How do we use questions to tell better stories? Get through the next few paragraphs and I’ll tell you all about it.
J.J Abrams (the maker of Lost), who we will be looking at in a later segment talks about mystery boxes. The idea is that the most exciting stories leave you with boxes that you either can’t open (mysteries) or need to wait to open (cliffhangers). Questions are just the locks to those mystery boxes.
They are puzzles and they drive people to continue exploring your story to get solutions. Why is there a polar bear on the island in Lost? Who is Rosebud (while you’re at it, who actually wrote Citizen Kane)? How many licks does it take to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop?
Give people something to think about. Give them a reason to keep moving forward. Ask the right questions and be willing to dole out most of the answers, and you will create better stories.