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6 Steps to Compiling Your Novel's Three-Act Outline

Anybody Can Write a Novel

Chapter 2 “Creating a Plot” – Section 2 “Compiling a Three-Act Outline”

With Links to Supplementary Material

Part 1 of 2 (Link to Part 2)


Now that you have a Plot Premise, I'm sure that you have all kinds of ideas for the things you want to happen in your story—which you probably have written down in your Writing Journal. Well, today we are going to begin to organize those thoughts into groups and begin our Plot Outline by establishing a Three-Act Structure.


Step 1: Open a new word document entitled “Story Outline”

Now that we have so many pieces of your Outline ready to go, it is finally time (if you haven't done so already) to compile a Master Outline/Resource Booklet, by which you will be writing the entirety of your novel. The goal of this document is to make sure that you have as little down time, writing blocks, and aimless story wandering as possible.


Step 2: Write down your Plot Premise.

This is your thesis statement—it should be the first thing you look at every time you begin working on your story, so that you never forget the basic story that you wish to tell.


Step 3: Write down your Timeline.

This is the device that I use more than anything else when I am actually writing. Your Timeline will be what gives you the logic and basis by which your entire world runs.


Step 4: Add your World Maps and World Creation Sheets.

Along with the Timeline, these will be another resource that you will use as a basis for your protagonist's journey, and how they react/are reacted to by every landscape, people group, and environment in your created world.


Step 5: Use the Three-Act Outline Template and fill in the blanks.

You have probably noticed that everything up to now has been a recap and compilation of previous articles. The Three-Act Template is the real addition here. I've done some research, compiled plot structure ideas, looked at several different theories on the Three-Act system, and have created a fill-in-the-blank outline. Just open the above link, fill out the outline, and then save it to your Story Outline document.


Step 6: Be prepared for changes and adaptions as your writing progresses.

Remember that you will come across contradictions, plot-holes, and other complications as you actually begin to write your story. This is to be expected; the Outline only exists to guide you from one plot-point to another so that you can be sure that you have a complete story, are not writing aimlessly, and are less likely to encounter writer's block. Feel free to change, adapt, and play with your Outline as the need arises, or as you think of better ideas that will lead to a more dynamic story.


A concluding note: as I said earlier, we are using concrete structure for two reasons: to give you boundaries by which you can enhance your creativity, and to create a method by which anyone can write a novel. But, you should also know that a convention of writing is to break the rules and the structure. However, to break any rule efficiently and not seem like an amateur, you have to know the rule so that when you break it, the audience knows that it was done with artful intent. Therefore, I encourage you to write your first draft completely within the realm of plot structure, and then break, in your subsequent drafts, only structure that would lead to a better novel.


Feel free to comment with other suggested resources. Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature my response in a later article. If you enjoy my reviews, please feel free to share my articles with friends, add it to your favorites, become a watcher on my page, or send send a llama my way!


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa… (Feel free to “Like” and subscribe)

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…

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This is Part 1 of 2 (Link to Part 2) for the process of creating your story's Three-Act outline. Part 1 is kind of a recap, an attempt to tie all the articles so far together, and an introduction for the Outline Template (found in part 2). If you have been reading all the articles from the beginning, and are up-to-date, I recommend reading the intro and conclusion, and points 1, 5, and 6. Then, just click the link to the main article for the day (again, part 2). 
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3 Tips on Writing a Novel that aren't Complete Bullshit


Today, I spent a good many hours scouring the internet for tips on improving my writing. You know, useful and practical suggestions for someone who has actually written a bit and wants hints on some of the finer points of writing—you know, as opposed to just wanting to learn how to get publishers interested in the latest Hunger Games or Twilight knock-off. Well, other than the two masters of storytelling—Stan Lee and Stephen King—I found nothing. I thought to myself, “Blake, even you could offer better writing advice than this!” And so I have. Here are three non-subjective tips for the beginning writer.


Tip 1: Pay attention to “Point of View” (POV)

The first mistake I made in writing my novel, and one that I have seen in every single beginning writer's work that I have edited since, is that I did not really pay attention to POV and narration. When telling a story, it is important to remember two things. First, nobody wants God to tell the story. In a room filled with a dozen people, there is so much going on inside everyone's head and in their actions that it would fill a book in about an hour. And when there is simply too much going on, the reader ceases to care and is very confused. After all, if the reader was God, he or she would not spend their time listing every monotonous detail of what they were seeing, but instead finding something more interesting to watch—which brings me to point number two. Pick a focus character (or one at a time) and tell the story through that person's eyes. This way, readers will pick up on the important details, while also having a single-focus lens to look through. If this doesn't make sense, imagine how much better a movie is with just one camera's perspective used at a time, as opposed to the six of them all being played simultaneously.


Tip 2: Outline your story.

