Writing Notes - Killing characters
Many writers state that they are very connected to their characters. This is not surprising, for writers we build worlds, we create people and animals and imbue them with a form of life. We let them live in our heads and think on them often.
Often I have day-dreamed into my written world, sat on a log watching my characters around the campfire swapping stories. I've seen them laughing, passing around skins of bad wine and spiced meats. I've seen them sink into sorrow at those they have lost, those they couldn't save. Whether any of this gets written is a different matter because it is all designed for me to learn more about my characters, so see them react.
We begin to know them intimately, their moods and habits and loves and fears. We can read their facial ticks and subtle body poses. So why wouldn't we become connected?
When you write stories especially long ones were you have a larger amount of time to learn about your characters and allow them to develop they do become something i
Writers' Notes - Battles and WarsWriters' Notes - Battles and Wars4 years ago in Writing More Like This
While I have written a tutorial on fight scenes, I felt that it would be prudent to write one regarding wars and battles. After all a war or a battle is not just about how to fight.
When you are writing a war or battle first make sure you plan where it's going to take place. Land can be tricky, and it changes during a battle.
Image two giant armies amassing on a huge field. Infantry and cavalry alike, all decked in battle gear and heavy armour.
The pound of thousands of feet, man and horses alike. How do you think the ground will look? Grass torn and flattened, turned to mud especially if the weather turns and it begins to rain or sleet. Are there hills or mountains? Has one army taken a higher ground, dug a moat or added spikes of wood to protect their area?
Is there forests around them, have the trees been burned by one army to keep the other from using the wooded area as shelter? Has an army begun to p
Writer Notes- Plot DevelopmentWriter Notes- Plot Development4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Whether you are writing a novel or a short story it is best to have your MAIN PLOT before you get too much written down. The Main Plot is the singular thread that runs through the novel/story. You may have character ideas or scene ideas but eventually you need to think about a plot. Do this sooner rather than later.
The best way to do this is to list your main characters and then decide what are their individual main plots. Are they all on the same quest with the same ideas / goals or do some of them have their own goals?
To help show this, here's an example:
Eric To become knighted and serve his king
Vivian To destroy her former master before he can poison the kingdom
Luke To find his brother
Taldor The largest city
Maybe from this list you decide Vivian is the MAIN character and her story line is the driving force however each of the other three have story lines that need to be tol
Writers Notes - DialogueWriters Notes - Dialogue4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Dialogue is the speech between characters. It is when the narrator (you) stops telling the story and the characters speak instead.
Here's some pointers regarding dialogue writing:
Never write dialogue like real-life speech. Why? Because if you listen to real-life speech it is littered with umms and ahhs and errs. Anyone who has ever sat through a meeting or an assembly listening to someone droning on umming and ahhing will know just how frustrating it is. The last thing you want is to inflict that on your reader.
Real life also has moments where you completely forget what you're saying or get side tracked and run off on a tangent or get interrupted. Now all these things can be added to dialogue but in small amounts. We all know someone in life who constantly interrupts us when we talk, they can't wait for your part of the conversation to end so they talk over you. Fine, have a char
How Not to write a Mary SueHow Not to write a Mary Sue3 years ago in Writing More Like This
How Not To Write A Mary Sue
So, what is a Mary Sue? It is used as a form of criticism in literature and refers to an idealised and somewhat "perfect" character that appears to have no flaws or if they do they are so limited that all the "perfect" characteristics overwhelm them making the character "flat." Mary sue often refers to a young female protagonist and male "Mary Sues" are often called "Larry Stu".
From my experience most Mary Sues are written in non-published works usually by young writers especially in fan-fiction. However there are a few Mary Sue writers who are actually published (sadly). It shows a deep lacking to create perfect characters unless it's done for satirical purposes.
So why should you avoid writing Mary Sues? Simple, perfect is boring!
We don't like perfect, we don't want perfect! Ask anyone in a relationship to list the positives traits, charms and idiosyncrasies of their partner and I guarantee at least one will be something that is weird, annoying, bizarre
Writers Notes - ResearchWriters Notes - Research4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Firstly, my rule any writer worth their salt who WANTS to be published someday has a LARGE collection of reference books in their home or knows intricately the layout of the reference section in their local library.
If you want to be a professional writer, a published writer then you can't skimp on the research. So, unless you were born with a mass of knowledge on hundreds of subjects then you will need to read up on them. Not to mention things change especially in some subjects where improvements and developments replace original knowledge: for example Medicine, police procedures etc.
Do not think your readers are stupid. They are your second biggest critic (after yourself) and even loyal fans will be ready to point out flaws. Try and get passed any anger or frustration you feel if people point out your flaws. Take it as a positive step that they are trying to move your work forward (sometimes).
I read a novel once that described
Writers' Notes - Fight ScenesWriters' Notes - Fight Scenes4 years ago in Writing More Like This
I have read enough books to find that fighting scenes can be difficult to write. Some of the novels I have read have had painful fighting scenes so this tutorial is an amalgamation of my thoughts on the best ways to do it.
