Storybook EndingHer ink-stained lips have kissed too many a forgotten page,
and phoenix down]
And her Prince Charming has yet to come,
shattering like stars]
So all she can do is gaze out her tower window,
concealing poisoned apples]
Clutch that corroded and timeworn blade,
tearing down castle walls]
Toss her childhood fables to the waltzing of the moon,
[even broken wings
wish for happily ever afters]
[once upon a time
there was a girl who became her own hero.]
Tutorial - Understand And Resolve Social IssuesToday I want to share one of my deepest insights into human behavior that I always try to keep in mind.Tutorial - Understand And Resolve Social Issues2 years ago in Other More Like This
If you learn the 2 rules described and explained below, if you absolutely live and breathe them, you will wield immense social power. You will be able to understand and solve a lot of social issues - including a great many of the threads on the "help with life" forum here on dA. It's because all of these issues are just different manifestations of these 2 fundamental rules. I encourage you to actually learn them or even print them out.
The 2 Rules
Rule 1: "If someone is angry, they are actually hurt. If someone is hurt, they are actually feeling a loss."
Comment 1: Generally, loss means that an expectation of someone has not been met. To resolve someone's anger and feeling of hurt, you must understand their loss and address it.
Rule 2: "Whatever any human has ever said to another human is at its base either one of
Writing Lesson: Naming Your Character Your character's name is one of the most important decisions you have to make when writing a story. There are tons of resources for naming your characters (baby name websites being my personal favorite) but there are also many things you should take into consideration. Here are some do's and don'ts in no particular order.Writing Lesson: Naming Your Character2 years ago in Writing More Like This
Similar names for twins I read an article on names recently that expressly forbid the use of matching or similar twin names because it was "overdone". While yes, naming your twins Jayden and Kayden can be a bit tacky sounding, the truth is that people do it. A lot. I've personally met a pair of identical twins named Kirsten and Kristen. Do I think their parents are crazy? A little, but when you're choosing names for your twins, it's hard not to look for rhyming or alliteration. For writers, my only suggestion is to make them visually different enough that readers can tell them apart. Jace and Jackson are easy tw
The (Fictional) Vampire Bloodloss WorksheetThe (Fictional) Vampire Bloodloss Worksheet2 years ago in Other More Like This
First of all, I want to stress one thing here. This article is NOT about real vampires! I am a firm believer that there are real vampires out there and those people consume blood. They don't look/act like Dracula. They are rather ordinary and aren't making nightly kills in order to survive. This worksheet is for the many authors who are writing vampire stories where they need information as to how much blood their vampire characters will need to survive, and how much blood can be drained from their victims before they die.
The main reason I am writing this is that I'm an author too and in my pursuit to find this information, I have stumbled across so many other writers looking for the same thing. I have never seen this type of information collected into one place, so I decided to create this page in the hopes it might help a few people. Note that this could also be used for any general fiction where a victim has substantial bloodloss, such as a gunshot wound, etc.
Now, I'm not a
Fishing for INSPIRATION?Fishing for INSPIRATION?5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Fishing for INSPIRATION?
Your imagination is a pond that you fish your ideas from. Like any fishing pond, what you catch depends on what you've stocked your pond with and how much you put in there. If you fish for only the occasional idea, your little ideas have time to breed creatively until they overflow the pond, leaping right out into your hand -- and onto your keyboard. If you fish a lot, you will have to restock -- Frequently.
A Dry Pond = Writer's Block
What's in YOUR Imagination?
What do you KNOW?
What do you love to Do, to Study, to Think About, to Talk About...? Make a list of all the things you know well and all the things you've done -- seriously! Mythology, history, any retail jobs you might have had -- anything you might have seen, done, or studied.
WHO do you KNOW?
Have you ever met...?
A real Criminal?
A real Hero?
A real Romantic?
10Q Writers' Tutorial: EasyTen Easy Questions to Fix Your Fantasy Story10Q Writers' Tutorial: Easy5 years ago in Writing More Like This
(may also work for sci-fi)
So, you've written your fantasy story and uploaded it to dA. Maybe it's a thousand-word short. Maybe it's a twenty-four-part epic. In either case, you know it rocks. There's a dashing/brooding hero/anti-hero, a beautiful/kick-ass heroine/seductress, and the most amazing fight/magical scene involving swords/fire-balls/spiritual-enlightenment that the world has ever seen.