I used to prefer just writing free-style, as most writers begin doing. But, when you do that, two major things happen. First, with the lack of direction, you stop caring where you are going with the story, since there is no dramatic force that can force along pointless meandering. Second, even if you do not lose interest, your plot will be a noodle-like mess with no structure, and your audience will lose interest—just like with a television series with no end or destination in sight. Even if you love the characters, you eventually just give up watching because it becomes a dull act of voyeurism where you are just watching a vignette of a life without any actual story. If a solid outline is too restricting, try using the 3-Act Story Structure en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three-ac… and just write a paragraph describing each Act. This structure will turn the pasta into a carefully molded form until you find yourself eating a Lasagna instead of soggy, wet noodles.


Tip 3: Don't overpower your characters.

At the most basic level, reading a novel is an escape from the world around us. As such, we want the worlds we create in our stories, as well as the characters, to be the embodiment of the ideals we wish were reality. As such, we create flawless heroes or perfectly flawed heroes, and villains that embody all the evil we see around us, which we wish could be defeated. However, to do so turns your story into a poor sermon, and a badly biased one at that. Not only that, but the audience immediately begins to hate your characters, unless they are the brainwashed sort of readers who think that Dr. Manhattan was the hero of “Watchmen” or that being a hero when you are invulnerable and beloved by those around you means that you are “good” or have some sort of depth of character—as opposed to being a fascist with an old-fashioned set of principals that you impose on the world (any other Lex Luthor fans in the house?). Instead, you should seek to create characters that illustrate the complexities and flaws in everything, even and especially in your own moral code. You want to create real characters for your audience to believe in and empathize with. In practice, you should be able to name off three things that you genuinely admire your villains for, as well as three things you genuinely despise about your heroes—giving them flaws to overcome. And avoid the pseudo-flaws that plague literature (the hero who is just too kind for his own good, or the hero whose traumatic past had made her into a hardened bitch with a secret heart of gold). Doing this creates real characters that your audience can truly escape through and even learn genuine lessons from—making you, the writer, the real hero of the story.


Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature the answer in a later article.


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa…

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…

7 Steps for Ridding Your Story of Melodrama


Melodrama, strictly defined, means a “song drama,” of the French tradition. The tradition of this story was characterized by over-the-top emotions, to the point that the character's emotions were unintentionally funny, or ridiculous. Melodrama in modern literature, is a term used for when the emotions of your characters are absurd, petty, beyond control, and seem to overshadow the story; and today I'm going to talk about overcoming the melodrama in your story. Please note that this is something to be considered in the editing process, not in the first draft. There will be melodrama—but don't worry about it until you have a whole story down on paper or digital ink.


Step 1: Identify the melodrama in your story.

If you have written a first draft with a good number of characters with different wants and desires, there WILL be melodrama. And so your first step will go to every scene where there are emotional flares—of love, inspiration, anger, sadness, and disagreement. Then, mark them and collect them into a compilation of scenes with similar editing requirements—using the following steps as a checklist for each one.


Step 2: Read the scene aloud, and imagine it happening in real life.

If you have any friend who will help you read parts, it will be especially helpful here. The goal of reading each of these scenes, like a script, is to imagine two (or however many) real people walking the streets and then suddenly engaging in this dialogue. If you can get an audience, even better. If not, record yourself with a phone, audio device, or camera, and then watch it several times over several weeks.


Step 3: Note if you would feel embarrassed to use your dialogue in real life.

When you publish a story, you are putting it before the worst of bullies, mockers, and critics to tear your work apart publicly. Get the jump on them by putting yourself in the shoes of these people. How would YOU make fun of how corny and unrealistic your dialogue is? Then adapt it until it gets to the point that you and your audience could imagine yourselves impressed if you heard it randomly in the street. Remember that dramatic speeches and conversations certainly happen—but ONLY when situations demand nothing less.


Step 4: Check yourself to make sure that you are not speaking through your characters.

Often, scenes of melodrama come from rants or passionate speeches that we have built up within us, and feel that we need to shout it at the world. However, your audience will detect this change of voice, and so must you. Go through each scene and check to see if any of them trigger emotions from your own past—unrelated to the story. If they do, circle them or highlight them for careful editing. You won't necessarily need to cut it, but you need to know that it is a danger zone.


Step 5: Temper extreme emotions with ambivalence.

Humans are complex creatures, and only very rarely do we feel extremely polar emotions like utter hatred or unconditional love. Therefore, there is little to justify this in your characters, short of mental illness and obsession. Find all of the extreme emotions, and reconsider how you could make them more complex ones. Love should be mixed with emotions like fear, or disappointment—hate mixed with secret jealousies, love, or even a sort of comradery with those who are respectable enough to merit hate.


Step 6: Embrace the expected emotions of a situation.

