Medici castle was on a scale that was rarely built on these days. Three hours ride out of Argonia at a gallop, it sat atop a cliff set just in from the sea, proudly overlooking the de'Medici's traditional holdings to Argonia's west. The land had been in the family for generations, and their line could be traced back even further than that. They were a force in politics, a well-worn family name that would come to Argonia's aid when asked and their constant grip on land so close to the city proved that.
However, it hardly made the place more welcoming in the winter. While heavy tapestries were hung up over the windows and fires were stoked at all hours of the day, there was a distinct chill to the air that crept through the walls itself. Torches lined the corridors, their shadows spooking the servant's children as their shirked their duties. The entire affair, outside of the noble's wing, felt much like a
Basics : RP TypesDistinguishing RP typesBasics : RP Types5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Roleplayers make up a large part of the community here on deviantArt. It's an ever-growing community, and new members join it every day. Thirsty for adventure, these new members leap into the large world of roleplay, blissfully simplistic, filled with hopes and anticipations. They expect a rich roleplay experience full of excitement, and they want it to be delivered!
New members, however, also means less experience, and less experience means less knowledge. That knowledge which new roleplayers need to acquire may be earned in the long run, by partaking in several satisfying and unsatisfying roleplays and learning through trial and error what is right and what is wrong to include in one. I have taken that path, and I can say that it's a hard place. Some people, even after several years, haven't even made as much progress as would have been expected; they just can't get the hang of it. I have decided to let anyone who so desires take an alternate path, a sh
10 Easy Tips to Improve Your Writing.These are some very basic things for new writers. If you see somebody that could benefit from this, send them a link!10 Easy Tips to Improve Your Writing.2 years ago in Writing More Like This
1. Use correct punctuation, spelling, and grammar everywhere, not just in your writing.
I see a lot of writers that text-talk in conversations, leave out punctuation, don't capitalize words, etc. Even if you're just shooting a message to a friend on Facebook remember those rules! Not only does this create good habits, but I find that it leads to better and more intelligent conversations
2. Learn those tricky rules like "laid/lay" and "effect/affect".
A lot of people slack off on these. Personally, I have to look up things like this all the time because I just don't remember. They're annoying, but learning the differences can help you out in your writing and in real life. Also, the difference between "good" and "well" is a must-know! I hear this used incorrectly every single day.
3. Paragraphs and when to use them.
Obviously your wr
An Unkindness of COMMASAn Unkindness of COMMAS5 years ago in Writing More Like This
I SUCK at commas big-time. I tend to pull a "Mark Twain"; I sprinkle them in wherever to break up the monotony of the sentence. This article is my attempt to hammer the rules into my brain.
An Unkindness of COMMAS
What the heck are Commas for, anyway?
Besides abusing the sanity of the writer, the comma exists to help readers organize information in a sentence. It makes all the stuff the author is trying to say easier to swallow. Without them, sentence bits and pieces collide into one another causing confusion; rather like a train-wreck, though not nearly as exciting.
Just in case you'd like to know who made up all these comma rules, I got most of them from Strunk & White's "Elements of Style" the grammar handbook used by every publishing house in America, and a few overseas. The rest came from my editors.
To get a good idea of how commas work, let's take a look at what they are supposed to do -- and some major
Writing Lesson: Character TraitsIt's come to my attention as of late that there are a few traits that people give their characters for no other reason than making their character unique. I thought I would just ignore it, but then they started popping up everywhere. I mean everywhere. I looked through the deviations in a group yesterday and saw reoccurring "traits" that make me want to tear my hair out. So this handy guide is here to tell you what's been done to death and when (if ever) it's still okay to use it. I am by no means a professional, but I certainly hope you'll take some of this to heart.Writing Lesson: Character Traits2 years ago in Writing More Like This
Please keep in mind that these are all just opinions, really. I am not telling you that you can't do these things! (Not that I have the authority to do that anyway). More than anything, these are just things to take into consideration when creating a character for a novel.
Heterochromia. This is the condition where one's eyes are two different colors.
