though I was far off from her I could see blood stains on the back of the grey jacket she wore.She stood still looking far into the dark clouds which overcast the sky.

I moved down the corridor way and called her in a low voice.

Her face started turning towards me, slowly, in fact very slowly. I had goosebumps when I had a full view of her countenance. Her face was black and eyes blood shot and puffy. There were little spine like projections on her cheeks. But the most weird thing was the expression that she wore, With a fearful chuckle, slowly moving towards me, she called, " Peter..".

My Gosh! the voice was not hers, absolutely not hers. But I knew the voice, I had heard it somewhere, long back. Years back.

I started running back through the corridor by the railing. She followed me, I could hear her foot steps inching closer to me. I ran very fast, down the stairs towards the main gate. To my fright the front gate was slowly turning to close. Was I getting trapped? I looked back and found her nearing me very fast. By now I was able to recollect. It was Ratna's voice, my ex-girl friend. She had died in the pario mansion under mysterious circumstances.

I ran for life and applied all my strength to slip out before the gate closed.....


You want to know what happened after that?

If you want to know what happened after that, you must read the next page.

And there lies the success of a writer. A writer is successful only if she/he has the ability to compel you to read the next page and the next page and page after page.

Simply said, you have to make your story/ writing an interesting one. And exactly there, lies the significance of the scenes in your fiction. You have to create scenes to narrate the tale you are going to tell.

Think why?

Sometimes you watch a movie twice or thrice or even more number of times. Why?

Because some scenes of the movie keep on knocking at your memory's door. Even though you know the story and the climax, you watch again and again. Great directors as well as great writers are adept at this. They can create magic with their scenes. Their scenes touch you, make you cry, make you burst out laughing and above all connect with you. They seem to be part of life.

A writer must develop the skill of creating scenes in order to be followed by an audience. Scenes of humour, emotion, horror, patriotism and many other niches may be created by observations and experiences of life and imagination of newer things and events.

Why do you need scenes in your story

Your story may be a repulsive one, a reader may get bored after reading a few lines and may not continue. The reader must be kept on tenterhooks. She/ He must be mesmerized, intrigued and excited to read and finish the story in one go. Scenes make it possible for you to grab readers’ attention. Creating such scenes in the story as would stun and jolt your reader’s psyche is an art. You learn this art slowly after going through immense practice.From your readers' reactions and feedback you can analyze what kind of scenes go well with the masses.

How to write a scene

  • You may write a scene which is directly related to the tale or may write one that adds to the mood of the story.
  • First of all get your self fully submerged into the story. Find out whether your scene will be a passionate one or a frightening one or whatever else. Always keep in mind the genre of your story and try to write a scene which constantly maintains the flow.
  • Think about the right place where the event might take place, how to make it happen so that it surprises and puzzles the reader and lastly how to put it into perfect words.
  • While writing the scene you must take note of the fact that the scene should not look out of place and should be assimilated well by the story. For this, you must pre-decide what will happen before and after the scene.

When and where should the scenes be placed?

  • A breath taking scene in the story must be perfectly timed. At times you may start a story with an intriguing scene so as to drive your audience to the niche you want.
  • Sometimes a scene may be created to provide impetus to a crucial turn in the story.
  • Scenes have the power to elaborate the story or implicate far lying latent but contextual aspects. A scene may not be entirely related to the subject matter of the story but it may be written to urge a character of the story to act in justification of the theme of the story.
  • The story may tend to ebb slightly at a certain point. A scene may also be placed at such a point to surprise and shock the audience so as to bring their attention back.

Another example

A hail of bullets sped and got buried in the soldier's chest. And the valiant soldier fell. He rose again and stooped forward. Blood gushed out of his chest in jets. Holding the machine-gun with both his hands he moved ahead. The blood stained bodies of his mates lay all around him in the battlefield. But he would not let the enemy capture his motherland. He did not remember any oath of the Army at that moment, any precautionary measures taught in the army or anything whatsoever. The only thing that he remembered was no particle that belonged to his motherland, not a leaf nor a penny of his country should go to the enemy. With heavy ammunition loaded on his back and machine gun held on to his bullet-ridden chest , charging into the vortex of the enemy bullets, Stuart kept on firing until all the enemy soldiers in the front line fell and his support arrived from behind. Stuart then fell unconscious but before closing his eyes forever he slightly moved his head and turned on his back to see his country's flag flying high on the top of the hill.

In a nutshell:

  • Scenes make the reader feel the story. If the tale is stated plainly it loses its charm and starts burdening the listener.
  • Scenes help carrying the mood of the story throughout.
  • Scenes create a semi-visual image in the mind of the reader, thus building up the interest of the reader step by step as the story progresses.
  • They shock the reader and urge her/him to think more about what is coming.
  • They provide hidden implications in a symbolic manner thus keeping the audience guessing.


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    • rajeshcpandey profile image

      RAJESH CHANDRA PANDEY 5 years ago from India


      Rightly said that scenes create the story.

      Well, I think description may vary from story to story. For instance a novelist definitely tries to create the scene in minutest details whereas the same cannot be said of a short story writer.