The Power of Three in Writing

ThreeThe power of three in writing a novel is the idea of using an object, symbol, or some reference three times. For example, in Norman in the Painting, Jill Steele worries about security. She has double locks on her doors, an alarm system, and an extensive collection of Foo dogs. In Feng Shui, Foo dogs are placed, one on each side of the front door, to protect the house and residents. Jill has a pair, not only at her front and back doors, but at each entry to every room inside the house. She overdoes it because of fear for her safety. In the first chapter, she buys a new pair when Norman appears. Several chapters later she wakes up from a dream where an army of Foo dogs talked to her but she didn’t understand their warning which foreshadowed a threat from the antagonist a few hours later. Now I plan to use the Foo dogs one more time in the novel to complete the power of three. The impact is stronger if the object is a symbol as in Jill’s case, the Foo dogs that represent her need for protection.

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