Guide to SymbolismI have searched the wonder that happens to be the internet to provide you with his guide to symbolism.Guide to Symbolism5 years ago in Writing More Like This
The search for someone or something that will restore rightness to the hero's world that involves hardships, monsters, or riddles (literal or figurative in nature like all of these)
The hero must perform a deed beyond the norm.
The Initiation or Transformation
The hero undergoes a hazing to pass from ignorance and immaturity to social and spiritual adulthood. It usually occurs in three stage: separation, transformation, and return and thusly may include the fall and death/rebirth
In search of information, the hero passes into a real or figurative hell from which he may emerge after he discovers the blackest truths of himself
The hero falls to a lower level from a comparative heaven after a loss of innocence and happiness because of a transgression, a wrong.
Death and Rebirth
Usually a metaphorical death,
Guide to Better DialogueWriting dialogue -- realistic dialogue, anyway -- does not come easily to everyone. Done well, dialogue advances the story and fleshes out the characters while providing a break from straight exposition. However, just as realistic dialogue is one of the most powerful tools at a writer's disposal, nothing pulls the reader out of a story faster than bad dialogue. It takes time to develop a good ear, but noting these simple rules and obvious pitfalls can make a huge difference.Guide to Better Dialogue5 years ago in Writing More Like This
1. Listen to How People Talk.
Having a sense of natural speech patterns is essential to good dialogue. Start to pay attention to the expressions that people use and the music of everyday conversation. This exercise asks you to do this more formally, but generally speaking it's helpful to develop your ear by paying attention to the way people talk.
2. Not Exactly like Real Speech.
But dialogue should read like real speech. How do you accomplish that? Alfred Hitchcock said that a good story was "life, w
Guide to Char. Archetypes Pt2Character Archetypes part 2Guide to Char. Archetypes Pt25 years ago in Writing More Like This
I have searched the wondrous load of random crap that is the internet to give you this list of hero archetypes. I tried to give examples and decent definitions of each archetype.
This hero is the quintessential alpha hero. He might have been born to lead, or perhaps he conquered his way to the top, but either way, he's tough, decisive, goal-oriented. That means he is also a bit overbearing and inflexible.
This man tends to be at the top of his career field maybe the CEO of a major corporation, or a prince. If he's not already number one, it's only a matter of time.
Some examples of Chiefs:
John Wayne in most of his movies
Captain Kirk of Star Trek
Marlon Brando in The Godfather
If this man were trapped in a basement with an unconscious heroine and a bomb ticking, his first reaction would be anger, which he would, of course want to take out on someone else. He can never admit he's made a mistake, and since h
Guide to Char. Archetypes Pt3The Perfect Woman. How much time do we spend striving to be that elusive creature? You know the woman, or at least imagine you do. She is brilliant in the boardroom, passionate in the bedroom, and puts Martha Stewart to shame when entertaining.Guide to Char. Archetypes Pt35 years ago in Writing More Like This
She's the star of all our favorite romances, because she's the woman we all want to be.
Hmm. Wait a sec. I don't want to be like that. And that wasn't the lady who accepted the proposal of the dashing hero in the Regency I just put down. In fact, I am not sure I have ever read a romance in which the heroine was so darned wonderful that all she had to do to find happiness everlasting was straighten out that silly hero of hers.
No. In all the romances I have seen, the heroine has a bit of emotional baggage to overcome. And she has a few real life obstacles in her path. She has to work to get the brass ring in life, and I like to watch her do it. That's the story!
So, if our romances don't star Patti Perfect, who does traipse across the pages?
Guide to Char. Archetypes Pt1Guide to Character Archetypes Part 1Guide to Char. Archetypes Pt15 years ago in Writing More Like This
I made a list of basic character archetypes. There are plenty more, and you can scour the internet looking for them. But I wrote the most common, and some odd ones you've probably never thought of.
The protagonist on a literal or figurative journey often from childhood to adulthood, innocence to experience.
The antagonist or character blocking the hero's path.
The hero's inner evil, the dark side of his psyche that makes success difficult or impossible unless accepted.
Mother and Father
Yup, the parental units are near and dear to our hearts and especially our minds because of their nurturing or lack thereof.
The Wise Old Man
A mentor, a teacher, a counselor
The Friendly Beast
This shows that nature is pro-hero.
The bad, bad person who tempts the hero
A person (or animal) whose death relieves others of a sin or wrong
A character b
GuidetoCharacterArchtypes pt 4I decided to write a little guide on the many, and I mean many, of the villain or antagonist archetypes. I think I covered all of them.GuidetoCharacterArchtypes pt 45 years ago in Writing More Like This
The TYRANT: the bullying despot, he wants power at any price. He ruthlessly conquers all he surveys, crushing his enemies beneath his feet. People are but pawns to him, and he holds all the power pieces. Hesitate before getting in this man's way he'll think nothing of destroying you.
