Let’s chat about prologues. What do you think of them? Do they add to the story, or do they feel like just another chapter?
I’m seeing prologues being used to tell a little bit of the story from before the current timeline. I think that works well so that a chapter doesn’t feel out of place. But it has to be quite a bit before. But if a book already has flashbacks to reveal something you haven’t read about yet, then is a prologue really any different than another chapter? In that case, no, it isn’t and so why bother calling it a prologue and not just Chapter 1? I feel prologues and epilogues have similar issues.
I like prologues over a cold open. Sometimes, I feel like the story starts in the middle, and I’m forced to figure out how the heck we got here. And if I have to struggle to figure out what’s going on, I’m likely to stop reading. Prologues are good at giving us some background into the characters. I also like the way authors like Clive Cussler set up the story with a prologue. As these stories are usually to solve a mystery of a missing ship (or car, or train, etc), I like knowing what happened to that ship at it’s end. And then the buildup to solve the mystery in the rest of the story.
How about everyone else? Pro prologues? Or anti prologues?