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
A Tutori-scussion DraftsFirst drafts are fun. Don't look at me like that, they are. Just putting your words down on paper, letting the story escape from your brain and actually exist on paper? That's brilliant. Now, if you get hit by a car or fall into a coma or something, the words are still there. The story didn't die with you.A Tutori-scussion Drafts2 years ago in Other More Like This
Of course, that's just as long as you know what's going to happen. The second you reach a scene that you just can't figure out, everything goes downhill. When you hit that glass wall in your brain where suddenly nothing wants to make sense anymore, or that technical detail you've been putting off dealing with because you'll figure it out when you get to it (oh wow you got to it time to figure it out), it gets a lot less fun.
And that's the hard part about first drafts. There's nothing more terrifying than a blank page when you have no idea what to put on it. I imagine that this is particularly difficult for writers who have already been published and have contracts
NAPOWRIMO 30 Days of PromptsDay 1: I am a poet.NAPOWRIMO 30 Days of Prompts3 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
Guide to Writing SummariesThis is to all of my fanfiction.net peeps, and to anyone who wants to learn how to write a quick, less-than-five sentences summary of their fanfiction or story.Guide to Writing Summaries1 year ago in Writing More Like This
1. For the love of all that is good fanfiction/writing, stop writing summaries like this:
A story about a boy and a girl that meet on vacation...Sry I suck at summaries. Plz read. It's good I promise. I am so much better at writing stories than writing summaries. Before you even try to give me an excuse, let me give you a fact. 99.99999999% of readers DO NOT EVEN BOTHER TO READ YOUR STORY BECAUSE OF THAT. I can't tell you how many times I have seen that on FFN and I just keep on scrolling past every story with one of those. You may not intend it, but this is the message you are sending to potential readers:
"I am not going to even try writing a summary because I am not confident at all in my writing abilities. I am a novice please give me a chance please please please!"
...No. Just no.
Help! I have a Mary Sue!Help! I have a Mary Sue!2 years ago in Writing More Like This
You know that you have a Mary Sue when she upsets the monochromatic color scheme of my Writer's Guides.
Mouse over blue text to see a note.
Internet communities often lash out at writers who create Mary Sues. Declaring the writing to be below their standards, they proceed to punish the creators. They mock the characters, verbally abuse the writers, and write hyperbolically about how much they wish the characters would die.
Bullying writers (who may be very young) is only going to make them afraid to write—and therefore improve—or share their work. Not only that, but it discourages other writers from speaking for fear of public mockery, and it may silence the voices that could someday become great.
If you've directly or indirectly suffered from the abuse of such individuals, let me first apologize on their behalf. I don't care if your story stinks so much that it can be smelled from fifty miles away; mocking you
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 Writer2 years 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
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's2 years 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
How to avoid creating a Mary-sueHow to avoid creating a Mary-sue OC.How to avoid creating a Mary-sue2 years ago in Writing More Like This
Ever read a story containing a freakishly perfect character? These are some steps to avoid it:
1.) Know what you’re writing about.
Don’t start writing about something you don’t know too much about. Do some research (that’s why google exists!!! Duh…)
2.) Give them an obvious flaw.
Everyone has at least one flaw in their personality, and doesn’t get it perfect the first time round. Make them impatient (just an example) or make sure if they’re good at something they don’t get it right first time round.
3.) Make them share the ‘spotlight.’
Make sure you don’t make your OC be the center of the universe! Seriously, that doesn’t seem realistic… Make them be part of a group. Let the other characters (from the anime/manga/whatever you’re writing a fanfiction about) have moments when their minds aren’t flooding with thoughts of your OC.)
4.) Take things slow. (*laughin
Writing Lesson: Your Character's Parents While I am not a professional by any means, I have been writing for many years and, more recently, beta-reading as well. In all of my experience, I've noticed that a lot of to-be authors follow the easy trends and miss out on some great story telling opportunities. Hopefully this guide will help you improve your story and learn that the easy way out isn't always the best! If you would like more writing guides and tutorials, check out the description below.Writing Lesson: Your Character's Parents3 years ago in Writing More Like This
For this "Quick Tips" entry, I'm going to focus on an important part of back story: parents.
*Please note! I understand that, unfortunately, not everyone reading this has parents. If your parents have passed away or are otherwise absent, please forgive anything written here that might be considered upsetting. These scenarios are for fictional parents only and when I say "dead", I do not mean it to sound nearly as insensitive as it
Synonyms, the Thesaurus, and YouEvery now and then, I see one of those lists going round, be it on Tumblr, shared on blogs, or whatever. You know, those lists; the ones that go on for eight miles listing ten synonyms for dozens of common words.Synonyms, the Thesaurus, and You2 years ago in Writing More Like This
I hate those lists. In the wrong hands, they often do more harm than good. And in the right hands, they‘re just sort of useless.
