Speed Writer – A Confession
Reading Time: 3 minutes “If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster.” Isaac Asimov Confessions I have two confessions to make. I am a speed writer and I have never done NaNoWriMo. The idea of sitting down in November and writing a 50,000 word novel intrigues me. […]
I am the Writer
Reading Time: 3 minutes I am the Walrus John Lennon The Writer John Lennon penned this iconic song, in part, as a response to all the time and energy people were spending trying to decipher meaning from the Beatles music. So I thought that would be a humorous, and hopefully catchy, title and lead image. For, “I am the […]
Using clichés in fiction
Reading Time: 4 minutes “I encourage students to pursue an idea far enough so they can see what the clichés and stereotypes are. Only then do they begin to hit pay dirt.” Robert Morgan To Cliché or not to Cliché? Clichés. We love them and we hate them. A quick Google search yields a copious quantity of articles defining […]
Using a deep point of view.
Reading Time: 3 minutes “Who says he’s seeing this place the way we’re seeing it? Humans see what they want to see. You’re very stubborn—er, persistent, that way?” Richard Riordan, The Lightening Thief Albert and I were sitting around the fire with a few other writer friends. I was in a meditative mood, listening to and, sometimes vainly, following […]
Let your characters fail.
Reading Time: 6 minutes “Be a sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them–in order that the reader may see what they are made of.” Kurt Vonnegut Kurt Vonnegut’s quote is shocking. Should we really be sadists and do horrible things to our darling lead characters? I mean, they are the […]
Why you should hide your villain
Reading Time: 4 minutes “Nobody is a villain in their own story. We’re all the heroes of our own stories.” George R. R. Martin Why should you hide your villain? In the days of the melodramas and silent movies, the villain was often easy to pick out. He often dressed in dark clothes, sneered a lot, and his intentions […]
Are there only 36 stories?
Reading Time: 2 minutes “We tend to prefer stories that fit into the molds which are familiar, and reject narratives that do not align with our experience.” Andrew J. Regan et al., The Emotional Arcs of Stories are Dominated by Six Basic Shapes. Only 36 stories? I first heard this startling statistic several years ago. It seemed impossible to […]
What makes for a good villain?
Reading Time: 4 minutes “A villain must be a thing of power, handled with delicacy and grace. He must be wicked enough to excite our aversion, strong enough to arouse our fear, human enough to awaken some transient gleam of sympathy. We must triumph in his downfall, yet not barbarously nor with contempt, and the close of his career […]
Why you should have flaws in characters
Reading Time: 4 minutes “Flaws would not only bring death but, far worse, humiliation.” ― William Goldman, The Princess Bride We spend millions of dollars per year trying to hide those flaws and wrinkles we deem unattractive and humiliating. Dozens, if not hundreds, of magazines, promise ways to either remove or at least hide the blemishes. We earnestly seek any way […]