The One Test Every Scene Must Pass!
Entire books have been written about what needs to go into a scene. There are dozens of rules. No doubt all this guidance is designed to help writers but it misses a key point. It’s not what goes into the scene that counts! It’s what comes out of the scene that spells success! And the most important thing to come out of any scene is this:
Have you rewarded the reader for reading this scene?
If the reader has not been rewarded, the scene fails no matter how many rules were obeyed. This is why some writers can keep breaking rules, year after year, while at the same time, producing best selling books.
Books sell well when readers are amply rewarded for reading them!
I know! I know! This can be infuriating to the quality writers who know what they are doing and who obey all the rules (and only break them when it makes sense to do so).
This situation reminds me of a music critic I saw on TV. This classically trained composer had this to say: “Yanni is no composer. He just writes music people like to listen to.” The thing is, the guy was being serious and I think we can all understand what he meant.