Well, some interesting replies, especially the striking too soon conundrum. Much in our hooking and landing of fish has to do with timing, but there is something you can do to improve your odds. If you look at a regular Tiemco 100 dry fly hook in size 20 or 22, the hook gape (or gape to some) is very, very narrow and if you can imagine to yourself the very small amount of fish flesh that the hook actually grabs with such a small space - let alone the timing issues - you realize you are lucky to land the fish at all once hooked.
While I haven't solved the problem completely, I think I have dramatically upped my chances of hookups as well as being able to play a well-hooked fish by changing the hooks I use for smaller offerings such as tricos. My solution is to use the Dai Riki 125 emerger hooks for most of my dry flies. Although they appear to have a scud-type shape to them, they really do tie up some splendid dry flies, especially tricos since they have a pretty short body to start with.
The 125's have a much wider gap thus increasing the ability to get a more solid hookup with much smaller hooks and fly sizes, especially in 18, 20, and 22's.
Here are a couple of examples of two of my dry fly patterns tied on the 125. Although they are much larger than tricos (Flav and mahogany duns), the concept is the same for smaller flies also:
In addition, I use a 'twisted' mono leader that has a fair amount of stretch to it upon the hook set as well as while playing the fish which I believe prevents break-offs a bit better, especially with the stiffer and faster rods available. I use a St. Croix Imperial in a 5wt which is fairly fast, yet I fish 5X and 6X tippets often, preferring the 5X most of the time. Rarely am I losing fish by breaking them off.
Give it a try.