First, let's break this down into aspects to think about:
Before writing fight scenes think about the characters involved. What are their skills, what are their ideas of fighting? Why are they doing so? Is it a sense of survival? Is it to show honour like a duel?
For example -
Does a peaceful man watch his brothers murdered in a slaughter by the king's men. Does he, in a rage, grab a fallen sword and defend the last of them. He holds no skill but the sheer fury at watching his peaceful world be shattered. Afterwards does he vow revenge and ride for the king's castle or retreat to the mountains to get over what he di
Character Tips 5 - DreamsCharacter Creation Dreams and FearsCharacter Tips 5 - Dreams4 years ago in Other More Like This
Absolutely everybody has their dreams for the future and there isn't anybody alive who isn't afraid of something. Giving your character both dreams and fears will help to flesh out your character a little bit.
You probably have dreams for your future, so why shouldn't your character? They don't have to be huge, but it has to be possible to work towards them. Their dream could be to get the job they've always wanted. It could be to recover from an illness that they've had for a long time, or it could be as simple as to just find where they belong.
Whatever the goal is, there has to be something getting in the way. For example, my dream is to become a professional author, but I'm not comfortable showing what I've written to other people. It's the same for your character, achieving a dream shouldn't be so easy.
Of course, no one has just one goal in life, but they will always have one major one. That would be the one you woul
Character Tips 2 - PersonalityCharacter Creation History and PersonalityCharacter Tips 2 - Personality4 years ago in Other More Like This
So, you have the body of your character, but it's only the body. It has no life or personality yet. This will hopefully help to give it one.
Creating a history is not often fun or easy, but what has happened in your character's past will affect their personality. Of course, like with everything else, there are traps that you can fall into. Some things are horribly overused, it's not illegal to use them, but just keep in mind that they are really common. Whatever you do, don't have an overly sad past, and I don't mean that they can't be orphans, or be abused by a parent or partner, because it does happen in real life (sadly). Just don't have every single thing happen to them.
Example: "Growing up, Amy was never happy. She had been orphaned at the age of 5 in a car crash. She was soon adopted by a family who seemed nice at first but then they started to abuse her. She would cry herself to sleep every night bec
Character Tips 3 - ClothingCharacter Creation ClothingCharacter Tips 3 - Clothing4 years ago in Other More Like This
So, your character has a body, a life and a personality. The thing is, they're still naked! Well, this should solve their problem.
Before we decide on their clothes, we need to figure out what they actually do for a living. This is important because, apart from their personality, this will decide the type of clothing your character will wear. For example, a princess will wear a lot of fine dresses and have a lot of jewellery whereas a peasant will have patched up clothes and little to no jewellery. A business man will wear a suit to work whereas a person working on a construction site will wear jeans, steel toed boots, a shirt, a high vis. vest and a hard hat.
Basically, position in society and career will determine what your character usually wears.
How Personality Fits In
Appearance is influenced by your personality, not the other way around. For example, an outgoing person will more likely reveal more skin than a shy per
Writers' Notes - Some BasicsWriters' Notes - Some Basics4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Here are just some basic thoughts for those who wish to be writers.
Novelists can and do break the rules in grammar, however this should not be done in a blasé manner. There is a difference between breaking rules for artistic value and being ignorant of those rules in the first place.
It's a common misconception that if you send in a badly written story that's really good plot/character wise that a publisher will accept it and have the Editor sort out the grammar / spelling. What is more likely, is it will be sent back to you, possibly not even fully read.
The reason for this is that publishers don't want to be doing all the work. You have to show you have a grasp of English and spelling/grammar is important (even if boring). We might all be a little less careful when writing our emails, letters, texts or even tutorials (I blame that on using ubuntu OS and its word processing software has predict
Story Writing - Tips and TricksStory Writing Tips and TricksStory Writing - Tips and Tricks3 years ago in Other More Like This
So, you're either writing or want to write a story. Here is a list of tips and tricks that will help you on your way to achieving your goal.
1. Write Compelling Characters
Whether your character is human or not, your audience will want to read about a hero/heroine who acts like a real person. This means giving them a well rounded personality with a fairly equal amount of strengths and flaws. Having these flaws means that they have room to grow, or they could have a tragic flaw that becomes their downfall.
Example Tragic Flaw: John Proctor from The Crucible by Arthur Miller. He is a compelling character with a tragic flaw, he has too much pride. In the end it leads to his death.
Make sure your character fits the setting too. If you are writing a story in a historical realistic setting, let's say 15th century Japan, your character should look Japanese. Research the fashion, the politics, the names and the mann
Writers Notes - Writers BlockWriters Notes - Writers Block4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Writers Block is one of the worst feelings a writer can experience. Even the best writers will suffer it at some point or another. Point in fact that I myself am suffering writers block in my novel at this moment.
Some writers use it as an excuse to give up and stop writing completely. This happens more when the writers block lasts for a considerable period. It does not just have to be over days, I have known it to be over weeks and even over two months before now.
Writers block can be for many reasons. Often it can be when you are struggling with a key part of your writing / plot and are not making any headway. If this continues and affects the flow of your writing you can find yourself feeling "stunted."
