"Applying a short story arc to each scene in a novel will strengthen the plot and character motivation, and build tension to the climax of the book."
~ Suzanne Pitner
In her article, "Novel Writing Tips, Applying Short Story Arc to Scene Structure", Suzanne Pitner explains how we can apply the traditional short story arc to individual scenes of our MS in order to better build the story's tension.
"Thinking of scenes as mini stories, each with a beginning, middle, and end helps writers to define the characters, plot, and subplot in a novel. A short story focuses on one plot element, and a scene should do the same thing."
She suggests ending our scenes at the height of the conflict, and opening the next scene with how the conflict was handled. The final scenes of the story will provide the resolution.
Suzanne compares this strategy to waves building in intensity throughout the story.
"Each scene will build upon the one that came before, but each will still maintain that mini story arc. As this continues through the book, the tension will rise until the novel reaches its dark point. It will be like riding a crest of a wave that builds in power until it reaches the shore. At the dark point, the water recedes. To the unaware person, it might appear that things are going to be fine. Until you, the author, bring all the force of those waves back to shore in a tsunami, the climax of the story.The article is really quite interesting, as are ALL of Suzanne Pitner's writing articles. I suggest you follow the link below and read the full text.