Can You Make My Scene-Breaks The Way I Want Them?

We can easily make your scene breaks easy for the reader to see. We use some white space above the first paragraph of the new scene. We usually put the first paragraph of the new scene flush-left against the left margin, so that it is obvious to the reader that something has changed, and that this is a new scene.

Sometimes a scene-break is simple; in modern contemporary literature, it's generally designated by a flush-left paragraph (instead of an indented paragraph), with some vertical spacing above it, as you can see here in Jackie Collins' "Chances:"


Jackie Collins' Chances, showing a scene-break indicated by a flush-left paragraph.
Jackie Collins' Chances, showing a scene-break indicated by a flush-left paragraph.

What If I Want To Jazz It Up?

But sometimes an author wants a little extra flourish. This can be obtained with the use of a "fleuron," a graphical device used to create visual impact, and to indicate scene-breaks.  You can see an example of the use of a fleuron in Sig Nilsson's "Howling of the Wind," below, shown on the Kindle Fire Previewer:

Howling of the Wind, demonstrating the use of fleurons for scene-breaks.
Howling of the Wind, demonstrating the use of fleurons for scene-breaks.


Scene-breaks can be whatever you choose--but whatever you choose, be consistent.  Many authors like hashmarks (###) or asterisks (***) in lieu of a graphical fleuron.  These are perfectly acceptable choices.  A reader can distinguish between a scene-break for a passage of time, versus a switch in POV (Point of View), as long as you are consistent with what you choose

T'was the Night Before Christmas... 

 (With apologies to Clement Clarke Moore, may he forgive my doggerel...)

...and all through the shop,
all we minions were working,
   until ready to drop.

The ebooks were flying,
the covers were spare,
The edits were crazy,
   with "one more thing I must share!"

We waited for Santa,
'Cuz we love old Saint Nick,
But Hitch made us work,
   Waving 'round an old stick!

So slave we all did,
And made all your books,
So that Hitch would say now,
   that we're off the hook.

Come today we're off,
to rest up our fingers,
Our hats we will doff,
   No books they do linger.

But we'll all be back,
Don't give it a thought,
for like all wage slaves,
   we're easily bought.

We'll be back on the fifth,
all eager and fresh,
All ready for you,
   after a well-deserved rest.

So Hitch wants to say,
very strongly and loud,
  you're the best type of crowd.

Indy and Len and Hitch and the gang,
will be back on the 5th,
to do books with a BANG!

In the meantime don't worry,
if you're in a hurry,
'cuz some poor guy got stuck
   sitting here like a duck.

Your emails we'll receive,
so no need to grieve.
We'll be a bit slow,
but we're raring to go.

Your books will be worked on,
your edits still made,
we're just resting a bit,
   before we all fade.

So please excuse the delays;
It won't be for days;
we'll jump on your queries,
   for your wondrous new series.

We waited for Santa,
'Cuz we love old St. Nick,
And sure 'nuff he came,
   It wasn't a trick.

And as he rode off,
into the night,
I could swear I heard Hitch yell,
   "That Edit's Not Right!"


We'll be back on the morning of January 5th; we'll be here parttime between now and then, thanks.