SkeletonAre you here?
It is autumn. A leaf falls off a skeletal tree and drifts towards the cracked cement. Its edges are ragged and curled inwards. It touches the ground softly, and stills.
The street is desolate, and you are alone, save a car built in the '70s and the trees lining the streets with their branches naked and trunks exposed. And in the sky, there is only the infinite grey of looming cloud. It hasn't rained in thirteen weeks.
You shove your hands in your pockets and amble along the cracked path, eyes at your feet and ears acute. On the ground, you find a lone cockroach scuttling along the path, but it doesn't bother you. You find brown leaves, nothing more than sawdust, and broken twigs. The masses of dead leaves clog the dry stormpipe, as does a cumulative clutter of litter: aluminium cans, MacDonald's packaging, pieces of plastic and forgotten pocket accessories.
You wish it would rain. The air is humid and you haven't slept for weeks. You were supposed to attend a party yester
How To 'Flesh Out' an OCHow To 'Flesh Out' an OC4 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
The aggregate of features and traits that form the
individual nature of some person or thing.
In this tutorial I will guide you through a way to 'flesh out' an Original Character (Also known as an OC). Before we begin, let's go through the basics.
A character is quite simply one who possesses qualities that define them from someone else. Every character is original and unique. A character can not only be human, but an animal, an alien, or anything that the imagination can come up with.
However, characters are often difficult to create, because to put it bluntly, you are in a sense creating a new being. This being needs the same kinds of traits and characteristics you possess, but can't be your own. They have to be original. In this case, many young writers and artists forget how hard it is to make a character and forget the complex details that enhance a character.
Fleshing out is a term used commonly in developing characters. It means to add additional det
Writing Real, Original OCsHi. I'm Alexi. Before we get started, there's some things we need to get out of the way.Writing Real, Original OCs4 years ago in Personal More Like This
My advice is not gold. It's probably not even silver. It's not law. It's just advice. But I've been writing for years, and I've been working on this for a few days now, so It'd be pretty nice if you listened to me.
Writing believable characters starts off pretty difficult. The first characters you write will probably be shallow, and/or idealized versions of
yourself. Your first villain is probably 'just evil because he's evil'.
Your characters fall into a number of stereotypes, and become labeled by them.
Maybe you want to avoid Mary Sues so you make your characters plain.
Maybe you write extrasuperfabulous people because you want your characters to be liked.
DON'T WORRY. THIS IS PERFECTLY NORMAL. EVERYBODY STARTS OUT LIKE THIS.
Throw this mindset out the window, because:
There is one thing that every main character needs to be.
They don't need to be
5 Steps to Organize Your NovelWhat You'll Need:5 Steps to Organize Your Novel4 years ago in Writing More Like This
A basic story idea
Printer (preferably laser) with plenty of paper
Three Ring Binders (2) with separating tabs
Build Your World and Characters
For most writers, this comes naturally. If you're having some issues, there are plenty of tutorials, guides, aids and groups available for assistance. For the purpose of this guide, you should have your world built and at the very least your main characters devised. Having secondary characters planned will get you bonus points!
Print Character and Plot Sheets
Each character should have their own sheet (keep the backs blank, they're a grand place to keep extra notes and page references). It's not necessary that you fill out every single line of the character sheet. Fill out only what is necessary for the character/plot. Feel free to add to the sheet as your write, too. The
The Naming of CharactersFirst of all, we don't need this surface-value, wishy-washy crap. I'll show you what I mean, so here's a form I used to give out when accepting OCs for stories a long time ago (ah, back in the days. I truly forgot how fun writing without bounds used to be--you know, writing for your own satisfaction with things like outrageous Sues, blatant cliches, and genres that I have worn out for a year or two. I still do it sometimes, but I can't bring myself to get too heavily into the story because I know it would be really bad to anyone else. I DO miss writing about fantasy journeys, though, but I really wore that out when I was younger, so right now I'm getting into fantasy-without-the-magic. Technically, historical fiction for my own world).The Naming of Characters4 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
Anyway, carry on.
Remember Cedric - o4Knock.Remember Cedric - o44 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
"Go away," I moaned scornfully, dragging my feet off the couch and shuffling to the door. I wrenched it open.
"Hey Ringmaster!" Cedric grinned.
"Sorry, I was under the impression you had a life," I replied bitterly.
"Are you always this bitter in the morning?" Cedric asked, raising an eyebrow.
My eyes widened, "Cedric, do you know what time it is?!" I spluttered.
"Seven-thirty? Are you calling that early?"
"My wake-up time should be twelve in the middle of the day, if it shows you just how early it is for me," I grumbled, turning back to fall on the couch again.
Cedric followed me in, "You have terrible sleeping patterns."
