Characters do all kinds of things in fiction. Their actions make up the stories we write, and if they did nothing...it'd be pretty boring. But how much motivation should there be in what they do? Do you, as the author, need to always know why they're doing it, or can they just "do something for … Continue reading Character Actions: Should There Be a Reason Why?
You can't always tell who's going to pick up your story and read it. Sometimes, readers are unpredictable. Those who don't read your genre may stumble upon it and read it anyways, and what speaks to one person won't to another. But you can tell some things about your own story based on the fiction … Continue reading What Fiction Classifications Can Tell You About Your Readers
Continuing the Flashback Friday series, this post was originally written in June 2014. I came across Madame d’Aulnoy’s “Graciosa and Percinet” a few months back, when I was reading Phantastes and looking up the various fairy tales mentioned in the course of the book (it can be found in Andrew Lang’s “The Red Fairy Book” as a free … Continue reading Flashback Friday: An Obscure Fairy Tale with a Modern Twist
One of my friends has been trying to explain the ways, methods, and attraction of Dungeons and Dragons and other tabletop role playing games (RPGs). We've discussed how the game master gets to control certain aspects of the story, and yet the actual plot is left to chance (the dice) and the input and decisions … Continue reading Dealing with Other People’s Creativity #amwriting
A friend and I were recently reading the same fantasy story (which shall go unnamed, since I don't want to single out the author; many people, myself included, have been guilty of head-hopping at one point or another). When I commented that I didn't like the writing style due to its frequent head-hopping, he said … Continue reading Why Head Hopping Can Hurt Your Story
With the release of Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens, I heard a most unusual complaint: that it was written too much for the fans. Many who saw it thought it was a great movie, but there were some who felt it was too nostalgic. With so many nods to the original trilogy, they felt … Continue reading Is Star Wars Written for the Fans?
I recently watched the 1956 version of Anastasia with my friend and fellow-blogger, Christina Wehner. I grew up on the 1997 fantasy version and had long been curious to see the movie behind it. And it was interesting to watch, but I found the ending frustrating. Christina argued that it was designed to emphasize the … Continue reading Anastasia and The Importance of a Balanced Beginning
As part of a team of Beta readers, I was reading through Ryan Lanz's most recent work, in which he discusses where story ideas come from, and it got me thinking about the inspirations for my story ideas. Most of them, like my short story "But Kisses Never Hurt Me," are towers of "What if's," … Continue reading Music: Inspiration to Write
You have a brilliant story idea, relatable characters, and an interesting plot. The only problem is, it's too long for a single volume. But sequels and trilogies are all the rage and have been for years. It shouldn't be that hard to find a publisher...right? Theoretically, this is true, but it's still best to write … Continue reading Is Your Series Just One Giant Novel?
Humans are born storytellers. Shortly after learning to string sentences together, we start sharing them: “Mommy, I did this…” or “Daddy, I did that….” We are eager to hear about others experiences, supposedly to learn from them and avoid their mistakes, and we like basking in the glory that our own stories give us (after … Continue reading The Difference between Stories and Novels