on Fiction University:
If you can’t get readers to emotionally connect with your novel, they won’t read your novel.
When you pick up a novel, what keeps you reading?
The desire to see what happens next? The fear that something horrible will happen to your favorite character? The need to see it all turn out for the best? The need to know what happens next or what it all means? Maybe all of these at different times in the book.
No matter what hooks a reader about a book, they’ve made an emotional connection with it. They care, and don’t want to see the characters get hurt. But the wonderful thing is, once you’ve made that emotional connection, “hurt” takes on a much broader definition.
The emotional peril a character faces is just as important as the physical peril.