Go through every scene and imagine what a normal person would do, feel, or say in that situation. Of course, this will not normally be what a hero or antihero might do or say, but you must imagine what natural emotions and feelings every scene would produce. A scene where one's life is in peril may produce courage, but only after you deal with the initial, and continued emotion of fear. Make sure that every scene of potential melodrama contains the mixed sort of emotions that each of us would feel in that given situation.


Step 7: Remember that your characters must be flawed in order to be relatable to your audience.

The last step in removing melodrama, is to remove perfection. Although one-liners and perfect speeches may be fun, and they may be what we wish we could do in an ideal world, rarely is it the case in real life. Real characters rarely know how to put their thoughts and emotions into words. They know that inspirational speeches often feel hollow, or the speech comes from a scared and shaky voice that is trying hard to believe itself as well. When real people speak, they deal with self-doubt, fear, stuttering, and obsession—all which make their words less perfect. But this imperfection will be what makes your characters come to life. Embrace them, and remember that sometimes the perfect words, emotions, and actions fall very short of the flawed ones that can take your story so much further.


Feel free to comment with other suggested resources. Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature my response in a later article. If you enjoy my reviews, please feel free to share my articles with friends, add it to your favorites, become a watcher on my page, or send send a llama my way!


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa…

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…


Melodrama in modern literature, is a term used for when the emotions of your characters are absurd, petty, beyond control, and seem to overshadow the story; and today I'm going to talk about overcoming the melodrama in your story. Please note that this is something to be considered in the editing process, not in the first draft. There will be melodrama—but don't worry about it until you have a whole story down on paper or digital ink.


Feel free to comment with other suggested resources. Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature my response in a later article. If you enjoy my reviews, please feel free to share my articles with friends, add it to your favorites, become a watcher on my page, or send send a llama my way!


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa…

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…


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6 Steps to Compiling Your Novel's Three-Act Outline

Anybody Can Write a Novel

Chapter 2 “Creating a Plot” – Section 2 “Compiling a Three-Act Outline”

With Links to Supplementary Material

Part 2 of 2


Joseph Blake Parker's Very Original and Super Complex Three-Act Outline Template


(Not really—this is all standard and basic stuff with no original thought other than my self-indulgent title, and the explanations. I honestly only made this because I couldn't find one online to share with you peeps, and didn't want to mess up the structure of my article by adding it there. Obsessive Compulsive Personality moment, I guess. Please keep in mind that there are many theories as to a proper Three-Act Structure; this one is just a hybrid of all the things I thought most comprehensive.)



Instructions: Delete all the explanations that are written in italics and replace them with the events/plot-points that occur within your story.



----- Plot Premise Goes Here -----



Act I (Setting up the Story)


Beginning (Prologue)

-Reveal your world, your story type, your protagonist, and what things were like right before the Inciting Incident, where the story started.


Inciting Incident

-This is what happens so that your Protagonist's world is forever changed, so that they must decide to act.


First Turning Point (Call to Action)

-This is an event that is even more life-changing (but related to) than the Inciting Incident, as is what causes the protagonist must decide how they are going to react to the Inciting Incident.


Act II (Confronting the Antagonists—feel free to sprinkle fights and confrontations all through this Act)


Rising Action

-Your protagonist tries to achieve his/her goal, but is not skilled or capable enough to do so. Fails, but grows from failure, and begins to seek help or to strengthen him/herself. Things begin to gradually get better/worse, depending upon what sort of story you are telling, and upon the natural consequences of the protagonist's actions.


First Pinch Point/Main Confrontation

-Half-way through Act II, the main antagonist will do something very dark or critical, forcing the protagonist to react. This is the main confrontation. For example, telling the hero that if they do not give up, they will blow up the city. This is to show your readers the power set against the protagonist.


Midpoint

-The protagonist reacts to the first pinch point, and confronts the antagonist. The protagonist fails.


Disaster

-The hero deals with the consequences of failure.


Second Pinch Point

-The power of the antagonist is shown again—causing the hero to feel forced to action, even as they deal with their previous failure and its consequences.


Crisis/Second Turning Point

-The protagonist has a new or renewed Call to Action. They realize that even with everything that has happened, they must act.


Act III (Resolution)


Stand up

-the protagonist again rises to the challenge, with a renewed sense of self and self-discovery.


Climax

-the protagonist overcomes or is overcome by the antagonist, and the story is concluded.


Wrap-up/Epilogue

-Just like the Beginning/Prologue, establish how your world and characters are changed by the events of the story. What is considered the norm after the story concludes?





Acknowledgments:


While the explanations and final list are of my original writing, as was the idea to create a Three-Act Outline Template, the data was inspired, taught, and defined by the following sources. I highly recommend further learning on the topic from their websites.


