5 Ways to Keep Readers Riveted With Conflict

Since I’m on the road at the moment, and since everyone enjoyed the last few sneeze pages (themed collections of previously published posts), I took the opportunity to put together another one, this time focusing on the all-important topic of conflict. As the old saying goes, “No conflict, no story.” Below you’ll find tips on ramping up conflict, using conflict to strengthen every element of your story, and just generally frustrating the tar out of your characters. Enjoy!

6 Ways to Create Riveting Conflict in Your Story

6 Things Your Characters Want–and 4 Ways to Keep Them Frustrated

A Quick Secret to Secondary Antagonists

One Way to Simultaneously Create Conflict and Suspense

External and Internal Conflict: The Killer Combination

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About K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland

K.M. Weiland is the award-winning and internationally-published author of the acclaimed writing guides Outlining Your Novel, Structuring Your Novel, and Creating Character Arcs. A native of western Nebraska, she writes historical and fantasy novels and mentors authors on her award-winning website Helping Writers Become Authors.


  1. Fantastic Sunday afternoon reading. Thanks!

  2. I just sat through all of your videos. Each was so helpful. Thank you

  3. Very good. I’ve forwarded this article to some writer/preacher friends. Thanks. wb

  4. Thank you for this collection!

  5. Such perfect timing. I was reamed at my writers conference for not enough thrill in my thriller. I believe that includes conflict. I read this with rapt attention.

  6. Anonymous says

    I just found your blog today and for the past hour I’ve been reading a lot of your posts! Of all the writing blogs I’ve read so far, yours is the most helpful. You are very good at this!

  7. LOVED this thank you, quick, visual and to the point!

  8. @Miss Cole: Glad you enjoyed it!

    @D.: You’re a patient person to watch all those videos in one sitting!

    @Warren: Thanks much. I appreciate your sharing the post with others!

    @Hannah: Thanks for reading!

    @Jacqui: Ouch. That kind of learning experience is always valuable – but usually less than comfortable too.

    @Anonymous: Thanks very much. Makes my day to hear that.

    @Deb: Life is busy for all of us, so I like to present lessons that be digested quickly while we’re on the go.

  9. That’s a good post. I like it. Though I don’t get what’s up with the cloak, and I don’t think the little kid should go with the girl in the painting. As for the dude that’s about to hit his head on the wall, he’s not gonna get what he wants OR needs, but a headache and a bump. I feel bad for the dude.

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