Whenever people ask me what the most difficult part of writing a book is — the beginning, middle, or end — I usually say, “All of it.” Each section of a novel comes with its own set of challenges: Middles are hard to plot, ends need to be satisfying (and in my novels, they usually involve a twist), but then there is a novel’s beginning. Learning how to write a good hook, if I really had to choose, is truly the toughest thing.
In this age of instant gratification, short attention spans, and tons of other great fiction to compete with, a novel’s beginning needs to grab the reader. Otherwise they might deem the book a big DNF (did not finish) — or if they’re perusing the sample pages online or first pages in a bookstore, they might not make the purchase at all. So how can you start a story with a bang? Here are 12 tips for how to write a good hook!
1. Stating a Staggering Fact or Entertaining Statistics
Numbers are work good in any text as well as little-known facts do. Statistics also can make the essay more convincing especially when you reinforce them by mentioning the source. Here and later I will provide examples for better understanding. Let’s get back to the topic of my first essay – the environment. In this case, the beginning could be followed by such hooks:
“40% of all produced bottled water is actually bottled tap water according to the Ecology Global Network.”
“The factories that produce toilet paper cut down 27,000 trees each day”
3. Asking the Provocative Question
Questions are good because the people got used responding to them unconsciously and it involves them in reading. Before asking the question you should be sure if it is intriguing enough not only to your mind but to every potential reader. The series of queries also will be efficient especially if you want to promote your idea and make the person agree with you in the end. It is proved that after 3 “yes” the reader will say it the fourth time without any difficulties. Few examples:
“Isn’t it too late to save the Earth?”
“Have you ever imagined what could happen with your city if every citizen threw the trash into the bins?”
5. Challenging Yourself with an Improbable Statement
Start off with the misconception or with wrong opinion and the reader is already on your hook. People will have a stake in the continuation because they will simply wonder why you began the essay with a mistake.
Also, you can challenge yourself and provide them with the opposite point of view first. This kind of statement takes a place of your imaginary opponent with whom you are going to argue and prove the trueness of your opinion. It may seem that such a move would only weaken the essay: the reader will not believe the author and agree with someone else’s opinion. That’s why choose the opponent you could handle. Here the examples are:
“Some people admit that we shouldn’t think about the future of our planet. Who cares if we live here and now?”
“Genetically modified foods are awfully harmful to our bodies. But actually, this fact has long since been disproved by the scientists.”
Find more hooks on the following picture:
It is not necessary to use those hooks in the paper: you can discover the own way to draw the reader into your web. There are different types of essays to write so consider which one could be the most appropriate. Even if your hook is killing, don’t ruin the whole essay by giving poor arguments or providing the superficial analysis of the data. Write also an outline for the research paper and get prepared well for the tough but interesting job. Apply enough pressure and you will compose the decent essay of which you will be not ashamed even after a while.
Begin at a pivotal moment
When I was twelve my family moved from one-hour outside of New York City to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and one-hour away from a JC-Penny’s. We were raised Presbyterian, but because we had the distinct hallow-eye’d look of Ann Frank and everyone else in the White Pine, looked very Scandinavian, we became the town’s diversity—before diversity was a good thing.
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2. Explain Something
You may want to jump straight into an explanation instead of asking a question. Make sure you’re not stating the obvious or oversimplifying something, though.
The key to using an explanation as a hook is actually to put it in the title. Tell people you’re going to explain “how to” do something or “why” a certain object/idea is as it is. If you can, turn it into a listicle – like “7 Ways to Create Better Sleeping Habits” or “Here’s Why Everyone Is Traveling to Argentina Right Now.”
Such a catchy title makes the hook almost effortless. It’s like walking up to someone and saying “guess what.” No matter what follows this opening, they’re going to want to find out.
How to Write a Catchy Hook and Insightful Blog
It’s one thing to know how to write a catchy hook and another to maintain the reader’s interest all the way through a blog. You have to be careful to not repeat yourself in the body or be boring. You can’t overcomplicate your blog or make it too simple, either.
Don’t worry about such things too much, though. The best thing you can do to improve your writing is to keep writing. This will help you come up with innovative hooks, fun titles, and finish strong the whole way through.
For more blogging tips and tricks, click here.