WikipediaThree-act structure”



Janice HardyHow to Plot With the Three-Act Structure”



Kimberley MagainApplying Negative Space to Storytelling (fiction)”



Larry Brooks The Help” – Isolating and Understanding the First “Pinch Point”



Karen WoodwardUsing Pinch Points To Increase Narrative Drive”




Feel free to comment with other suggested resources. Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature my response in a later article. If you enjoy my reviews, please feel free to share my articles with friends, add it to your favorites, become a watcher on my page, or send send a llama my way!


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa… (Feel free to “Like” and subscribe)

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…

And: josephblakeparker.deviantart.c…

Instructions: Delete all the explanations that are written in italics and replace them with the events/plot-points that occur within your story.  

Please keep in mind that there are many theories as to a proper Three-Act Structure; this one is just a hybrid of all the things I thought most comprehensive

Links to Supplementary Learning Material at the end of the page. 

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She ran, her heart pumping and the crying babe in her arms growing heavier. The pain in her lower abdomen was like hot fire escaping all over her body. Her legs fought her desire to keep moving and she hugged her son tighter. She couldn’t stop now, not now. Gritting her teeth, she broke into a sprint. Limbs tore at her face and arms, their wicked thorns biting into her skin. Above her, the red moon shone brightly in the night, lighting the path ahead.


“Only a little farther, my son.” She panted into his silver hair.


He clung to her, his tiny fingers curling into the folds of her dress. His cry hurt her ears, but the pain was a pleasant reminder that he was still alive.


They’d meant to kill him, this alien child that had grown in her belly—her child. Regardless of his blood, she loved him. He was hers, her son. Instinctively, she adjusted her arms, wrapping them tighter around him, and kissed his forehead.


Abruptly, the path dipped low into a ravine. Swamp water splashed her thighs as she dove into the muck, her feet sinking into the silt. Balancing her son on her hip, she forced her way through the thickening foliage. Once on the other side, she hurried off into the trees, hoping the cover would give her enough time to lose her pursuers. She was so close.


The shadows enveloped her as she quickened her pace again, trying her best to ignore the mounting pain. Zev’s cries were becoming deafening. The louder they became, the easier she was to follow. She had to quieten him down. Holding his head close to hers, she began to sing in his ear. Her voice was uneven and short, but he responds nonetheless, his fingers curling into her wild hair and his head pressing into her.


“Yes, my son.” she panted into his ear. “I won’t let anyone harm you.”


Several minutes later, she arrived at a break in the trees and she stopped for the first time, her legs itching and throbbing. The pain was so bad she could barely keep her focus. Swallowing hard, she grabbed onto what concentration she had left and stepped forward into the open meadow. It was masked by an endless blanket of white flowers dyed pink in the nightlight. Running water whispered around her, cutting a curving path from one side of the meadow to the other. Beyond the mouth of the stream sat a small cottage. The one window revealed a flickering fire just beyond the animal hide curtain. She could see a moving shadow.


“Skelly,” she coughed dryly.


Her vision blurred and swayed as she lurched across the sharp rocks of the stream, alarming Zev and causing him to grip her neck tighter. Murmuring in his ear, she almost fell as she approached the door. Her upper body propelled forward despite her feet’s intention to stop. She collided none too gently, turning as she did to protect Zev, and her shoulder connected harshly with thick wood. She uttered a cry. Zev began to whimper softly and she tried to hush him.


Behind the door, there was a sound of shuffling feet. Then, brightness poured around a man silhouetted by firelight as it was open. Relief swelled her heart and she grinned deliriously at him. “Skelly!”


“Marali?” His dark eyes widened. “What are you…?” He paused, his gaze falling to the cooing child in her arms.


“Skelly. Please!” The desperation cracked her voice to pieces. “Help me.” Tears fell freely now, creating watery tracks down her cheeks amid the dust and grit.


He gazed back up at her, the shock and loathing evident. She had no one else. The knowledge of that tightened around her heart like a vice.


“What have you done?” He asked, completely at a loss.


“I am doing what I know is right.” She hissed through her teeth, the pain twisting her face.


He reached for her, but she shook her head and moved to hand him the child. He instantly recoiled. “No.”


“He’s my son! I want him to live!” Marali sobbed, the exhaustion finally catching up to her, and she almost fainted. He caught her, though she quickly pulled away and presented her son to him again. “I won’t let them hurt him! Please, Skelly. Please!”



Skelly looked between her and the child, bewildered. “Marali, he’s the son of the monster that…” His voice trailed away. He couldn’t say anymore. The hatred paralyzed his tongue and clamped his jaws.


“He’s my son.” She growled shakily. “Mine.”


Despite everything, he was hers. He wouldn’t be like his father; this she knew. Looking into his bright green eyes, she saw only her reflection peering back at her. You’re mine, she thought. You always will be.


