Jump to content

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'writing advice'.

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


Forums

  • Gay Authors Community
    • The Lounge
    • Help
  • Comicality's Shack Clubhouse's Cafe
  • Headstall's Paddock's Topics
  • Mikiesboy's Drop in Centre's Topics
  • C James Fan Club's Topics
  • Mark Arbour Fan Club's Topics
  • Stellar's Fan Club's Topics
  • In Memorium's Topics

Categories

  • Fiction
  • FanFiction
  • Poetry
    • 2024 - Seasons
    • 2023- Exploration -Poetry
    • 2015 Poetry Anthology: Remember
    • 2014 Poetry Anthology: A Storm Is Coming
    • 2013 Poetry Anthology: Whispers in the Dark
    • 2012 Poetry Anthology: Cracks of Time
    • 2011 Poetry Anthology: Into the Unknown
  • Fiction - Gay Authors Anthologies
    • 2024 - Long May You Run
    • 2023 - Leap of Faith
    • 2022 - Anniversary
    • 2021 - Spring - On The Road
    • 2021 - Spring - Potluck 2021
    • 2021 - Fall - A Winding Path
    • 2021 - Fall - An Unconventional Gift
    • 2021 - Fall - Potluck
    • 2020 - Spring - Full Moon
    • 2020 - Spring - The Storm
    • 2020 - Fall - Bridges
    • 2020 - Fall - Shadows
    • 2019 - Spring - Into the Stars
    • 2019 - Spring - Snapped
    • 2019 - Fall - Fall From Grace
    • 2019 - Fall - Raincheck
    • 2018 - Spring - Now or Never
    • 2018 - Spring - Encounters
    • 2018 - Fall - Fight Back
    • 2018 - Fall - Good Intentions
    • 2017 - Spring - Unintended Consequences & Jagged Edges
    • 2017 - Fall - The Fallout and Secret Spaces
    • 2016 - Spring - Crossing the Line
    • 2016 - Summer - Wicked Games
    • 2016 - Fall - Blindsided / The Forgotten
    • 2016 - Winter - Rewind: Pre-2016 Themes
    • 2015 - Spring - Full Circle
    • 2015 - Summer - Road Trip
    • 2015 - Fall - Blurred Edges
    • 2015 - Winter - Blackout
    • 2014 - Spring - Nature's Wrath
    • 2014 - Summer - The Backup Plan
    • 2014 - Fall - Scars
    • 2014 - Winter - Chain Reaction
    • 2013 - Spring - A Night To Remember
    • 2013 - Summer - Roll the Dice
    • 2013 - Fall - Pandora's Box
    • 2013 - Winter - Recipe for Disaster
    • 2012 - Spring - It Wasn't Me
    • 2012 - Summer - Choices
    • 2012 - Fall - Friends & Enemies
    • 2012 - Winter - Desperate Ends
    • 2012 - Special - Mayan Tribute: End of the World
    • 2012 - Anniversary - Secrets Can Kill
    • 2011 - Spring - People Are Strange
    • 2011 - Summer - Walk on the Wild Side
    • 2011 - Fall - Legends
    • 2011 - Winter - Aftermath
    • 2010 - Spring - I'd Never Do That
    • 2010 - Summer - Out of this World
    • 2010 - Fall - No Going Back
    • 2010 - Winter - Haunted
    • 2009 - Spring - Oops
    • 2009 - Summer - Carpe Diem
    • 2009 - Fall - Something Unexpected
    • 2009 - Winter - Deceptions
    • 2008 - Annual - It's Just a Game, Right?
    • 2008 - Spring - Living in the Shadows
    • 2008 - Summer - Escape
    • 2008 - Fall - Anniversary
    • 2008 - Winter - Ghosts
    • 2007 - Annual - The Road Not Taken
    • 2007 - Spring - Fairy Tales
    • 2007 - Summer - Ending and Beginnings
    • 2007 - Fall - The Rainy Day
    • 2007 - Winter - Worth Fighting For
    • 2006 - Winter - Blizzard
    • 2006 - Fall - Halloween
    • 2006 - Summer - Going on Vacation
    • 2006 - Spring - Day of Silence
    • 2004 - Winter - Christmas
  • Fiction - Story Contests
    • 2017- Halloween
    • 2017- April Fool's
    • 2016 - Secret Admirer Short Story
    • 2015 - Secret Santa Short Story
    • 2011 - Novella Contest
    • 2009 - Novella Contest
  • Non-Fiction
    • Writing Tips
  • Letters
  • Screenplays
  • World Building

