Writing Books/advice


Hi Bobbie,
I'm asking you because a friend is named Bobbie and it's Christmas, lol I was looking for a Christmas song for her (I'll forward if I find one)
Anyways, I'm working on a novel, and it begins with five completely separate stories, one for each main character, then they all end up in the same place and gradually meet each other, and then it's pretty straight-forward, a narrator, the main character, is introduced after each character's back story, however,I'm worried it might confuse readers - I made sure each character story held on it's own and had a devil of a time making sure details in one story matched the other. Once they are all together, it is clear that that is why I told it like I did, but not sure if it is a good idea at the beginning of a book...
Much Thanks,

Of course I cannot answer with certainty whether your specific novel works; however, look into Thornton Wilder's book, The Bridge of San Luis Rey, which also tells of several characters who later share a tragic ending. Does the formula work? The novel won the Pulitzer Prize in 1928.

Writing Books

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Bobbie Christmas


Book Doctor Bobbie Christmas owns Zebra Communications, a book-editing firm in metro Atlanta. She not only edits books, she also helps writers power up their prose to increase their chances of success. She is the author of Write In Style (Union Square Publishing), a creative-writing guide that won three awards.


Bobbie has spent more than 40 years in the publishing and communications industry and has run Zebra Communications, a book-editing company, since 1992. The editor of many publications and periodicals, she has worked with book publishers and trade magazine publishers as well as working in marketing communications and corporate communications.

Past president, Georgia Writers Association; past vice president, South Carolina Writers Workshop; charter/lifelong member, Florida Writers Association; Southeastern Writers Association; Atlanta Writers Club; Society for the Preservation of English Language and Literature (SPELL); International Guild of Professional Consultants

Write in Style (Union Square Publishing), A Cup of Comfort (Adams Media Corporation), A Cup of Comfort for Friends (Adams Media), A Cup of Comfort for Mothers and Sons (Adams Media), Haunted Engounters (Atriad Press), Remembering Woolworth's (St. Martin's Press), First-Time Home Buyer magazine, HomeBusiness Journal, Apparel Industry Magazine, Edge Magazine, Atlanta Jewish Times, Time Travel Australia, American Writers Review, Points North, That's Entertainment, Atlanta Parent, Agnes Scott Alumnae Magazine, etc.

Journalism: University of South Carolina plus four decades of working in publishing, marketing, communications, advertising, newspaper and magazine production, book publishing, etc.

Awards and Honors
First Place, nonfiction, Georgia Writers Annual Contest, 2005; First Place, education, Royal Palm Literary Award, 2004; Best in Division, Georgia Author of the Year Awards, 2005; Finalist, Best Books 2005, USA BookNews Third Place, nonfiction, Georgia Writers, 1999; Nominated for Georgia Author of the Year, 1998; plus many other awards

Past/Present Clients
Capital Books, Sourcebooks, Olin Frederick, The Writer's Machine, Russell Dean & Company, Outskirts Press, and hundreds of writers.

©2017 About.com. All rights reserved.