I’ve talked a little about endings and beginnings, but what about what goes between? And I don’t mean the climaxes, although those are important too. But how does one write what is between even those? I’m talking about the transition scenes. Also called the boring parts. You don’t want your readers to skip over parts. That is liking jumping from mountain top to mountain top, missing the journey and adventure getting to those points. It becomes anticlimactic without an interesting journey. So don’t let your readers skip it either.
First things first. If your in-between scenes are boring to write, they are boring to read and you don’t need them. I’m not saying you don’t need transitions, and downtime for your characters, but there should still be something interesting happening. And interesting is subjective. There are a few different things to try if you are finding your middle bits boring.
Many writers like to use their transition scenes to explain some missing information poetically or not. Those poetic scenes that explain the intricacies of the environment or how the hero’s journey makes the hero really feel are insightful. But too much can easily become a bad thing. That’s when it gets boring.
Skip ahead into the climaxes and final fights and figure what has to happen for those scenes to still make sense. List the bare bones of your in-between scenes and only write in what is necessary for the story. Make them sweet and simple and your readers won’t mind the quick transition scenes. It is okay to cut scenes out you find are superfluous. And if they are necessary, change how you write them.
Changing Things Up
Changing things up can be interesting. It depends on your story, but if you need something more, change your setting. Put your characters in a new place that challenges them apart from the main plotline. Take just a moment to explain how refreshing or challenging the environment makes the journey. Who dwells here and what cultural differences are there?
Or you can change which character you are following and state things from their point of view. Let the reader get to know your other characters. They should all be interesting in some way. Even the side characters. The middle sections are the best times to get to know them.
Then add in some mundane drama. Put a wrinkle into the character’s path that was supposed to go smoothly. How do they resolve a horse throwing a shoe? What happens when they come across someone they could fall in love with but don’t have time for? Let your characters get lost and embarrassed. No one is perfect. Journeys don’t normally go smoothly either. It doesn’t have to be something grand, but adding in small complications are great fillers.
If you can make your quiet scenes as interesting as your dramatic conflicts you will be on your way to becoming a grand author. The middle bits are the biggest parts of your story and will greatly affect the quality of the writing. It is the difference between a good storyteller and a good writer.