Finally, Skelly nodded as if understanding, but his eyes were still frigid. “You should both come in—”


“No.” Marali interrupted. “You must keep him safe. They won’t suspect him here. I’ll come back at the next sunset to take him.”


Skelly took the child and glanced back at her worriedly. She looked so tired and frail. “Where will you go?”


“I will raise my son away from here.” She replied with a distant smile. “I will go deep into the woods, so no man might look upon him and desire to hurt him.”


“He is of their filthy blood.” Skelly averted his eyes from the child, revolted again. “You can’t keep him a secret forever. The world will want him dead the moment he is discovered.”


“His name is Zev.” She seemed to ignore him and reached out to caress the baby’s hair.


“Why did you disobey, Marali? Why did you let this child live? Look at you! You can barely stand!”


She looked up at Skelly, suddenly appearing beyond her years. “I don’t know. I just know that he has a good heart.”


Skelly’s scoffed, his voice taking on a razor edge. “How can you? He is a curse like the rest of his people.”


“No! My son is good.” She turned away, her shoulders trembling. “Why won’t you trust me, Skelly? You are the only person I can trust. Please, I’m begging you. Trust me.”


Reluctantly, he nods. “Alright. I trust you.”


Tears gathered in her eyes again and she hugged him tightly, her lips finding his. He returned her kiss desperately, his free hand cradling her face. As they part, Zev giggled, smiling for the first time. They both look at him in awe.


“Babies can’t smile like that so early.” He breathed.


Marali plants a tender kiss on Zev’s cheek and looks back to Skelly. “Please don’t judge him before you know his heart. You love me, do you not? My son is a part of me.”


Skelly attempts to speak, but she walks back out the door and turns one last time to him, the red moon creating a strange halo around her head. “That moon,” she points up to it. “That is his moon, Skelly. Don’t ever let him forget.”


For the first time he held Zev close, his dusky mustache tickling the child’s forehead. Her request sounded final. He didn’t like it. It was all over his face. Fear. There was no reasoning with her on this, though. She had made her decision. He gazes intently at her, helpless. “I won’t. You promise to come back.”


She smiled, but there was a brokenness hidden deep in her eyes. “I promise.”


With that, she disappeared into the darkness leaving Skelly with Zev, worn out from weeping and falling fast asleep in his arms.  She intended to come back. She’d fight to come back, but she already knew...
Original Fiction【Angels Fell First : Covenant】

Rating :
  PG-13/T
Pairing(s) / Character(s) : Skelly, Marali, & Zev
Word Count : approx. 1300

DO NOT POST ON TUMBLR FROM YOUR BLOG! REBLOG IT FROM MY OWN ART BLOG


So I have finally completed the prologue for my project, Angels Fell First. :D I will likely edit this in the future. This is mainly just a revised rough draft. LOL! By no means is it the final product. The preview image is of Zev and his love interest Amunet. What I tried to convey with this prologue is the danger Marali (pronounced Ma-ra-lie) is in for keeping her son alive. She keeps saying he is her son, because she feels that he shouldn't be punished for what his ancestors of his father's bloodline did in the past. Skelly is not only averse to keeping Zev for who his father was, but for what his father did to Marali. Zev was the product of rape. That's another reason I highlighted Marali's desire to keep him alive. She doesn't blame him for his father's wrongs to her, either, which plays a huge roll in Zev accepting who he is throughout the story. Below is a reference sheet for Zev for anyone that is curious. ^_^

Ref. Sheet : Zev by AngelicHellraiser


CHARACTER(S) BELONG TO AngelicHellraiser
ART BELONGS TO : melloskitten & Mizury
Deviation Buttons: Anti Theft by Metadream:iconthnxplz:Critique please by Metadream

(I have trouble with my hands and typing, so know that I'm very thankful for every fave and comment.)

Angels Fell First : Covenant :
OF Teaser : Angels Fell First : Covenant (CH1)
The red wolf moon—the color of the blood in our veins, only brighter.
That’s what Skelly had told him in his youth when he’d asked about the crescent blade in the sky. He’d said it while tipping his wide-brimmed hat and lifting the boy up into those wiry arms. His breath had been a smoky whisper. “That’s your moon, Zev. You’re mother told me that a long time ago.”
“Why papa?” Skelly preferred Zev to use his given name, but it always felt more natural to him this way. Father...
The old man studied him for a moment, that familiar scowl returning to his already weathered eyes. “Because you’re chosen, boy.”
“Chosen for what...?”

**********
Zev sprints down a shadowed alleyway, hoping the guards haven’t spotted him. His breath catches in his throat and he swallows dryly. Ahead of him, the alleyway dead ends. Oh no. His heart sinks.
Trapped.
He can’t go back the way he


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7 Considerations for World-building with Purpose

“Anybody Can Write a Novel”

Chapter 1 World-building – Section 1 Story Types

With Links to Supplementary Material


When crafting a novel, the first thing you need to know is what type of story you are writing. I'm sure that anybody reading this has a pretty good idea of what they want their story to be about. But for writing with strategic purpose, it is important to answer a few specific questions. Doing so will allow you to establish and purposefully design the foundations for your world, plot, the characters in your story. So grab some notebook paper, or copy this article into a word document, and write down all your answers to the following questions, as will best help you in designing your story.


