- Dramatic start (scene)
- Decisive sequel
- Surprising middle (scene)
- Satisfying end (scene)
Hmm - only 1 sequel in a short story? And does the opening need to be 'dramatic' - maybe it needs to be compelling (raises questions, intrigues you) without necessarily being jaw dropping dramatic.
Must check out some short fiction and see how many times I can tick the 4 boxes.
The house story -
For inspiration I'll construct the opening around the prologue from a military sci-fi novel. I see a powerful alien bad guy confronting a human engineer.
And I'll write out some cool moments based on the true story. Focus on conflict and writing dialogue to try and find the characters. Then shuffle stuff around to find connections - see which part of the story a scene or moment belongs to.
Sudden inspiration this morning about using the symbol of the tattoo. In the ending the engineer reveals his own tattoo - shows he's switched sides. And I can see how to raise the stakes - the defeat of the Bad Alien means the future will be different for other races : )