There's one going around I do rather like, because it points out the idiocy of these lists. At the top, it says, 'instead of whispered, consider…' and lists off a whole bunch of words. One of those words is 'insinuated'. And the very first response to that list? 'Aye lil mama, let me insinuate in ya ear.' Now, that sentence sounds utterly ridiculous, because whisper and insinuate do not mean the same thing. Not even close. But these lists are often rife thesaurus copypasta like this that upon closer inspection make very little sense.
Let's take the word 'got' for a mome
Character Bio TemplateCharacter BioCharacter Bio Template2 years ago in Literature Templates More Like This
Meaning of Name:
Nickname(s) [If Any]:
Height & Body Type:
Type of Dresser:
Hair Color & Style:
Interests (different than likes and dislikes. What does your character have a passion for?):
Self-Image (how does your character see him/herself? Is he/she confident, or are they insecure?):
Weakness (Must have at least one):
Popular(extravert) or Loner (introvert):
How to get front pagePlease note that this is NOT a "How to be popular" tutorial, because you don't need to be popular to get front page, though with the way that dA is run, it would certainly help you get there even with the crappiest doodle you've ever drawn!!!How to get front page5 years ago in DeviantArt Tutorials More Like This
Option 1: "Artistic" nudity
Everyone knows that naked pictures of girls don't have to be artistic to be put up on dA! Just say that it is, and hope that the perverts that come to look at your model's boobs say something about how the shading works so well for the mood of the picture and you're GOLDEN.
Why this works: Because everyone just wants a good full blown crotch shot!
Obviously the people here just want to get a good look at the naked body of a human being. So just feed their desires and hope that everyone else will just mistake it for art rather than pornography and inappropriate pictures! In order to do that though, you need to get an interesting angle, and then change around the levels and contrast of the picture in photoshop, (if
My Friend's Mary SueMy Friend's Mary Sue7 months ago in Writing More Like This
How to Help a Friend
While I focuses on friends with Mary Sues, most of this advice also applies to family members, art idols, and strangers.
Have you ever picked up a new story, feeling good about its potential to lift you up and alleviate your boredom, only to find that it houses a dreaded Mary Sue?
You stare at the piece of paper. Now what? You aren't pond scum, so you know better than to type "ur chara is a mary sue, u suck, go die in a hole." But what do you say? On the one hand, you don't want to hurt the writer's feelings, or turn them off of writing forever. But on the other, you feel that you have to say something...
This guide will help you respond to a situation like this. It will help you critique friends without making them mad at you, offer gentle pointers to your overeager little brother, or know when to back away from t
Simplified Character ProfileThis is a stripped down version of my previous character profile. Use it to simply develop a personality (the heart and soul), and then you can reuse it in various stories under different character names.Simplified Character Profile5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Self Description (who the character believes they are):
Virtues (good personality traits):
Vices (undesirable personality traits):
Personality flaws (I guess this could also fit under vices):
Most common emotions:
Emotions they try to block or hide:
Personal Values (moral values/ethics, personal outlook on life, etc):
How does the character feel about themselves? (things/aspects/features about them that they like, dislike, reject or would change if they could):
Ambition (what they ultimately want):
Motive (why they want the ambition and how they plan to get it):
Any conflicting desires? (one desire preventing the obtaining of another):
Problems (both internal and external, things
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
Writer's Tip: Writing Effective SentencesSentences—if the plot is the backbone of a story, then sentences are the muscles and tendons keeping it glued together. Unfortunately, writing solid sentences isn’t easy for everyone. As Human beings, we don’t speak the same way we write. Unless you do a lot of writing, you may have trouble putting together even the simplest of sentences. The last time you took a good look at a sentence and broke it down into its individual parts was probably around 3rd grade. Don’t worry—I’m here to help.Writer's Tip: Writing Effective Sentences1 year ago in Writing More Like This
There’s More Than One Type of Sentence
There are (roughly) four different types of sentences, and we’re going to get into each of the different types (with examples!).
Simple Sentences – This is a sentence in its truest form. A simple sentence is the statement of a single idea in a direct, clear way. Most simple sentences contain less than 20 words, but it is best if you keep your word count aver
Ultimate Character ProfileGeneral Profile Info:Ultimate Character Profile5 years ago in Other More Like This
Nickname(s) (if any):
Occupation (how do they feel about their job?):
Economic Status (now and in the past):
Environment (how has it affected them now and in the past):
Religious Beliefs (how important is it to them?):
Body Type (endomorphic, ectomorphic or mezomorphic):
Hair (colour and style):
Accessories/Weapons (if any):
Powers (if any):
Magic and Powers:
Does this character know magic (spells, etc)?:
Does this character possess any kind of superpower?:
What are the limitations of this magic or power?:
What are the weaknesses of this magic or powe
The Wasteland AKA the MIDDLEThe Wasteland AKA the MIDDLE6 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