Question 1: Are you writing a Comedy or a Tragedy?

This question comes first because all other story types fall within this question. And while there are many types and definitions of comedy and tragedy, it all basically comes down to one question: what happens to your hero in the end? Will they triumph or at least find a happy place to settle, or will the world and plot you have created crush or even kill them? Remember that both of these story types deal with the pains and struggles of life; it is just a matter of deciding who wins in the end.


Question 2: What are you trying to accomplish with your story?

Think about, and clearly define what you hope to accomplish with writing your story—how you want it to affect your reader. Whether you are trying to create hope, to instill anger that drives them to change the world, to entertain, to escape the drudgery of the real world, or anything else, make sure that you know why you are writing, and craft your story accordingly. Tragedy, for example, is more effective in urging your readers to action, while comedy can allow them to have hope in the future.


Question 3: Which of the Basic Story Types does your story fall into?

There are many theories as to how many types of story there are—ranging from one to as many as 36 or more. And it is not so important that you conform to an established “type” as much as that you are able to clearly define what your story does. Doing so establishes a goal for designing the plot of your story. For example: is your story about a quest, revenge, overcoming adversity, finding love, perusing forbidden love, survival, rescue, etc...


Question 4: What type of antagonist does your story require?

Perhaps the biggest factor in determining what type of story you are writing, is that which stands between your protagonist and his or her goals. Are they fighting nature, another person, their world, technology, magic, an ideal, a political movement, themselves, God/gods, or something else? Answering this question, and the question of your protagonist's goal, will indicate exactly what sort of story you are writing.


Questions 5: What is your story's genre?

There are countless genres and hybrids of genres that exist within the realm of literature. Like story type, it is not so important that you use an established genre—in fact, you should feel free to mix genres together if you wish—just as long as you know what you are writing and stay consistent. My mistake in my first novel was trying to cross too many genres as I thought the individual chapter required. I wanted to be scary in the beginning and funny at the end. But failing to keep your story uniform, waters down the atmosphere and undermines the power of your story.


Question 6: What is the intensity of your story?

With any genre, you have multiple intensities. Are you writing dark humor or light humor? Heavy sci-fi that anyone can read casually and enjoy, or heavy sci-fi which requires a certain amount of dedication and preference from your audience? Choosing the intensity will often be linked to whether you are writing Comedy or Tragedy, and will dictate what audience demographic will be interested in your work.


Question 7: Is your story of High Art or Low Art?

Before I explain this, let me just say that I hate the title for this classification system. High Art simply means that it applies to a more specific and exclusive audience demographic, whereas Low Art can be appreciated by a larger audience demographic. It has nothing to do with quality—Shakespeare's work, in fact, was Low Art at the time which it was written. This classification goes along with your story's intensity, to dictate how large the audience niche for your story will be. This question will help you to set the atmosphere of your story—and dictate whether your story should include specific political themes, inside jokes, and jargon, or whether you should use more universal themes, humor, and language that could be understood in multiple cultures and education levels.


I hope this article in my chapter on “World-building” is helpful in defining what kind of story you want to create. Next time, I will be focusing on the technical details of creating an actual world that your characters live in. Please let me know if you have any relevant questions on the topic of “World-building” or anything you would like me to address.


Feel free to comment with other suggested resources. Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature my response in a later article. If you enjoy my reviews, please feel free to share my articles with friends, add it to your favorites, become a watcher on my page, or send send a llama my way!


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa… (Feel free to “Like” and subscribe)

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…


When crafting a novel, the first thing you need to know is what type of story you are writing. I'm sure that anybody reading this has a pretty good idea of what they want their story to be about. But for writing with strategic purpose, it is important to answer a few specific questions. Doing so will allow you to establish and purposefully design the foundations for your world, plot, the characters in your story. So grab some notebook paper, or copy this article into a word document, and write down all your answers to the following questions, as will best help you in designing your story.  

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6 Steps to Making Every Chapter of your Novel Most Excellent


The number one reason for people refusing to read a book is boredom. And no matter how much good content can be found if one just “sticks it out,” it will never be found if your readers have to drudge through even a single boring chapter. So, for both writing and post-draft editing, here are 6 steps to making EVERY chapter most excellent.


Step 1: Create a three-act plot structure for each chapter.