The Secret to Proper ParagraphingThe Secret to Proper Paragraphing5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Once you know what your characters and doing and saying, how do you get all that down on Paper without ending up with a huge confusing mess?
Putting the Story on Paper.
Everybody knows that when a new speaker speaks they get a new paragraph, right? In other words, you DON'T put two different people talking in the same paragraph. Okay, yeah, so anyone who has written any kind of fiction learns this pretty darned quick, (usually from their readers.)
What nobody seems to get is that the same goes for a new character's ACTIONS. Seriously, when a new character ACTS they're supposed to get their own paragraph -- even if they don't speak!
In short, you paragraph by change in CHARACTER -- not because they speak, but because they ACT. Ahem... Dialogue is an ACTION. In other words, the reason you don't put two different characters' Dialogue in the same paragraph is BECAUSE you don't mix two characters' Actions. Okay?
"Wait a minute,
Basics : AppearanceYour character is slowly taking shape! We know who it is now, how he or she acts, and his or her backstory. However, something's still missing in the equation. What does the character look like?Basics : Appearance5 years ago in Writing More Like This
This is the part which most people will often prefer writing, since it allows them to exert fashion sense, to give the character some flair, or to give an overall feel of what the character inspires at first glance (or all of the above). This is the time to be the most creative; your character needs to know what it looks like before stepping into action.
Although you might want to give a thousand accessories, multiple hair colours and epic clothes to your character, remember that moderation is the rule of thumb. Additionally, anything you add about your character's appearance should fit with it in some way. Though some people may be able to successfully pull off an ironic appearance for their character (I.E., a lord of evil in a tutu), I wouldn't recommend for newbie roleplayers to try it; a fl
Basics : PersonalityIf there's one thing which I look out for in a character sheet, it's the personality section. Of all the details you can add to a character sheet, personality is arguably the most important and the most crucial of them all. It defines exactly who your character is above their name, age, gender and species. That is who they truly are, because that is what people will see about them beyond what they look like and first impression, and the way that the character will act towards other people. "Other people" isn't just everyone in general; if a certain type of people will make your character act differently, it should be mentioned.Basics : Personality5 years ago in Writing More Like This
It's crucial that your character features a personality which you like and which you think you have a chance at imitating efficiently in a roleplay. If you don't like their personality, then chances are you won't like the character at all, and if you can't play the character's personality correctly, the other person or people you roleplay with may get disinteres
Basics : HistoryNow that you know how your character acts and reacts, maybe even the way they think, it's time to construct their history! This section, also sometimes called the "Bio", short for "Biography", is meant to contain any important events which happened in the character's past.Basics : History5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Kara's history isn't exactly a good example of that, however, since I tried to sever all the bonds I could between her and any world other than the tutorial world, and roleplays never do take place in the tutorial world (to my knowledge; if you've already witnessed a roleplay taking place in there, please tell me; I'd like to see the log). Unfortunately, that means that this tutorial will not feature a leading example...
When writing history, you might need to review personality and fit either to the other to make everything fit together; you wouldn't want to write all of your character's history without even realizing that several bits didn't fit with the personality, right?
Remember that any of the main history cat
Basics : Character SheetNow that you have at least a basic idea of how to roleplay with paragraph-style, you might be thinking you can just start roleplaying away as you please, right? Wrong! There are many more things you have to do before actually starting a roleplay. You need to find another person or a small group, discuss a plot and setting... but first of all, you need to make a character sheet!Basics : Character Sheet5 years ago in Writing More Like This
A character sheet defines who your character is; you might want to start roleplaying just like that, but if you don't know what character you're using, if you don't know who they are, or are unable to efficiently determine how they act, it'll most likely end in a clumsy attempt at roleplaying at best, until you've determined who your character is. Once you've been able to outline your character, the roleplay should go much more smoothly. It's always better to flesh out your character before beginning to use it.
