The Importance of an Engaging First Chapter
The first chapter is just as important as the first sentence and first paragraph since the first chapter is what will help a reader decide to keep reading or try something else. Within the first couple of chapters, you will introduce the reader to your main character, reveal the setting, set the time frame, and show the reader what every day life is like for the main character (all stuff I talked about in Day 9 when we mapped our chapter summary to a story arc).
The first chapter won't engulf all those elements, but it should have some features that engage the reader and keep them reading.
Today's exercise includes a checklist you can work from in order to confirm you have all (or at least most) of the elements that make up a good first chapter. If you're skeptical of the list, pull out your favorite novel and see how it's first chapter stacks up.
Exercise: First Chapter Checklist
First Chapter Checklist
DOWNLOAD: First Chapter Checklist
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Go to Day 23 - First Sentence, First Paragraph