Every chapter of a novel should be a short story in and of itself—almost like a comic book or television drama. Now, it is not essential that the three-act plot structure be done perfectly, but every chapter should have the hero encountering a problem, growing from that experience, and a climax where the hero overcomes or is overcome by the problem. Doing this will make sure that every chapter is vital to the story and that something is always happening.


Step 2: Make every chapter opening a hook.

The hook might be the single most important guide to getting a reader to not put down your book. All too often, I read the first line of a book or chapter, and am immediately met with boring dialogue or exposition. Make your most interesting and striking impression the very first line of the chapter, and you will ensure that the reader feels compelled to continue.


Step 3: Make sure you can name the objective of that chapter in one sentence.

This rule goes along with the idea that each chapter should be purposeful. The way I do this is that I caption each chapter with the major plot point I covered. This gives me a goal to accomplish—fulfilling that plot point—and ensures that every chapter moves the story along.


Step 4: Analyze it against other chapters and ask yourself if the story would lose anything if you cut it.

When you have finished a draft of your novel, go through each chapter and imagine cutting it completely. Would the story still make sense? Would it lose anything? If your answer is that the story would be in the same place as if the chapter were not there, then cut it and store it away as research. Remember, there is no such thing as wasted writing, but there are some chapters that should not be in the final draft. Perhaps that one only existed for you, the author, to figure some things out about your characters and the plot.


Step 5: End on a cliffhanger.

After concluding the basic plot of your chapter (all three acts) present a new situation and end on a cliffhanger. This is the secret to creating a “page-turner” novel, as opposed to one that a reader can simply put back on the shelf after finishing each chapter. In addition, this will give you, the writer, a good starting place for when you begin writing the next chapter. You already have a problem to deal with, and you do not have to waste time twiddling your thumbs and looking at a blank document, waiting for inspiration for what will happen next.


Step 6: After finishing a chapter, take note as to the status and changes in your characters.

Taking note as to the status of your characters does a few things to help your story along. First, it helps you to keep track of where your characters are, physically—as nothing is more annoying than writing four or five chapters and realizing that you left a minor character in the woods, or them having said nothing for that entire time. Second, taking these notes will ensure that your characters are changing and shifting with the story, creating a truly dynamic experience for the reader.


Following these guidelines will ensure that your readers have a most excellent experience, and that each chapter pulls them into your story even deeper.


Feel free to comment with other suggested resources. Any questions about writing? Things you want me to discuss? Comment or send me a message and I will be glad to reply or feature my response in a later article.


Originally posted at www.facebook.com/JosephBlakePa…

And: josephblakeparker.wix.com/theb…


For everyone who found this article to be helpful to their writing, I just wanted to let you know that koimonster22 (I hope that link worked) created a corresponding template that goes well with this article, to organize your notes for each chapter. Check it out!
 Chapter Outline Template by koimonster22

6 Steps to making every chapter of your novel purposeful and engaging. 
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Where do mechs come from, daddy?
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We all got to be at the top...



You was very well known on the seas in the world...First Female Pirate.You looked like any girl,but your attitude changed the look.You was never once submissive,even with all this mens on your ship,they never dared to touch you or to treat you like any other sea whore..Oh No.That really wasn't going to happen'...or so you thought?

You were now curently lookin at the sea that was like your own world.Your look was something that many womans in the old days wished to looked like.Your white shimmy tight on your torso and breasts,the dark blue shorts tight on your ass,the long black leather boots,the dark blue coat with red old fashioned ornaments,the signature captain black hat with a red big feather,the creamy porcelain skin and red luciouse lips with the big irestible eyes and your [h/l],[h/c] hair,you was the sea beauty.You was one of the most riches pirates that went on the seas.Your sword attached on your belt in case,well anythings happens.In your entyire pirate life you have encountered many dangers and you learned from mistakes.

The breeze of the sea was something you loved,but you missed the old days when you looked like an innocent little girl who played with dolls and animals.And to think that girl was you and now...you were a cruel cold-hearted pirate.Your mother always wished you to be the perfect wife with a great family and a lovely husband.These were just dreams that little girls thought off,you had no time for a husband and children..the fuck was wrong with your mother?You really couldn't stand little children with their unstoppable cries for their parents.Life was cruel and you knew this well.

"Captain!We spoted a ship in the distance,what should we do?"your "right hand" crew member said.
"Keep on positions and get ready!"you ordered and in no time every member of the crew was on their posts.You was used to this kind of things,spotting ships,fighting,but...what you didn't know is that this wasn't just like any ordinary pirate you had meet.

Then a cannon ball was released,almost shooting your ship.Then another one and so on.
"Shot on!!!You bloody gits!!"you ordered at the crew members and so on a fight was released between the two ships.Some crew members from the enemie ship got on your ship fighting with your crew members.Swords clinging together and metal sounds and screams of anger,pain was heared.

