I've had this on my mind for ages. Here are some possible clues. Pace? Someone mentioned *Tarzan of the Apes* over on r/books a little while ago, and it got me thinking about the pleasant experience I had reading that book. Despite it having what I feel is a very slow pace, Burroughs managed to draw me in and keep me reading. So fast pace may not be the key to keepin' 'em turning pages. Danger and Stakes? Stories that can somehow quickly get us to understand the stakes at hand may keep us reading. On the other hand, without character building, the stakes don't mean much; why does it matter if a character I don't care about yet is in danger? Reading Level? If a book is supposed to be, say, for Young Adults, and you load it up with college-level words, those may serve as "speed bumps" for your readers and lead them to put the book down. Building curiosity? Both with movies and books, there are storytellers who get a lot of flack for being hacks. But one thing they do well, which covers a multitude of their sins, is build curiosity. I'll briefly mention two: Dan Brown and J.J. Abrams. Dan Brown gets clowned by more "serious" writers for his prose, his reuse of themes, and, well, lots of stuff. But damned if he isn't good at building curiosity. In *The DaVinci Code,* when Robert Langdon's hotel room door gets knocked on late in evening, and he has his coat put on him and is whisked into the night, you're curious. When we're "shown" the polaroid of the old man, naked on the floor, we're hooked -- why is the man in the Vitruvian pose? We're turning pages. J.J. gets joked on for his "Mystery Box" comments. But, on paper at least, "mystery boxes" are a damned good idea: begin to open up something on the first few pages that the audience gets curious to peek into. So, in *The Force Awakens*, our first few shots of Rey are as a masked figure scavenging around a crashed Star Destoyer. Who is this man or woman? And why is there a crashed Star Destroyer? In *Cloverfield*, not a lot of time is wasted before, boom, the Statue of Liberty's head gets knocked off. What the hell is going on? Is this a natural disaster or a terrorist attack or what? Everybody out to the street. Now we're running. What are the cops shooting machine guns at? Curiosity galore. Of course, Abrams is also good at opening mystery boxes (Who are Rey's parents? Where'd Luke's lightsaber come from?) that he does a dogshit job of closing. All of which makes me suspect that you can be weak in quite a few areas of writing (plotting, dialogue) but if you can succeed at creating curiosity, you can succeed at writing. -- I'm eager to what other writers think about getting readers to turn pages. Even better if you can cite examples from stories we know.