Supercharging social media with storytelling techniques: #1 Conflict

Since time immemorial we have gathered by the camp fire to listen to tales of monsters, fair maidens and battles long ago. An interest in such stories seems hard-wired into our genes.

One clear opportunity for writers, who are familiar with story-telling techniques, is to use these techniques to increase the audience for any post about their book, in order to build its emotional resonance. I use post to describe anything from a short Tweet to a long blog post.

One of the first things to consider, when using story telling techniques in this way, is conflict.

Conflict doesn’t simply mean having a bad guy and a good guy, an antagonist and a protagonist, fighting it out, it’s also about taking on the “machine”.
Do your characters have any enemies, any systems they are against? What conflict occurs in your story? Is there any part of that, which you can use to build tension and conflict into your posts?

Writers have often used conflict, with religion, or government or with the arbiters of good taste to get noticed. Get some of that conflict into your posts and your Tweets and you can go a long way.

Frame your book as a struggle between good and evil. Whether that’s between the characters, or an internal struggle inside the heart of the main character, or a struggle against outside forces is your choice. If you do this effectively, which means keeping it short and powerful for me, you can build the emotional involvement that will inspire readers of the post to Retweet, mention or pass on your post in some other way.

And that’s what we want, for people to share our posts. If you get this right you will have framed your post using one of the oldest story-telling techniques.