Then you saw HIM...From the first look you could tell anytime...Arthur Kirkland,the most infamouse pirate on this seas.Blonde shaggy hair,pircing eremald eyes that could shot trought your soul,pirate clothes,red coat,eye patch,captain hat with the fluffy feather on top and the sword in his hand.You got ready to fight this bastard,but waited for him to make the first move,you wasn't going to make such a foolish mistake,you was better than that and you knew very well this.When the both crew member ships stoped in their tracks and looked at both of the captains.It was quiet,then Arthur broke the silence.

"So,you're [full name]?The first female captain pirate in the entire world?I must say dear that you look to fragile to be a pirate,besides pirates are just for mens to be."he said in an arrogant smarty tone whice annoyed the hell of you.How dare he say that womans cannot be pirates!What you hated the most is when means thought that the female humanity was under their status.Racism,nothing more to say.You tried your best to control your anger,whice was hard,considering that cocky smirk of his.You glared at him,anger boiling in your veins.

"Now now,love...no need to make such a face,it ruins your beautiful features of yours~"he said getting closer to you.You wasn't going to let your guard down,just because he gave you a simple nice comment.You knew pirates,after all you where one of them.They are willing to do anything to gain what they wanted...and in the end they got it,one way or another.This time you wasn't going to wait,so you aimed the sword at him,just to block it with his sword.You got your sword free and aimed again and so on the fight contiuned...untile you got on one of the old day tricks If you could call them.He blocked your sword and swung his sword in a way that made you lose your grasp from it and you  fall on the ground,then in a blink of eyes his sword was pointed at your chin.

"Looks like I won...pore little [Name]~"he said in a mocking voice.
"Stop mocking me and calling me little you damn asshole!!"you yelled at him,despite your actual position.
"I don't think that you're in anny position to use such words..."he was really pissing you off"I suggest you to surrender or I'm gonna blow this ship up in no seconde or better...I'm gonna kill your every loved member of this crew and let you watch it...ot be a good girl and come with me...your choice."he said.You may be a cruel pirate,but you loved your crew members despise the fact that you treate them like scum bags.You sighed in defeat,embarassed that you was really that weak.

"Alright,but you better keep your promise or I swear that I'm gonna kill you with my bare hands." you said,venom in your voice.
"Don't worry,love~..I always keep my promise."he said as you got up and went with him and his crew member just when you turned around you saw that all your preciouse and valuable belongings were taken in his ship.You was very angery now..how dare he steal from you!
"Oi!What do you think you're going-"you was cut off when he placed his index finger on your lips."I may said what I said....but I get everything that should be mine...including you and your very special belongings."he said with a smirk.Yeah...fooled by a pirate...how ironic huh?

When everything was on his ship it stared off and went far away from your now empty ship with its members that didn't know what to do.You knew very well and your members ship to that If they went to search you,they would be death in no time.

You were now far far away from your ship and millions of thoughts where running in your mind.Arthur headed you to a cabin,he opened the door,his cabin...wait a minute!?His cabin?!

"You're kind of jocking right?I'm not gonna stay with you..here"you said little embarassed by the fact that you were forced to share a cabin with him.Befor you could say another thing he had pinned your wrists with one of his hands on the wall in a death grip.

"W-What are you doing?!"you demaned,annoyed with yourself that you showed such weakness towards him.When you saw his face you almost fanited.You saw so manny faces on this seas on pirates,but his expression held so many emotions...wrong emotions that you couldn't discribe.His eyes were pircing your soul,like he could see underneat your clothes...and his sadistic grin...it was beyond insane and sick.

"Playing a little game called master&slave~..."he purred in your ear"...and i guess you already know who's the master here?~" he said as he licked your earlobe.

...but then someone drops you at the bottom."


*cough*Since I finished the Pirate Iggy oneshot,I wanted to make a little longer story with Pirate!England and I made the Reader a pirate to..just for the more funX3

I know the grammer sucks to no end-_- and the fighting part is fail to,but I suck at fighting parts so forgive meXD

The next part is gonna be more....interesting and*cough*excitable.
Pirate!England is just so much fun to write and got many ideas for this story.

I got this idea when I was in German class today.I got bored out of my mind,looked out the window and thought of some Iggy stuffs:iconiggybrowsplz:

Hetalia(c)Hidekaz Himaruya
I got the title this morning when i was dressing the song Rich Girl by Gwen Stefani was up and my first thought was....ENGLAND!!!!>w<:squee:Seriously,while listening to the song I swear I was feeling like England hips moved on mine:blush:
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Caramels, dripping not-so-subtle love letters and your
Underwear is lacy sweetness under my roaming fingers
Nothing under all of this can
Need such bashful and intense
Interest as the kind I'm taking in your
Legs, long and lovely
In those thigh high purple
Never been worn boots that I
Got for you.. they look so good
Under your sexy little
Skirts.
Don't you love acrostics?
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