The trouble is, no one's reading it. And, when they do, the comments are annoyingly lacking in the "OMG!" factor. Your readers just aren't "getting it". So how do you help these poor, unenlightened wretches to recognise the true jaw-dropping amazingness that is your story?
Well, you could sit them down and patiently talk them through every plot point and crowning-moment-of-awesome (after which they probably still wouldn't get it) or you could try this handy, ten-question tutorial.
Plotting-Murphy's Law MethodPlotting-Murphy's Law Method5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Plotting Tricks: The Murphy's Law Method
"What Can go Wrong SHOULD go Wrong."
If you want an easy way to plot out a story that your readers can't guess the end to by the fourth chapter, then THIS is the method for you!
Basically, you begin with a character and something they desire. They go after their desire which immediately sparks complications which become a Problem that your character has to solve.
Once the character applies their chosen Solution to their Problem, Murphy's Law kicks in. The Solution triggers yet another problem.
This pattern continues--Problem > Solution > Problem--so on and so forth until All the problems are solved and your character either reaches their goal, or achieves an even better one--or dies.
This method is extremely effective when plotting out Adventure stories of any kind. In fact, Van Helsing, National Treasure, Inkheart, Pirates of the Caribbean, Indiana Jones, Lara Croft, the James Bond movies, most RP video games,
Types of Mary-Sue'sAngsty Sue: This type of Sue is created for people to feel bad for because of some dark past. Every other character in the story (unless they're mean or spiteful) will always make the Sue’s angst the biggest issue in the story and the fact that she constantly dwells in her own self pity will be considered a “natural reaction”. If two characters both have traumatic experiences, the Sue will receive more attention no matter what. The main goal of these is often to have the OC cuddle with a canon character.Types of Mary-Sue's10 months ago in Writing More Like This
Example one: Fred has just had his leg chopped off and will die if he does not receive medical attention immediately, but Mary-Sue is crying because of her daddy issues so everyone is busy comforting her. When Fred tries to call attention to the fact that he’s dying, the others will call him selfish for not caring about Mary-Sue.
Example two: Best friends, Lucy and Mary-Sue were both kidnapped. Lucy was raped, and Mary-Sue witnessed it. W
5 Ways to Get Fantasy WrongYes, you're writing a fantasy story. Yes, that means many of the normal "rules" of reality are suspended. It doesn't mean you can just write whatever you like and expect your readers to swallow it. The existence of dragons they'll probably accept. Moscow being the capital of France they probably won't.5 Ways to Get Fantasy Wrong3 years ago in Writing More Like This
The key to "selling" weird, fantasy stuff to your reader (like dragons and half-elves) is making the world at large believable. This means getting the simple things right. So on that note:
1. Factual Errors
There are things in the wide-world of fiction that are fantasy elements; things like dragons, unicorns, and women who find beards sexy. There are other things in the wide-world of fiction that are factual elements; things like the speed of an average horse, the boiling point of water, and the observation that iron rusts.
Clearly, these are not two distinct categories that can have a line neatly drawn between them. You may have creat
The Secret to ParagraphingThe Secret to Paragraphing5 years ago in Writing More Like This
The SECRET to Proper Paragraphing
(NOT a punctuation article.)
Once you know what your characters and doing and saying, how do you get all that down on Paper without ending up with a huge confusing mess?
Putting the Story on Paper.
Everybody knows that when a new speaker speaks they get a new paragraph, right? In other words, you DON'T put two different people talking in the same paragraph. Okay, yeah, so anyone who has written any kind of fiction learns this pretty darned quick, (usually from their readers.)
What nobody seems to get is that the same goes for a new character's ACTIONS. Seriously, when a new character ACTS they're supposed to get their own paragraph -- even if they don't speak!
In short, you paragraph by change in CHARACTER -- not because they speak, but because they ACT. Ahem... Dialogue is an ACTION. In other words, the reason you don't put two different characters' Dialogue
A Guide to Character SheetsAlmost as soon as they were invented, people have been feuding over the effectiveness of character sheets. Some say they are godsends and they couldn't possibly create characters without them. Others say they only create flat characters and there's absolutely no reason why any writer should need to know the smallest and most minute details that character sheets call for. And then there are the writers that don't know which side of the debate they should listen to.A Guide to Character Sheets3 years ago in Writing More Like This
The easiest answer to that question is it's a personal decision that every writer needs to make for themselves. But before you make that decision, maybe you should know how they work and the benefits you can gain from them.
