The Q Factor

James Scott Bell says: Utilize the Q Factor as a strategic weapon for motivation at just the right time.

I’ve never heard of the Q Factor before, so I thought I’d do a little research. Ack. I came up with physics and engineering lingo and got a brain cramp. No, its from James Bond. You see, there’s this dude called Q. He’s responsible for giving Mr. Bond his cool gadgets, which becomes very important later on in the movie.  It’s a lot like plant and payoff except way more specific.

No one likes to read a story where all of sudden something appears and resolves the story. That’s a payoff without a plant. Or we’re reading along, collecting all sorts of clues to try to figure out what’s going to happen, how they will resolve everything, except nothing ever comes out of it. That’s plant without a payoff. Frustrating and confusing.

The Q Factor is deeper, an emotional element, an icon of sort. It could be: an item, a mentor, moral sentiment, or even a negative character. But it has to be “planted” early in the story and alluded to in the middle of the story. Then right when our hero is at his lowest of lows, darkest of darks, the Q Factor shows up, and he finds the strength to keep on keeping on.

So what say you? Have you utilized the Q Factor? I think I need to go review my manuscript. 🙂


2 thoughts on “The Q Factor

  1. I love planting things early on in the novel for later reveal. The trick is planning (ie knowing you’ll be needing them later). I must admit my WIP is full of notes – “go back and drop in a mention about X”. Gotta love a first draft!

    • J. L. Mbewe says:

      Yes! I think that is why I want to write the third book in my trilogy so that I can know if I need to add or subtract anything in the first book. 🙂

      thanks for stopping by and sharing!

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