For a new dance, the deviser must choose an original sequence of Figures which suit the Type of set and which produce the correct Progression by the end of each Repeat. However, to paraphrase the late Don Popplewell, for many years a stalwart of the Newbury and District Caledonian Society, "Too many dances appear to have been devised by randomly selecting Figures whose Time allocations aggregate to the number of bars in the Repeat". To avoid this trap, the deviser may aim for something innovative by way of a new Complex Figure though successful ones, such as Schiehallion reels, Pass and turn, Set and link and so on turn up very infrequently. More practically, s/he should make the succession of Figures blend, one into the next, to make a seamless whole so far as is possible; the experienced Dancer gains most satisfaction from finding him/herself naturally in the correct Position and Facing in the correct Direction at the Finish of one Figure, ready for the next.
Flow of the dance is a convenient term to describe this seamlessness. It is covered in three respects: Flow between figures, Flow between repeats and the all-important Finishing which enables the seamlessness. Although Flow between repeats is really only a special case of Flow between figures, it deserves separate treatment because, like Drop, it is neglected as though, by being ignored, any associated problem will go away.