What do you believe? What interests you? What questions do you have? Are you looking for answers? Commit to your beliefs. Let the truth come out through your writing. Start with the simplest beliefs and then spread out, allowing them to become complicated. What are the consequences of your beliefs? What is the good and [...]
What the character says reveals more than pages of description. She reveals herself through her words; her thoughts, feelings and influence. When she says “Politicians! They should be cut into pieces and fed to the lions” you know her better than if you had just written ‘She had extreme opinions on politicians.’
Read the papers and books, watch the news, listen to the radio, all the while making notes of any interesting ideas. Can dull and boring ideas be made interesting? What if you raise the stakes, add twists, change locations? By reframing the facts, you will find the stories to want to write.
More than any other quality, contrast defines characters. By contrasting two characters, the strongest character dynamics are achieved. Almost any relational story that comes to mind, whether a romance, a partnership, or a friendship, probably contains contrasting characters. Keep the association between characters tight. Ensure they need each other for things to work. Change the [...]
Find a box. Fill it with clips of text and photographs clipped from magazines and newspapers. Give your box a shake. Pull out two or more pieces. Lay out on the table and work out the connections. Start writing.
We, the readers, have total control over your story. We control when we start to read and when we stop. You cannot force us to do anything. This is our choice. We want to read stories filled with a sense of continuity and life. We are looking to step into the characters’ skins and to [...]
I write lists in the back of my notebook. Or sometimes on scraps of paper. These ‘sentence starters’ becoming the perfect jumping off point into your writing. This first sentence starter is called ‘The Time’. The point is to list as many standout moments as possible. For instance, it could start: The time our son [...]