Though certain characters are "sheetless", those who use them already know all there is to know about
Basics : Finding a PartnerNow that your character is ready for action, there's only one step separating you from roleplaying, and that's finding a roleplay partner. After all, roleplaying can't be done alone; you need someone to do it with.Basics : Finding a Partner5 years ago in Writing More Like This
This is a simple enough step of roleplaying; in several chatrooms, you would only need to ask: "Anyone want to RP?" and chances are you will find someone who will accept. However, in certain rooms, especially very crowded rooms such as #RPDream here on deviantArt, you will need to define what you're looking for and make a formal request, since there's tons of different roleplayers in there, and most of them know what they want and will not respond to a request that doesn't meet their tastes.
The first thing you need to define in your request is what you want to find in your roleplay, the genre; do you want it to be action, romance, adventure? There are lots of different genres; it's up to you to find out which ones you prefer. The genre will usually define what the plot will
Writing Emotions VISUALLYWriting Emotions VISUALLY5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Writing Emotions VISUALLY
"What is ...VISUAL writing?"
-- Visual writing is when the reader can SEE your story unfolding in their imaginations just like a movie.
* Non-visual: It was a dreary day.
* Visual: Icy rain slithered down the window glass from an iron gray sky.
This is more commonly known as SHOWING vs. TELLING.
* Telling: It was a dreary day.
* Showing: Icy rain slithered down the window glass from an iron gray sky.
"What's wrong with just...Telling them?"
-- The problem lays with Reader interpretation. Abstract (poetic) words and ideas rely on the readers' interpretation of what those words mean to them personally.
She was woefully depressed.
* How does Big Bird act when he's woefully depressed?
* How do Y
Tutorial :: Making a Plot Pt.2So, now you know the mechanics of a normal plot. So, what do you do with it?Tutorial :: Making a Plot Pt.25 years ago in Writing More Like This
Inspiration is the number one thing that can make or break your work of fiction. If you don't have a good idea, you're going to fail. Miserably. There is no substitute for inspiration. It's a magical thing; it cures writer's block, and it suddenly makes things much cheerier in your life.
My favorite way to gain inspiration is to think about plots when I'm laying in bed, trying to sleep. Counterproductive, I know. But, if you lead a busy life, you're more likely to be able to think of plot lines when you're not worrying about the latest homework assignment / work issue. Also, when you're thinking about it before bed, you're more likely to dream about it. Dreams work wonders for inspiration, so don't push the idea away if it seems outlandish. Make it work.
Okay, I've Got Inspiration
Creating a balanced characterWhat is a well balanced character?Creating a balanced character2 years ago in Other More Like This
A well balanced charater is one you would believe is really existing. Creating a character like this may seem not easy at all and sometimes even impossible but it is all about relating information about your character, a bit knowledge of human nature and psychology with each other.
If you manage to master this combination, you will be able to create characters that can come to life on their own.
Sounds good but pretty complex, right? Let me show you.
First of all: A character should always be the result of many factors being combined as I mentioned above.
-> Never say the creation progress is done when you miss out e.g. on important events in their backstory or did not mention their family/parents!
You can start out with different aspects and then build up the remaining parts very often but to keep some structure let's start with your characters backstory.
What happens to you in your life forms your personality and character.
Ever seen one of thos
Writing BEGINNINGS for Short StoriesWriting BEGINNINGS for Short Stories2 years ago in Writing More Like This
I was wondering if you had any tips on starting a short story? Like for instance, I have the scene all laid out in my head, I know exactly what's going on and stuff, I just don't know how to begin without giving away too much info and then boring the reader. If that make any sense.
Tips on how to make a beginning...?
-- Why, yes I do!
The fastest way to start a story -- is NOT at the beginning.
Open the story within one page of Hero Meets Villain, (or Lover Meets Beloved) with the story already in progress. Action scenes and snappy dialogue are the best hooks for snaring your reader, but hints of Mysterious things yet to happen works well too. I also set the stage for the story about to begin with a few lines of Description so that the reader can SEE everything as it happens.
