Archive for the ‘ Writing Tips ’ Category

Character Family: #Preptober, Day 12

Family members are an important part of any story. Even if they're absent, long dead, or unresponsive, our family helps shape us as people. So why would it be any different for fictional characters? As Flannery O'Connor once observed: "Anybody who has survived his childhood has enough information about life to last him the rest of his days." Almost everything we say or do can be traced, Continue Reading...

Character Flaws: #Preptober, Day 11

Character flaws – who needs 'em? You do! Or, rather, your character does. But why would you want to go and ruin a perfectly good character? Because that's what makes them interesting! Human beings, for better or for worse, all have flaws. Sometimes they're pretty obvious. Narcissists, for instance, are pretty easy to spot. (America's current President, for one ludicrously outsized Continue Reading...

Character Hobbies: #Preptober, Day 10

Let's talk about hobbies. Not yours, your character's! My character usually have really weird hobbies, because they're often things that sound interesting to me, but that I could never devote that much time to studying or training for in my real life. They're a chance for me to put my strange obsessions to good use, or to delve deeper into curiosities I've had for a while but never really Continue Reading...

Character First Impressions: #Preptober, Day 9

Today, let's talk about the kind of first impressions your character makes. They say you only have one chance at a first impression, which is a bit of a tautology. Nevertheless, it's true that first impressions can be hard to shake. What kind of first impression does your MC give readers? When we first meet your character, on page one, what are they doing? Are they doing something they Continue Reading...

Character Mood: #Preptober, Day 8

Today, let's talk about your character's mood. Actually, characters typically have many moods. But first let's talk about their baseline. What kind of a person is your character, in general? Optimist? Pessimist? Realist? Is the glass half empty, half full, or just a tasty glass of their favorite beverage and enough with the philosophy already? Mood can be tricky to pin down. Mood can also Continue Reading...