"Because usually I konk out at three from alcohol? Yes, I suppose so."
"More alcohol last night?" Cedric frowned.
"Not last night," I muttered darkly.
Then Cedric smirked and chuckled, "Oh, I almost forgot! So did you get lucky with those girls? Looked like they all wanted a bit of you."
I looked away and didn't answer, choosing to ignore him.
Remember Cedric - o1Find her house. Find her. Wait. Watch him die. Leave.Remember Cedric - o14 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
That was the plan for the day. If it wasn't for her, I wouldn't be in France. Her, Alyss L'moure, a young French maid who was going to die in another six years. It wasn't a pretty outlook for the girl, and I could tell from the start she would be a difficult one.
I have watched her all my life. All the way from when she could hardly walk. I watched as she grew into her elegant build. I watched her once peaceful life corroding away as her father left her for another woman, leaving her and her mother in complete poverty. Alyss started her job at only nine. Her boss was a perverted bastard, in my opinion. As Alyss entered her teenage years (now being fifteen) he took more of a liking to her. He favoured her. And although his attempts to win her heart with dressing her in the most expensive dresses and feeding her the most expensive food, it would all go to waste in the end. He kills her anyway.
Alyss never would have suspect
Nobody Loves My Character!Nobody Loves My Character!3 years ago in Writing More Like This
On making characters lovable, in your story and online
Brought to you by Super Editor
Disclaimer: This is a troubleshooting guide, and it doesn't necessarily cover every possible solution. It's based on my own experience, and not every idea may fit every character or work. Please use your common sense and personal taste when applying this information. Thanks for reading!
It's every writer's nightmare: your characters, after all the things you've put them through and all the months or years they've inhabited your head, have been eagerly displayed to the public and received an unenthusiastic response. Your audience has not been enchanted. They do not drool, fall hopelessly in love, or draw fan art in droves. They don't even pick favorite characters or whine for more information! You've failed. Nobody understands your characters. Nobody understands you.
...Wait a second. Try again?
Deviants who regularly post OC stories and art are lucky: their relationship with their audien
Cedric, It Talks - 1 of 2When one slept, they slept in peace. But I suppose that was for someone who owned a bed. For one who did not (myself), and was not outgoing (myself), and was friends with a very social and clingy asshole, sleep was not peaceful.Cedric, It Talks - 1 of 24 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Ring, you drunk shit! Get up and stop moaning!" he hit me over the head.
I groaned in annoyance, "Fuck off," I mumbled darkly.
"It's nearly midday! You've been asleep for hours!" Cedric protested.
Sighing, I sat up, a feat that took most of the energy in me. I glared at him, "You do realise I don't care how long I'm asleep for?"
"Only because you can't ever remember how long you're asleep since you're always drunk!"
"That's not fair!" I complained, "I'm not always drunk!" I sighed, then stood up, tucking in my creased shirt into my pants, "Where's my vest?" I asked to no one in particular, searching for the rest of my clothes.
Cedric always found it crazy that I could live like I could, especially the part where hygiene came in. Same clothes for a week?
Act 1 - chpt. 1In my opinion, I believe that a story can begin anywhere you like. Begin in the middle if you want, but you still will work out the start and finish at an end. Starting at an end however is more difficult, because you have to tell the story backwards without giving out too many spoilers on what is going to happen in the end.Act 1 - chpt. 14 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I decided to begin about a quarter of the way through. Reason for this is because I don't know the beginning. There never was one, it was always a 'getting to the middle'. Don't you hate that? But then again, I could just admit I would be asking personal questions that are rude to ask simply to know the beginning.
So here is a quarter of the way through, my type of beginning.
Well, there was this corridor. The walls were like the ones of a classic circus tent. There was a slit between the walls. This was where I was, watching all the oblivious audience members give in their tickets and sit down into the circus arena. Of course, it was not a circus. It was just a fa
Beating the BlockBeating the Block3 years ago in Writing More Like This
brought to you by Super Editor
Please read this list slowly and carefully, considering not only the individual prompt but ways to bend it. You'll get much more out of it. (Thinking about specific characters and/or listening to your book's theme music while you read may help.)
This list is designed mainly to give ideas for characterization-related scenes. If your issue is more along the lines of "I don't know where I'm going," then this may not be as helpful. While you can read this anyway, meditation and logic are usually the things that work best.
If this gives you an idea, write it down! It's a long list, so you don't want to risk forgetting anything.
Not all of these thoughts and ideas will apply to your story, but perhaps one can give you an idea! I encourage you to modify the ideas below to better fit your characters' unique situation. This is just meant to get the ideas flowing. Let's get started!