You see, when used correctly, sheets can really assist an author in keeping the facts about their world and characters straight. Otherwise, on page ten little Anne has green eyes, but on page thirty-two they change to blue, and miraculously enough on page fifty-five they're brown or back to green.
NAPOWRIMO 30 Days of PromptsDay 1: I am a poet.NAPOWRIMO 30 Days of Prompts2 years ago in Literature Templates More Like This
Day 2: I own my flesh.
Day 3: Tell a lie.
Day 4: Love through letters.
Day 5: A thousand kisses deep.
Day 6: Monochromatic fears.
Day 7: You have 7 days to live.
Day 8: Glow in the dark stars
Day 9: Misplaced bones
Day 10: Write as if you are a body part.
Day 11: Wake the dead.
Day 12: Love bites
Day 13: I never think about ____ anymore.
Day 14: Find me.
Day 15: 7 Deadly Sins
Day 16: 3AM coffee
Day 17: Kiss the stars on her arms.
Day 18: ‘Last night—’
Day 19: What is your sign? Write about it.
Day 20: Galaxy skin
Day 21: What is tangled up in your heartstrings?
Day 22: A fight in a stairwell
Day 23: A forbidden desire
Day 24: Stitched the words into my heart
Day 25: Cross-hatched skin
Day 26: Artist fingers
Day 27: Holding up the universe
Day 28: Dig deep
10Q Writers' Tutorial: HeroTen Easy Questions to Fix Your Fantasy Hero10Q Writers' Tutorial: Hero4 years ago in Writing More Like This
(may also work for sci-fi)
Fantasy is all about heroes. Dashing knights in shining armour. Swashbuckling pirates in baggy trousers. And sultry princesses in not-a-lot-really.
No story can last longer than the opening few paragraphs without characters, and no character in the history of story-telling has ever been as awesome as yours. They've got it all: good looks, witty words, deadly swordsmanship, wizz-bang magic, and a backstory of almost poetic tragedy. What they don't have is any rabid fans.
Why? How could your readers possibly miss the ass-kicking/heart-breaking/swoon-inducing nature of your character's mad-skills/emotional-depth/pant-wetting-charm?
Well, they might well be idiots. Or you might want to take a look at this concise (ha!) Ten Question Tutorial.
It's worth a shot? Isn't it?
This tutorial will focus almost exclusively on the main protagonist.
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
Sentence Structure for FICTIONSentence Structure for FICTION5 years ago in Writing More Like This
On Basic Sentence Structure for Fiction
(Grammar Nazis BEWARE!)
Everything I ever learned about writing Fiction DIDN'T come from school; not even college. In fact, the way one writes fiction is almost the complete opposite of everything I learned in school about writing.
In order to make my stories crystal clear in my readers' imaginations, I write in precise Chronological Order, in the order events actually happen, PLUS in the order that the eye sees it.
Case in point, when describing a character, I describe them from top to bottom, in the order that the eye notices them. Face, hair, upper body, arms, hands, then lower body, legs, feet, then over all impression.
High Speed STORIESHigh Speed STORIES5 years ago in Writing More Like This
When you absolutely, positively, HAVE to get the story done.
The trick to speed-writing is to Plan the story out first, more commonly known as PLOTTING.
"Diabolic" was written in 30 days -- all 15 chapters at 2500 to 3000 words per chapter, adding up to around 80k (thousand) words. A novel is 90k to 100k. I was able to do this because I already knew my main characters really well, (Vincent and Sephiroth of Final Fantasy VII,) and I knew where my story ENDED. Basically, once I knew where I wanted to go, all I had to do was figure out how to get there.
Note: If you're interested, DIABOLIC can be found at Media Miner. The 'Search' feature is your friend!