The BASTARD: the dispossessed son, he burns with resentment. He can't have what he wants, so he lashes out to hurt those around him. His deeds are often for effect he wants to provoke action in others. He proudly announces his rebellious dealings. Don't be fooled by his boyish demeanor he's a bundle of hate.
The DEVIL: the charming fiend, he gives people what he thinks they deserve. Charisma allows him to lure his victims to their own destruction. His ability to discover the moral weaknesses in others serves him well. Close your ea
Using Elements for CharactersUse the four elements and think about what personality traits would be associated with each element. Assign an element to a character. You do not have to use all the personality traits associated with an element, but you should make sure you have a nice balance of good and bad traits. Good traits make the character likable, while bad traits (or character flaws) make them relatable.Using Elements for Characters5 years ago in Writing More Like This
For more unique characters, try combining elements, like water + earth = mud, and fire + water = steam. If any traits clash or cancel out each other, remove one of them. I wouldn't recommend you combine more than two elements, because the character might become unbalanced.
- easily annoyed
- anti social
Summary: Earth is a sturdy and strong element, commonly ass
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
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 Character5 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
Ultimate Story ProfileGeneral Info:Ultimate Story Profile5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Genre (epic, fantasy, historical, romantic, action, adventure, comedy, horror, drama, etc):
Theme (meaning or dominant idea behind the story):
Synopsis (the story summed up into one or two sentences, with or without ending):
General Story Overview:
The Three Acts:
Act 1 (orientation and first problem):
Act 2 (struggling to solve problem):
Act 3 (climax and ending):
The Hero's Journey (skip this if not familiar with hero's journey):
The Ordinary World:
The Call to Adventure:
Refusal of the Call (for the reluctant hero):
Mentor (the wise old man or woman):
Crossing the First Threshold:
Tests, Allies and Enemies:
Approach to the Inmost Cave:
The Road Back:
HowTo Write a Good Fight SceneWriting action is one of the hardest things for a writer, and writing the pinicle of action - fight scenes - is obviously virtually the hardest. Everybody loves a good bloody fist fight, lots of gore and punching and general violence. But acheiving the dream of creating the perfect fight scene is a lot more difficult than meets the eye.HowTo Write a Good Fight Scene5 years ago in Writing More Like This
There isn't going to be much talking going on here. You can shove in a few "Ow"'s and "Ugh"'s here and there, but do not have your characters talking all throughout. It's not going to be very exciting if you characters are having a friendly little chat whilst trying to maul each other.
You can, however, add a couple little threats now and again. For example;
"I'm going to kill you, you know..." I muttered dryly, holding Ian in a tight headlock. I felt his muscles tense beneith my arms.
"Are you hell," he growled, thrusting his elbow back into my ribs. I grunted and loosened my grip...
But you have to be careful with what you say -
I Am An Indigo ChildI was told that I was special at a young age.I Am An Indigo Child5 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
Before I could remember, I was taken to a metaphysical show by my family. One of the people read my horoscope, I had my first numerology reading, my family was told I was an "old soul". My grandmother smiled and nodded. She knew. They said I was calling for a brother. That brother would be my worst enemy and my closest friend.
Years after that fateful day, I began to signs of how special I was. I had many "friends" and no one but me knew about them. I could see monsters. They scared me and they wouldn't go away, even when dad bought me a nightlight. I would scar my mother. I use to tell my mother who would call or come over with amazing accuracy minutes before they would. My best friend was my faithful dog, the closest thing to a wolf I would ever get to see.
I was an artist. I could mold words into poems and stories, my crayons and coloring books changed into sketchbooks and various mediums. I am a borderline genius! So are my brothers, bu
INTERNAL CONFLICTINTERNAL CONFLICT5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Note: this is how the professional authors do it. That doesn't mean YOU have to. As with all advice, take what you can use and throw out the rest.
His lips drifted across hers in a warm caress. His hand pressed at waist, the heat of his palm warming her flesh through her corset underlying the deep blood silk gown. His fingers drifted upward, toward her breast.
Desire pulsed within her core, in time with her heart. She wanted to let him tear the red silk from her body, and bury himself in her flesh, but set her palm over his to stop him just below her breast. He was a vampire and she, a mere mortal. The fear in her soul told her to stop, and yet her body begged for his mouth on her flesh. I am overcome, overcome by a desire I know only he can satisfy... He fired her blood more than any other man.
She turned away from his kiss. "Please, I can't."
