You know what I’ve realized lately? Is that despite the fact that our fictional stories are well, fictional, they still need to make logical sense. Everything in the story needs a reason that makes sense. It may not make sense in our reality, and if it doesn’t it probably needs to be explained, but there has got to be a reason why you thought of it in the first place, right?
Essentially, this: why does X belong in your story? What’s X’s purpose? How does X come into play?
Any question that’s derived from your story in the reader’s mind is essentially a child of the reason for the subject’s being. Most times when I write I find that I have a really good idea, but only sometimes does the idea actually make sense with the story. It’s like trying to fit a bunch of puzzle pieces together and although one might fit, that doesn’t mean that it naturally belongs there–the size is the same, but the picture doesn’t match.
So why does every little detail, every word, in your story exist? Why is the puzzle piece a match?