The plot outline I used only had 5 points:
1. Beginning - The Main Character gets involved with the Villain or Lover.
2. Complications - The situation worsens.
3. Emotional Turning Point - Panic Attack! Fear and/or Guilt vs. Desperation
4. Reversal - The wor
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
The Chronology of StorytellingImagine you're reading to a live audience. It can be as big or small as you'd like. It can be your writing or someone else's. It doesn't matter. Indulge yourself in the fantasy. So you're reading to a live audience. They're enraptured. They're engrossed. They're generating a movie in their heads as you weave your tale. Imagine how important every word you produce is to these movies. Every detail you provide adds another layer. They smell the flowers. They feel the roughness of the brick. They see the vivid colors of the clothes.The Chronology of Storytelling2 years ago in Writing More Like This
And then you require they perform time travel to make the movies accurate.
The chronology, or order of events, in a story is something I've been focusing on a lot in my writing lately. I'm not just talking about the overall chronology. There's obviously a beginning, middle, and end to a story. You progress from one event to the next. Things happen in chronological order. That's how, y'know, stories make sense. That's also
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
My Beta-Readers QuestionnaireMy Beta-Readers Questionnaire5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Anyone who writes with the intent to be read by the public, from the brand-name published authors to the fan-fiction scribbler, will tell you that a good Beta Reader is worth their weight in GOLD.
So, what is a Beta Reader really FOR?
Most Beta Readers look for obvious grammar boo-boos and glaring spelling errors, but the really good ones look at your story as a whole and tell you where your strengths and weaknesses are so you can adjust them.
These are what I ask MY Beta readers to check.
-- Whether you're a Writer looking to check your work or a Beta Reader who wants to point out a few things to your favorite writer, feel free to borrow, spindle, and mutilate this list of questions to your heart's desire.
MY Beta-Reader's Questionnaire
Is it BORING?
- Does any part of the story Drag?
- Are their parts that you skipped to get to 'the good part'?
- Do I over-inform anywhere? (Also known as Info-Dumping.)
Did you G
The LAYERS of FictionThe LAYERS of Fiction5 years ago in Writing More Like This
"If you have Action and Dialogue, do you really NEED Description too?
What is the difference?"
The Layers of Fiction
"Himawari-chan, I have your lunch!"
"Here you go Himawari-chan!"
"Thank you, Watanuki-kun!"
"You are very welcome, Himawari-chan."
"I see. Of course. Thank you, Yuuko-san. Do I need to tell you what she said?"
"No! No, you don't, and I don't want to hear it! I don't need a freaking baby-sitter!"
"Yuuko thinks you do."
"That's her! Not me!"
"Are you a fortune-teller?"
"No! Of course not!"
"I'll come get you after class. I'll get the instructor to let you wait while I practice."
"What? No! I said I don't want to wait !"
"You gonna eat that?"
"Yes I am!"
"I do not, not, NOT take orders from you!"
This is "Talking Head Syndrome." There are no dialogue tags, because I don't use them.
Reading as a WriterHave you ever set down a book for good because you found something in it you don’t like? If you want to write, I suggest that bad habit end now.Reading as a Writer1 year ago in Writing More Like This
Why, you ask? Because everything you read—and I mean everything–has positive value for you as a writer. Stephen King, and any author worth his or her salt, is a huge advocate of writers reading massive amounts.
Again you ask, why? How can everything be useful? There are a number of reasons and I’ll cover as many as I can.
Reading bad literature teaches you about yourself and shows you what to avoid—or at least how not to do something—in your own work. If you run across something that you don’t like, stop and ask yourself why you don’t like it. Is it just a personal preference? Was it out of place or poorly executed? Does it contradict something from earlier? As soon as you figure out the “why” of something’s badness, you learn a little about yourself and you
Punctuating DialoguePunctuating Dialogue1 year ago in Writing More Like This
For non-native English speakers and young readers: If you hover over a blue word, you'll see its definition.
Punctuating dialogue can be surprisingly difficult, even for people whose first language is English. It's one of the things that you see all the time in books, but you pay little attention to, and all your English teachers assume that you already know it. Sure, if you read a lot, you pick up the basics, but even then it can be difficult to unconsciously absorb all the rules. (Until 2012, I was making heinous mistakes with commas vs. periods. I'm still weeding out errors from my novel.)
Anyhow, for the sake of my fellow spirits who bemoan the lack of proper dialogue education, I've researched the subject and compiled this little guide. I hope that it answers your questions, and that it isn't too dull.
Note: I use American English. Other English-speaking countries may have slightly different rules.
Anatomy of Dialogue
I'm going to be using these term