Two characters are stuck under a br
Cedric, Age Twelve - 2 of 2"And every morning, all the Germans would eat for breakfast, liver."Cedric, Age Twelve - 2 of 24 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Liver?" Cedric squealed, his face screwing up in disgust.
"Yes, liver," I nodded, "For breakfast."
Cedric shook his head, disgusted, "Those Germans are sure funny. Monsieur, tell me more about Venice."
"Venice? I've told you all that I could about Venice, kid."
"But I want to know more," he protested, "About the houses on the water and the boats and the masks and the dancing."
I sighed, smiling, "How 'bout a story that happened in Venice?"
He nodded eagerly, straightening his back.
"Well, once, there was a man. He was a criminal, charged with a most horrendous crime. For twenty years, he lived his life on the run, hiding from the law. But when the law finally caught up with him, they didn't send him to his death sentence, they sent him to a jail."
"But that's not fair! Why?"
"Because, at this jail, it was worse than death, for there were no windows in this jail, and even more, when one went insid
Character design: ClothingWhen creating an OC the personality and backstory are the most important aspects. But how will s/he be recognized if her/his hair, face and whole body looks just like an other one's OC?Character design: Clothing4 years ago in Writing More Like This
The answer is simply: her/his clothing! Most people choose their clothing on their own. And not everybody buys the same shirt or shoes.
The choice of clothing is the best way to get recognized because a lot of matters are involved when you choose your new shirt. You consider age, attitude, gender, environment, hobbies, personality and profession (even when you're unemployed).
But let me show you step by step:
This aspect is quite simple:
A baby or toddler will just wear clothes like romper suits and so on. But remember that the one responable for their clothing may also consider the kid's so far shown personality and all the other things I'm going to talk about later.
When the kid gets older, it's a bit different. Parents or people in charge will still be the one buyin
To Create a CharacterAre you starting a story? Do you have an incomplete, flawed, or no character at all? It's happened to me many times and in my struggles to perfect my creations, I have learned a few things. I present you with seven easy steps with a challenge each to get you thinking.To Create a Character4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Grab a piece of paper and a pencil. Let's start
Step 1: Past
When creating a character, you must first establish a past. Even a person with amnesia has a past, they just don't remember it. Pasts are important, they show what shaped the person and why they are the way they are today.
If your character has a scar, why? If they have amnesia, why? If they have a phobia of water, why?
Remember one thing: there is always a reason.
Challenge: Write a brief story (vignette) of your character's past to familiarize yourself with the way things were.
Step 2: Appearance
You may have a certain idea, a vague idea, or no idea at all as to how your character will look. First, think of their
The Subtle STATIC TRAITThe Subtle STATIC TRAIT4 years ago in Writing More Like This
The Subtle STATIC TRAIT
Secret Weapon of the Clever Writer
The Static Trait is the small personal HABIT an individual character displays which reveals their personal Neurosis, their driving NEED, especially in stressful situations. This habitual or even ritual behavior acts as both their greatest source of trouble and the linchpin to their success. It's the individual character's "Accident Waiting to Happen".
The most obvious place to find visible Static Traits is in both Comedies and Tragedies. These stories (and movies) RELY on their characters' Static Traits to linchpin the plot.
What made Laurel and Hardy so funny, were the little neurotic habits -- the static traits -- that would appear under stressful situations. Abbot and Costello built whole routines on Bud Abbot's little twitchy responses. The climactic scene in every one of their movies involved Abbot in a panic attack. You spent half the movie going "Oh no! Don't! Don't! Don't!...AH! He did
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
OC Exercise: The Best Cure for Writers Block'Ello, Kitsune here. As many of you know, I'm currently working on a novel that is taking over my life. Recently, I've been having trouble keeping the personalities of my characters (who have changed a lot over the near eight years that I've been working on my novel) completely straight. I know my main character well enough, since the story follows her life closely, but sometimes I feel like I don't know everyone else in my world enough.OC Exercise: The Best Cure for Writers Block3 years ago in Writing More Like This
I'm sure you've all seen the character profiles before. (Name, age, height, physical description, likes, dislikes, etc.) I have filled out more of those than I care to admit, but they very seldom help. Therefore, I came up with this "OC Exercise" to help you get to know your characters better. The best part is, it will even get you some writing practice!
I highly suggest posting your finished products on deviantart and requesting a critique. This will not only help with your actual writing, but it mi
Knock Yourself OutKnock Yourself Out4 years ago in Writing More Like This
How to Write a [Near]-Fainting Experience
Brought to you by Super Editor
You've probably all read books or seen movies in which a character passes out. The heroine might swoon gracefully and collapse onto the floor or into the hero's arms. People rush to bring water, a doctor, or something to revive her. She then wakes up, rosy-cheeked and a bit distressed, and she fans herself for a while while insisting that she is fine.
