High-concept storytelling in Gone 5: Revealing the big picture

Revealing the bigger picture, maybe

The edge of panic

As the Hero is our guide through the story, we follow their experiences and feelings. When Sam finally hits a crisis point, it’s the emotional high point of the chapter.

For the first time Sam felt the edge of panic, like a tingling at the base of his spine. His heart was thumping in his chest, laboring as if he’d been running.

Sam swallowed hard. He sucked at the air, unable to take more than shallow breaths. He looked at his friend’s face. He’d never seen Quinn so scared. Quinn’s eyes were behind shades, but his mouth quivered, and a pink stain was creeping up his neck. Astrid was still calm, though, frowning, concentrating, trying to make sense of it all.

GoneMichael GrantSource
Group dynamics

Can you find the same pattern in these examples?

But Noah could tell by how quickly he was breathing that he didn’t think it was stupid at all. A cold sweat covered his body and his legs felt like buckling under him.

Noah leaned weakly against a stand, suddenly acutely aware of the machinery sounds around them. If they’re working, he should see blinking lights, digital readouts, of course. Stupid!

He could still hear Eve muttering to herself between choked back sobs, as if she could talk herself out of the truth. Heidi just stayed quiet, except for a single, long, resigned sigh.

Trixie suddenly felt sick, like she’d been on a rollercoaster slowly climbing, and now she’d reached the top and could see just how far they were about to fall. It felt like her stomach wanted to jump out of her mouth.

She staggered back, then held on to Bron’s shoulder to steady herself. She could feel Bronwyn breathing quickly, on the edge of a panic attack. Bron shoved her hands into her hair like she was trying to hold her brain together, so Trixie patted her shoulder to let her know she was there. Meanwhile Hunter seemed unfazed. He checked his phone, looking for internet.

Your turn

Like what you see?

You’re not logged in!

If you want to save your writing, login and either assign this lesson to yourself or access it via your class.