Blogs

  • Liukas Soli's World of Words
  • Daddydavek's Blog
  • Escaping for just a little while
  • Myr's Corner
  • Tropical Paradise
  • Fortune and Mens Eyes
  • Wildenberg’s Blog
  • Gay Authors News
  • Incubus Lover
  • harcallard's Blog
  • Memoirs of Forgiveness
  • The Fantastic Mr. Wilde
  • 2010
  • GREEN & CHAZ'S BLOG
  • Daddydavek's other Blog
  • A Demented Blog
  • No longer here
  • Toast
  • but don't forget about my bomb...
  • Pocket Full Of Stars
  • Val's Blog
  • harveybirdman's Blog
  • Wombat Bill's out takes
  • What are you currently reading?
  • Writing Unblocked
  • Daveys Blog
  • A Stone's Throw
  • Stephanie L Danielson's Blog
  • Vic's Blog
  • Grunge - Zen
  • Just a thought
  • seanriter's Blog
  • wildone's other Blog
  • My Daily Bread Crumbs
  • Wry Wrambling of a Rebellious Rimbaud
  • mr.chris' blog
  • Fir Pro Diet
  • Mark Arbour's Pride
  • James Matthews Blog
  • Viv's Blog
  • Qboi's Cogitations On Life
  • Words, Words and Words
  • Joe's Blog
  • Fishwings' Blog
  • Editor's Notebook
  • ;; " .MidnightSecret. " ;;
  • Z's Blog
  • mmike1969's Blog
  • scotty94's Blog
  • Mercys writing
  • Read my blog
  • huktaunluv's Blog
  • CF's Ramblings
  • Owls' hoot's
  • Ichthyic Insanity
  • My Only Escape
  • advocatus diaboli's Blog
  • Zuri's Blog
  • Thoughts And Ideas That I'm Happy To Share
  • Rise and Shine
  • Rising towards reinvention
  • Twilight Chronicles
  • thephoenix's Blog
  • Aditus' Road Blog
  • The River Song
  • Personal Blog
  • Bender's blog
  • Daddydavek's Other Other Blog
  • Libby Drew
  • jamessavik's Blog
  • Ron's Random Access
  • Stevie’s In Love
  • HearSay
  • TetRefine's Blog
  • mickey1952's Blog
  • The Bad Dog Chronicles
  • Sagar
  • Thorn's Edibles
  • Thoughts, Oddities and Utter Chaos
  • Insurgency's Blog
  • Blog Archive
  • Thicker Than Water
  • John Doe's Blog
  • paul.b's Blog
  • On The Outside, A Soundtrack
  • Xan's Blog
  • Chronicles of My Life
  • DynoReads' Blog
  • When I'm Stuck
  • Genderqueer Musings
  • Gay Authors Archive
  • Zot spot
  • Little Buddha's Thatched Hut
  • Arizona Legislature: Crazy, Stupid, Misguided...or all of the Above?
  • Caedus' Blog
  • ACEd it!
  • See My Secrets... See My Shame...
  • Caz Pedroso's Blog
  • Nephylim's Blog
  • quokka's Blog
  • Camy's Blog
  • arsimms' Blog
  • PrivateTim's Blog
  • Reset, Reload, Redo
  • Kurt's Corner
  • THIS IS NOT A BLOG
  • Cole Matthews' Dark and Dusty History Corner
  • trackstar195's Blog
  • Wolf At The Keyboard
  • vlista20's Blog
  • Esther Night
  • Life's a Conflagration
  • JohnAR's Blog
  • LouisHarris' Blog
  • I fell in love with my straight best friend & it destroyed our friendship
  • Luc's Dementia
  • Renee's News
  • I fell in love with my straight best friend & it destroyed our friendship
  • My blog
  • Douw's Blog
  • ColumbusGuy's Blog
  • BarricadeBoy's Blog
  • IBEX's Blog
  • Craftingmom's Blog
  • Marc's Blog
  • lostone's Blog
  • Hogan2015's Blog
  • old bob's Blog
  • lilansui's Blog
  • Musings from Valhalla
  • drak's sekrits
  • John B.'s Blog
  • The Wisdom of M
  • Albert Nothlit's Blog
  • Dabeagle's Blog
  • The Life and Times of a High School Dropout
  • Mann's Ramblings
  • Jay's Blog
  • The Jordanation
  • Alex Canton's Blog
  • JustynC's Blog
  • Love that always hurts
  • Drew's Slice of Pi
  • Bolg
  • Meh
  • Riding Thoughts
  • blogage
  • double meh
  • Ducks and Fucks
  • C James' Goatpen
  • wildone's Blog
  • TheBlackDragon's Blog
  • It's knotme
  • My Life - My Views
  • On Call
  • Blog of Cynus the Pan-Ace
  • Ninja Scroll
  • Fixing My Destiny
  • The Alphabet Game
  • skinnydragon's lunch
  • The Talon's Claw
  • peaceofthesouls' Blog
  • Brandon Smiling: The Soundtrack
  • nobody
  • Making of My Stories
  • Melancholy ... the broken staff of life
  • James Hiwatari's Blog
  • Victor's Wavering Weirdness
  • My Feelings
  • North to Alaska
  • TIMID
  • Nymphetamine Abuse
  • Edward's Blog
  • Random Thoughts of an Alpha Female
  • NightOwl88's Blog
  • Writing World
  • Put onto paper...