His gaze narrowed, then he smiled. "
Synonyms for SaidAccusedSynonyms for Said4 years ago in Writing More Like This
A True WitchThe witch greets the dayA True Witch6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
A candle is lit
With peace and gratitude
In meditation she sits
She plans the day
By the phases of the sacred moon
She sweeps out the old
To make room for the new
She sweetens the air
With incense and oils
She cares for her herbs
And waters the soil
Because she listens
She is given answers
There are things she knows
When she works her magick
The people she loves
In her heart she holds true
She only sees the right
In all that they do
The seasonal Sabbats
Are festive and fun
A feast of celebration
To honor the sun
In the Esbat circle
She draws down the sacred moon
At the midnight hour
She kisses her hand to the moon
And is granted a wish
When the sun sets low
And the witch ends her day
In her bath of salt
She washes away
All that is not right in the world
And what she wants to change
Another candle is lit and only gratitude remains
She rest her head on her pillow
And listens to the spirits all around
Falls into blissful sleep
In the arms the Mother and Father
The Epic Journey ChecklistI always love those epic stories where we follow a group of characters, travelling around a world (either real or imaginary). Where these characters encounter new trials in a different country/land/location every episode/chapter we tune in. This is a little checklist I made for making "journey" or "travelling" stories.The Epic Journey Checklist5 years ago in Writing More Like This
1. A hero We need a primary character to tell the story through. This character does not have to be "the hero" of the story, but they should play a significant part in the journey.
2. A supporting cast Allies, mentors, a leader (of course, if the hero isn't the leader) and people with special skills that will be of value to the leader. These characters not only support the story and provide alternative points of view, but they can also provide a shoulder for the hero to lean on.
3. A backstory Characters should have their own history and unique traits that you find out over the story as you get to know them.
4. A mode of trans
Monster GuideMonster GuideMonster Guide6 years ago in Writing More Like This
That's right, another guide. I've been meaning to do it, for a while, and dang it all, I'm going to!
The Classic Monster - As you've probably learned by now, there is almost always a classic. This one doesn't have to be good or bad, really, they just have to be hungry - for you. Or violent. Or anything else that will lead them to try to kill your main characters. Like all classics, they tend to be utterly flat, and of little interest - unless you invented the species, in which case they might have an awesome feature or too. You don't need to avoid this one, though! I wouldn't go around giving them major parts, mind you, but not every random monster that attacks your characters has to have a big long story. Sometimes they just want food, or the were artificially created to be excessively aggressive, or you stumbled across its nest and now it's territorial. As important as it is to realize depth is important, it's also necessary to remember that sometimes
Choosing a Companion: A GuideChoosing a CompanionChoosing a Companion: A Guide5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Alright, you've got your hero, your villain, your damsel maybe even a style of transformation and a monster too. Wanna know what comes next? No idea, yet! You should have figured out your companion aaaaaaages ago.
There's very little that's more important than a good companion. Whether it's to lend support or kick them down, no hero can do it alone. Even if they really wish they could.
The Loyal Companion: Most, though not all, companions fall into this overhead. Otherwise, they'd stab them in the back and run the moment they could. (See further down for that.)
This is basically the companion that stands by the hero's side through thick and thin, a Sam for a Frodo. Whether this is because of a deep friendship, a sense of honor, or a secret relationship between the characters is all up to you and your audience's imagination. Frankly, the reason matters less than the character themselves - this is the one you don't wanna mess with. When the Loyal Companion is hurt, t
Ultimate Scene ProfileI decided to do another one. Use this profile to flesh out the scenes you want to include in your story.Ultimate Scene Profile5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Basic scene details (what characters are doing, what happens, etc):
What purpose does this scene serve to the story as a whole? (if a scene has no purpose and is just in there because you like it, it's a darling, and we must kill our darlings):
How does this scene affect the overall plot of the story? (if you've already explained this, no need to repeat yourself):
What is the main conflict in this scene (the characters' problems, conflict between or within the characters):
NOTE: This section requires other readings. If you don't have knowledge of the hero's journey or the three act structure (two popular plot structuring devices used in countless films), then ignore this part.
At what stage of the hero's journey does this scene take place? How does it fit into this stage?:
In which act of the story does this
Punchlines and Pay-OffsPunchlines and Pay-Offs6 years ago in Writing More Like This
Set-Up and Punchline: Using Narrative to Tell a Joke
"Three blokes go into a pub. Something happens, and the outcome's hilarious!"
-- Bill Bailey
That's the basic recipe for any joke, isn't it? Set the scene, add a verb or two, and everyone laughs. But there's a problem with jokes, and it goes something rather like this:
"Three blokes go into a pub, and the whole scene unfolds into a tedious inevitability." -- Bill Bailey (again)
The formula to telling a joke is a bit more complex than just the basic recipe. The recipe is what you need to tell the joke; milk, eggs, flour, shortening, baking powder, saffron. But if you just look at the recipe, you don't really know what's going to happen. Are we baking a cake? Biscuits? Some sort of rock-hard bread that'll keep in the pantry for two million years? We don't know!
Telling a joke is the same thing. Just having the set up, verbs, and payoff without knowing how much of each, or if you should use the verbal equivalent to