on Fiction University:
The flow of a novel is an important and often overlooked aspect of keeping readers immersed in the story.
When I’m reading, I’m much more engrossed in prose that goes smoothly from one thought to the next and one scene to another. If the text is too choppy, it jars me right out of the story and I have difficulty getting back into it. It’s like getting interrupted every few minutes when you’re trying to focus–before long, you just give up.
A strong story usually has a strong sense of story flow. The author smoothly takes the reader from idea to idea, scene to scene, and chapter to chapter. The information shared is handled with care and readers aren’t given too much or too little. Everything flows so effortlessly readers forget they’re reading.
Weaker prose doesn’t flow so well. Chapters end in odd places, scenes just stop, and paragraphs contain awkward phrases that jars readers right out of the story. Readers are reminded over and over that they’re reading, and they notice the flaws more than the story.