Here are some examples from my fan-fiction:
Opening to HERO (Naruto)
It was supposed to be a
Basics : AlignmentsYou may have noticed by now that certain chatrooms ask for you to fill out an "alignment" section for your character sheet. This isn't their sexual orientation, nor is it if they are wall-eyed or cross-eyed. It's actually their tendencies towards good or evil as well as law or chaos. DnD players will be familiar with these.Basics : Alignments4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Every character follows what they think is the right thing to do, but each character has a different definition of what is right and what is wrong, as well as what they should do about it, and that is defined by their alignment. A character on the "good" alignment, for example, would think it will be right to help someone who's in danger. An evil character would think it might be best if the person didn't manage to overcome the ordeal, whereas a neutral character wouldn't mind either way. The way the character will ensure that their choices are carried out is their alignment towards law or chaos; lawful characters will usually try to stir up as little attention as t
The Necessity of Flaws in CharacterizationOkay. Close your eyes (well, maybe just one) and imagine your favorite fictional character. Are they strong? Compassionate and giving? Witty and clever? Wise and intelligent? No matter the make-up of their awesomeness, they probably bring a smile to your face and that warm, fuzzy feeling to your insides. You probably remember vividly their adventures and hijinks, their clever retorts, or how amazing they were at figuring out some wild and crazy puzzle. They probably inspired your own writing. You probably wanted to recreate that smile and fuzzy feeling with your own readers, so you made your version of the character (or took some of their traits) and integrated them into your prose.The Necessity of Flaws in Characterization3 years ago in Writing More Like This
This is all fine and dandy, especially considering there's nothing new under the sun, but there's a good chance you missed out on something really important. Let me explain.
It's great to have a badass character who kicks ass and takes name. But what makes them so badass? Is it that they can lift a Hummer w
Basics : First PostsNow, let's say you've found a partner and have decided to start a roleplay after defining a plot and setting. There still is one problem you have to solve. You have to make a first post.Basics : First Posts5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Every roleplay begins with this. It's inevitable. It's what sets the mood, and what defines everything about what takes place in the roleplay. Your first post in a roleplay will usually be your longest. It's your one and only chance to give the setting once and for all. The more you describe, the more effective the "pre-emptive strike post" will be; it leaves less room for the other player to post conflicting information in their first post. HOWEVER! A roleplay is supposed to be a collective story; it's only normal that some parts of the universe the characters are developing in wouldn't have been thought by you. You can define a world well, but you should usually not restrain your partner from adding their two cents to it.
If you are the first to post a first post (redundancy?), you will have to answe
Writing Tips - Grammar, pt 1Writing Tips - Grammar, pt 16 years ago in Writing More Like This
Part one: Parts of Speech
Now that you know how to use a comma and structure a quote, lets really get our hands dirty! Because all those commas and quotes and hard stops dont mean a thing if you have weak grammar. Grammar is huge. Theres a lot of it, so this will only be a blitz course, covering a lot in a small space. Hopefully, you already know most of it, though.
Parts of Speech
Thats right. Were doing sentence diagramming in this lesson. Youre going to need to know the difference between an adjective and an adverb later on, so this seems the logical place to start.
A sentence needs three things to make it a sentence. It needs a subject, a verb, and it needs to be a complete thought.
The subject is usually, but not always, a noun, a proper noun, or a pronoun.
Nouns: Nouns are something physical. Look to your left. What do you see? Thats a noun.
° Please pass me that book.
Proper Nouns: Proper nouns are exactly what
Point of ViewPoint of View5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Point of View AKA Narrative Mode
Quite basically, who's telling the story? Not necessarily which character, since that doesn't always really play much of a factor, but rather who the chronicler is. As a general rule, you want the point of view to remain the same throughout, although, we'll talk a bit more on that later, and why people tend to hate it.
This is Running with Scissors or How to Lose Friends and Alienate People (the books; not the later live-action adaptations). The whole of the story is told in the words of the main character. By definition, first person point of view is limited, meaning that the narrator can only tell us what s/he has personally witnessed. And for obvious reasons.
° "It was one of those jobs that just got way too big way too fast. Before we knew it, the feds got called in for something completely unrelated. Course, we didn't know that, so we panicked."
The narrator tells us what they know, what they remember,