Other writers blocks can be because you have overstretched yourself. Maybe you have been taking too much on or pushing yourself too hard. This is often when the hobby and joy of writing
The Wasteland AKA the MIDDLEThe Wasteland AKA the MIDDLE5 years ago in Writing More Like This
The Trackless Wasteland known as: The MIDDLE
The middle (of a story) KILLS me. I freeze when I have to decide which way things are going to go, and how, and that happens during the middle for me.
Middle, middle, middle... It's the Slough of Despond!
The Middle is where I usually fizzle out.
The middle is DANGEROUS territory.
Why? Because the Middle of a story is where you have a million-and-one options, a million-and-one directions to choose from, and a million-and-one ways to really show off your writing skills.
The Middle is also, where you have a million-and-one opportunities to really screw up your story for good. Opportunities that will send you spiraling into ever tightening circles that eventually jam you into a corner you can't get out of. In short: get you Lost in your own story.
You KNOW yo
How to Introduce a CharacterThe classical Movie Introduction Sometimes, you get a hero. Not over time, but right at the start this is your hero. He's confident, he's suave, and he always packs his shaving cream. Somehow he always manages to get that beard just right, despite the fact that you've never seen him trim. Everything about him is admirable, and you just wanna follow him like a little puppy dog because that's how AWESOME he is.How to Introduce a Character4 years ago in Writing More Like This
it might work, but you still shouldn't do it. It's one thing for movies, where you can simply follow someone's action across the screens. In books, you want the closeness that only seeing the character fall on their face time times just to get it right once will bring.
The stumbling introduction - sometimes, your character stumbles into the wrong thing at the wrong time. Or the right thing at the right time, perhaps, but if you want a good story you should probably make sure it ends up worse for them than it would have otherwise.
Oh, sure, things
HOW do you make THE END?HOW do you make THE END?5 years ago in Writing More Like This
"When will you make an end?"
- The Pope on the painting of the Sistine Chapel
"When I'm finished."
Okay, so you got this GREAT Idea for a story!
- This Great Idea...that births chapter after chaper...
- This Great Idea... that you can't seem to finish. (WTF?)
So what do you do now?
HOW do you make an End?
Fairytales and Myths were my foundational reading, so they became my base model for how a story should finish -- by ending where you began with a solution.
This doesn't mean ending a story in the location it started, or that full irrevocable transformations don't happen, but that the story ties the knot to the Emotional or Karmic place they began. -- The lost find their way, the wicked are punished, the weak become strong, monsters are faced, emotional hang-ups are dealt with, and problems are solved. What is begun - finishes.
-- Stories aren't just about characters Doing stuff, it's about cha
The Art of VILLAINYThe Art of VILLAINY5 years ago in Writing More Like This
The Art of VILLAINY ~ Making Realistic Villains for your Fiction ~
"People will do far more to Avoid Pain than they will to Seek Pleasure."
-- CIA Profiler Gavin DeBecker on Human Nature
When I craft a villain, I go out of my way to make darned sure that my fictional villains are as realistic as the villains we face in real life. I begin by giving them ordinary human Issues.
Within every villain (fictional and non-fictional) there's a human issue at core that drives them to BE villains in the first place. Even mass murderers have reasons (however twisted) for doing what they do.
NO villainous action is RANDOM.
The victim may be randomly chosen, but the action -- no matter how twisted -- always has a reason behind it. That reason is ALWAYS driven by a very human issue triggered by an unfulfilled and essential human need.
Key Human Issues:
* Desire for Connection
10 Second Tip - Foreshadowing10 Second Tip - Foreshadowing4 years ago in Writing More Like This
I hear the term 'foreshadowing' a lot. That's when you hint at stuff to come, right? So yeah, but how do I DO it?
Foreshadowing is when the opening scene of a story is a kind of nutshell prophecy for the whole story.
* In a Horror, this is when the originating Bad Thing happens.
* In a Mystery or Crime story, it's when the first victim is slain, and/or object (McGuffin) goes missing.
* In a Romance this is where the main character meets their soon-to-be lover for a fleeting but memorable moment.
* In a Sci-fi, this is where the ruling Theory is presented.
* In a Gothic, this is where the main character transforms into a monster for the first time.
This also reveals the Premise, or ruling argument that the story is trying to illustrate; what the story is trying to Prove.
The results of Revenge
The path of Ambition
The reality of Love
The sacrifices one mak
Writing Tips - Getting StartedWriting Tips - Getting Started5 years ago in Writing More Like This
You want to write a story. Great! But the problem is that you're stuck before you've ever even managed to get the first word down on the page. You're just being taunted by the white page (or screen, as the case may be) in front of you.
If you haven't already, you may want to look into getting your thoughts organised. Figure out what you're going to write about, before trying to write anything. This may mean anything from making a few notes on a page to writing down every single thing that pops into your head, whether or not it's immediately relevant (my preferred method). With a more general (or even a very concrete) idea of where your story is going to go, the words should hopefully come a little more easily.
If that fails to work, try putting on some music. I tend to find that just putting on any old music will actually be counter-productive. Instead, tr