Fainting in real life is not nearly so beautiful. Authors, especially ones with no experience, can sometimes fall for such idealized descriptions. I am (un)fortunate enough to have experience in this area, so I will share it here.
Quick Losses of Consciousness
Usually this involves an impact or a sudden pain. The character may have no idea what happened to him or her afterwards, and later results vary depending on the severity of any injuries sustained.
Real-life example: My mom used to work as a waitress during her teenage years, and Aunt Jennifer, her
Cedric, Age and Sex - 1 of 2Sex. That was the plan for the day. A date, followed by good sex all night. I could really work with that. Actually, anyone could work with that. It was just more difficult for me. But it was going to happen.Cedric, Age and Sex - 1 of 24 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
What I had left of life was damn sweet, that was for sure.
I shoved my hands in my pockets, strolling down the French streets, humming quietly to myself. The wonders of the classical period were paying off well, that was for sure. I didn't even notice the familiarity of the streets as I was too caught up in my own thoughts. I had a date! Who cared?!
I turned a corner. Nantes was a wonderful place, was it not? The beautiful French houses, the French people, their lovely culture, wasn't it great? I certainly thought so. Well, at the moment, anyway.
I turned another corner and my jaw dropped, staring face to face with someone I hadn't seen for a good ten years. He seemed just as surprised as I was. I jumped back, "Oh my God, it's you!" I pointed at him, surprised beyond belief.
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
DO's and DON'Ts of OCsDOs and DONTs of Creating OCs.DO's and DON'Ts of OCs6 years ago in General Non-Fiction More Like This
I'm not a brilliant or fantasmically talented writer, but I know a decent OC when I see one. Or at least a non-crappy one.
I think we know how this works. Here we go
1. DO Try to vary your OCs personalities. In the real world, if everyone had the same awesome, flawless character, life would be mind-numbingly BORING. Also, not everyone is nice/horrible/depressed/energetic all the time. (Unless, of course, you want to use that as a flaw.)
2. DONT get too hung up on making profiles for your characters. Profiles are for procrastinators who want to make a fantastic character without getting started on the actual story. I was guilty of it too, before I realised how boring filling out the same form over and over again was.
Try describing them in the story, THEN make notes to help you remember stupid boring details like their star-sign and eye colour so you dont accidentally change them halfway through the st
SW 101: Writers BlockSW 101: Writers Block4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Hello there everyone! I see you have called in an emergency. What's that? You have *gasps* writers block? Well have no fear! You've come to the right place! The Writerbusters will help you in no time!
The Opening Sequence
Alright, so you have a story going with characters and a good idea on where you want to go, you just don't know how to start it. That's perfectly fine. Take the time to look over different movies and how they begin. Notice how in Legally Blonde it's a continuing shot of the sorority the main character Elle along with the other girls live in. This kind of intro helps the audience get a good feel for who the character is and what their life is like. So naturally, from seeing the opening sequence, you should have gotten the idea that all these girls are very girly and live life in the lap of luxury and fashion. Another good idea to begin the film is the opening to the King's Speech, directed by Tom Hooper and written by David Seidler, the movie opens up with a lon
Character Cliches to AvoidCharacter Cliches to Avoid (Like the Plague)Character Cliches to Avoid5 years ago in Writing More Like This
This tutorial-suggestion love child will be split into two parts :: 1 for cliches that should NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVUR be done by anyone, and the second part being ones that shouldn't be done by beginning writers.
Section One: The Black Plague
These are character cliches that are so overdone that they should NEVER be done anymore. EVER.
Not a lot to say on this one. There's nothing worse than reading a piece of writing though with a main character or side character that never got the character development that they deserved.
This is my name for characters that never change through the series/work. Your character should always grow with each obstacle they're faced with.
Characters with Atrociously-Spelled Names
Let's just say that if I have to get out the pronounciation guide to get through the first half of your character's name, it shouldn't be done.
Knowing Your CharacterIn a storywhether it be told on stage, on screen, or in printknowing your main characters inside and out helps create a well rounded and interesting plot. It also makes writing them easier too. In this guide, a companion to To Create a Character, I'll attempt to help put skin and flesh on the bare bones of a character, to create "character," and to discover things about them that youthe creatornever knew.Knowing Your Character4 years ago in Writing More Like This
Exercise 1: Interviews
One of my favorite ways to get to know my character is to interview them as one would a celebrity. The interview can be general, just asking about their life, likes, pet peeves, etc. or it can be prior to or after a significant event (i.e. just saved the world, just won the World Cup, recently defeated by protagonist, etc.).
Here's a list of interesting things to ask your character:
- Do you have any pet peeves?
- What do you think of [insert character here]'s opinion on y