The Middle-Muddle: Write a middle that has some punch! (Story Structure in Harry Potter, Pt III)

Write Like Rowling

Photo by Bells Design @ Gratisography / CC0 1.0

The middle of a novel comprises 50% of a book’s pages. It doesn’t have the fresh taste of a beginning and it doesn’t have the twists and turns of an ending. It’s just the middle.    Just    the    middle.    Sounds boring, doesn’t it? Writing the middle of a novel has sunk many an aspiring writer; so how exactly did Rowling do it?

Part II: The Response

Reading Story Engineering by Larry Brooks immensely helped my understanding of the mechanics behind “the dreaded middle.” In my previous post I discussed the first 25% of a novel, The Setup, which ends after the first plot point. This post will focus on the second part: The Response.

The Response spans another 25-30% of a novel and its purpose is to zero in on the protagonist’s reaction to his new situation after getting…

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A Great Man

This post isn’t about writing but I learned a cool story that I wanted to share.

On New Year’s Eve, my great grandpa passed away and his funeral was today. He was a veteran of WWII and was given military honors at his funeral which was really cool to see. We were told a story from when he was serving as a military policeman in Germany as part of Patton’s army after the war ended which I want to share.

One of my great grandpa’s duties was to go through the fox holes to take care of the dead in them. When he was going through, he found a young soldier [a member of the Nazi army] that had died as he’d been writing a letter. Grandpa noticed that the young soldier already had the envelope addressed to his parents. As Grandpa thought about it, he realized that this young man’s parents were out there not knowing what had happened to their son, so he took the letter and envelope with him back to camp. He wrote a quick paragraph on the page, letting the parents know that their son died serving his fellowmen and that they should be proud of his service. He then sent the letter off.

I hope I can be that kind of person.

Rest in peace, Grandpa!