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FORESHADOWING: How to write a novel that readers can’t put down

Have you ever read a book that has you on the edge of your seat? Perhaps even chewing your nails? It seems like you cannot stop turning the pages to read more… 

Now imagine that was YOUR novel. What an ecstatic feeling, right?

Today we will be telling you about a way in which you can make your novel a book that nobody can seem to put down. Let’s introduce you to… FORESHADOWING.

What is foreshadowing?

This is a technique you can use to create hints of what is going to happen later in your novel.

How to use foreshadowing?

There are many ways to use this technique. You can follow some of the ways listed below to try your hand at it!

  • Through symbolism:

You can add symbols such as a crow for bad luck, or a dove to foreshadow peaceful resolution of a conflict. The trick is to ensure these symbols are fitting with your readers, they should know that this is a symbol for something. For example, if you are writing a thriller where the next scene is the climactic betrayal of your main character by their lover. Here, you could drop a hint to foreshadow this incoming scene by adding a snake to your scene or setting. This is a subtle hint, but would work to get your readers thinking! Read more about symbolism here: How to use symbolism to write a novel

  • Allegory:

An allegory is a story that represents something bigger. You could use mini-allegories to foreshadow big scenes. For example, if your character is in an abusive relationship and is about to be freed. Before the climatic freeing, you could describe a scene wherein a pigeon escapes from a cage – and focus on this in a bit more detail! If you spend time on this, it will catch the reader’s attention. Bonus: narrate this through your character’s viewpoint! This could add an extra dimension and foreshadow in a more tense way, since it will link the allegory to the coming events even more.

  • Flashbacks:

You can write a scene where your character is taken back to a time in their lives, that the reader does not know too much about. This scene should have hints or clues to what is coming in the next pages of your novel. Bonus: repeat this flashback throughout your novel, inching closer to the revelation each time, to build up even more tension!


So try foreshadowing in your writing, and tell us what you think!

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