Category: Writing Advice

Writing a Strong Antagonist
June 20, 2017 Writing Advice J.K. Allen

This month we are talking about character development. There is one character that is often underdeveloped or cliché in our stories. The antagonist. Too often he is an all black wearing, mustache twirling, cackling villain who monologues too much for his own good. He’s a cardboard cutout and greatly weakens your story. So how do

Working Your Characters With An Ancient System
June 19, 2017 Writing,Writing Advice Nancy E Miller

 Sometimes it isn’t the newest tool in the box that does the best job. It might take a tool your grandfather passed down to you to make sense of the situation. Such is the Enneagram. The graphic is representative of an ancient symbol and system of thought. David Wisehart explains in his book, “How to

Top 10 Character Tropes and How to Twist Them
June 15, 2017 Writing Advice Heidi Angell

Hello Lovely Writers! There are literally thousands of character tropes in the literary world. Some are good, so good that they border on cliche. Others are offensive to certain groups because they rely heavily on stereotypes. But why do we use tropes in the first place? For the same reason that stereotypes hold a place,

Two Steps to Developing Characters through Research
June 13, 2017 Writing Advice J.K. Allen

This month we are talking all about characterization. Characterization is important because characters bring our stories to life and create an emotional connection with our readers. Even with the most exciting plot, we need strong, well-developed characters to populate our world. And how do we develop our characters? With the right amount of research. There

Follow Your Character Around
June 12, 2017 Writing Advice Nancy E Miller

After our house burned down came the horrendous job making a list of everything we lost. While I am sure most people just put the big stuff, I visualized the rooms down to pulling out drawers and opening cabinets. The frustrated agent said it took two women six weeks to type it all in and

Character Development Courtesy of World Building
June 9, 2017 Writing Advice Stacy Overby

Have you ever stopped to think about how environment affects development? In psychology, one theory examining the interaction between development and environment is Ecological Systems Theory by Urie Bronfenbrenner. Now, I’m sure you’re wondering what does this have to do with writing and character development, but trust me a little. It does. Let’s take a

The Reality of Character Development
June 7, 2017 Writing Advice E.C. Jarvis

Sometimes known as a character arc, character development is simply the ways in which your characters change throughout the span of your story. Real life is an ever-evolving thing. We move forwards through space and time, each of us on a unique path which has never happened before and will never be repeated in the

7 Steps to Well Rounded Character Development
June 6, 2017 Writing Advice J.K. Allen

Characters are the life of our stories and so it’s important to get them right. We don’t want flat characters, stereotypes, or clichés. You can have the best, most exciting plot, but it will fall flat if peopled by weak characters. So how do we develop our characters? Start with personality. Is she an extrovert

What’s Your Character’s Character?
June 5, 2017 Writing Advice Nancy E Miller

 In the days of olde, when I was a young lass, I played Dungeons and Dragons. One of the first things you did when working up your character was to pick what type of person he/she was. I’m not talking about half-elf or dwarf. I mean his/her basic make-up.  Its moral code. The three main

Positive vs Negative Characters: Who Will Rivet Your Readers More?
June 2, 2017 Writing Advice Melinda Harmon

When you write for real people, you need to make sure your story comes across as real. If your readers do not relate to your story or your characters, it becomes a fruitless exercise. Creating your characters might seem complicated, but humans are complicated so that is a good start. Write down every personality trait

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