Victoria Chatham suggested this topic: Prologue and Epilogue. Do they have a use? Should they be used? Can you have one without the other? This topic was suggested by one of our group, Victoria Chatham. Be sure to check out her blog.It’s an interesting topic. I’ve used both in drafts, and I’ve been called on it from a critique partner or editor. And I end up taking the prologue out and starting the story in a different place. They didn’t have a use in the stories when I really analyzed it. I think the first thing you need to decide is where should the story start. What’s the inciting moment? Does it change the direction of the story?
Now, does the reader need a prologue to give the background or can it be filtered into the story? I think if it’s a prologue it needs to be from a different time or setting. If it’s back story it should be added in small doses throughout the story.Epilogue can have a use, in my opinion. I have used them. You write the story and tie up all the loose ends. The goal has been met. The h/h have resolved their issues. The reader is satisfied. Right? Maybe, but sometimes you want to add a few little details that didn’t fit the quick paced ending.
For instance, it’s a series and after you wrote ‘The End’ and before the start of the next book, there was a marriage and maybe an adoption. It could be done in back story, but it’s more relative to the previous book. The reader may want to know what happened after ‘The End’.If you do write an Epilogue and I think can be used, it should be short and include only the items you think the reader might be interested in.
Can you use one without the other? Absolutely. But make sure it’s necessary and there’s no other way to include information the reader will want. And it should be info the readers want – not what the writer wants to share.I’m looking forward to hearing what other writers say, because this is a controversial topic. Check out theses authors.
Margaret Fieland http://margaretfieland.wordpress.com
Skye Taylor http://www.skye-writer.com/blogging_by_the_sea
Dr. Bob Rich http://wp.me/p3Xihq-QS
Marci Baun http://www.marcibaun.com/blog/
A.J. Maguire http://ajmaguire.wordpress.com/
Victoria Chatham http://victoriachatham.blogspot.ca
Anne Stenhouse http://annestenhousenovelist.wordpress.com/
Helena Fairfax http://www.helenafairfax.com
Connie Vines http://connievines.blogspot.com/
Rachael Kosinski http://rachaelkosinski.weebly.com/
Kay Sisk http://kaysisk.blogspot.com
Rhobin Courtright http://www.rhobinleecourtright.com
Happy Holidays everyone!