  • Freddyness' Blog
  • Looking for sense in the chaos of my thoughts
  • jeet01's Blog
  • The Persephone Chronicles
  • General Silliness
  • blog
  • KC's Blog
  • GaryKelly's Blog
  • Snowflake: The Soundtrack
  • RainbowPhoenixWI's Blog
  • MusicalAlchemy's Blog
  • Renee's Recipes
  • MusicalAlchemy's Blog
  • Hunter Thomson's Blog
  • lomax61's Blog
  • Mortal Morphology
  • Ieshwar's Blog
  • Andy's other Blog
  • Chatter from the Chatterbox
  • Cailen's Conclave
  • Cody Waustin's Blog
  • What once was is now lost.
  • In My Own Way
  • News of My World
  • Skywriting
  • hands in the air.
  • The Seashell: Soundtracks and Textures
  • CassieQ's Fractured Thoughts
  • Reflections
  • MHSebastian's Blog
  • Character Galleries
  • jamiiewhiite's Blog
  • Continuous Story
  • A.J.'s Blog
  • JC's Writing Blog
  • Glittery Place
  • Mark92's Blog
  • Mikiesboy's Blog
  • ValentineDavis21's Blog
  • Adagio: Music and Textures
  • V's blog
  • Day in the life of KibaNaru
  • S.L. Lewis Many Thoughts and Updates
  • Strife and Harmony
  • HB's Blog
  • Altimexis' Blog
  • Wayne's Updates
  • Just random entries
  • The Fall of Ast@r0th
  • nordmanni's Blog
  • journals of the poems
  • We're all mad here
  • clo's closet
  • Musings by MacGreg
  • Randomnicity (aka Jay's thoughts)
  • Billy Martin's Blog
  • Dodger the Blogger
  • Eric's Blog
  • This and That
  • The GA Law Blog
  • Nick Buchanan
  • Bloggie Blog Blog
  • D/s BDSM
  • Of Gratitude, Goofing Off, and Good Times
  • 365
  • The DL Diaries
  • Trebs' Blog
  • Labrador's Blog
  • Lit's Blog
  • What Scares You?
  • Claustrophile's Blog
  • Nobody likes you when you're 23.
  • Michael's Playroom
  • hh5's Blog
  • Percy's Blog
  • Mollyhousemouse's Stash
  • Life is worth an entry
  • podiumdavis' Blog
  • sean's scribbles
  • ryan jo's Blog
  • Moggy's Haunts
  • Menace Years
  • Jordan's Blog
  • Raphael Farmer's Blog
  • The CSU Stories
  • Prompt du jour
  • KingdombytheSea's Blog
  • Happy birthday and I'm sorry
  • The Yettie's Blog
  • The Secret Life Of Billy Chase: Music For A Teenage Dream
  • Gone From Daylight: The Music of the Darkness
  • Intellectual Circuit Boy Gone Seriously Crazy in Hollywood
  • Linxe Termoil's Blog
  • Le Musique de le Souvenir
  • Andy's Blog
  • AdamP's Blog
  • Methodwriter85's Blog
  • DragonFire's Cave
  • kjames' Blog
  • Blashi Blog Blog
  • Ravings of a VampireMystic
  • My kingdom by the sea
  • Rompecabezas
  • BB's Blog
  • vEETalk
  • The Saga Continues...
  • Ashi's Blog
  • The new kid in school music collection
  • Do the sins of a parent transfer to the child?
  • Once Upon a Time Prompts
  • According to Puppilull
  • Saint Peter
  • When Life Gives You Lemons Make Beef Stew (PRIVATE CLUB)
  • Dear G A
  • Comments, Musings, Ponderings, Thoughts, 'N' Thangs
  • blogage (PRIVATE)
  • Pride of Lions
  • Simply Sid
  • Loveless - The Jimmy LaPlane Experience
  • Rano's Blog
  • Goodbye my Love.
  • asamvav111's Rainbow Couch
  • Random Thought's
  • Musings From Me
  • joann414's Blog
  • THINK BEFORE YOU WRITE
  • Jesse 101 Soundtrack
  • Thoughts from the Faerie Fool
  • The Triple J Ranch
  • Marty's Musings
  • SimonOhNoes' Blog
  • Writing Life
  • layla's Nightwhisperz
  • A Class By Himself: Derrick’s Mixtape
  • Colored in Gray
  • Blog
  • S H E L T ER
  • TheLifeOfRydo
  • In Chandler’s Hands
  • Left Without Words
  • Gabriel Caldwell
  • miker33's Blog
  • rick thoughts
  • A Point of View...
  • Ranting and raving
  • The Great Escape
  • Autumn Dream's Blog
  • Umbereth
  • Dolores Esteban's Blog
  • Stuff from Cia
  • The Occasional rantings and ravings of Anita
  • Bandage's Blog
  • Waiting Outside The Lines
  • Delusions in A minor
  • The Vault of Worlds
  • Spots of Ink
  • My One Truth
  • GA Blogs's GA News Queue
  • GA Blogs's WW Queue
  • GA Engagement's Blog Staging
  • Review Team's Blog Staging
  • Site Archive of Doom's Blogs to Review
  • Site Archive of Doom's Archived Blogs
  • Prompt Team's Prompt Blog Posts

Product Groups

  • Member Groups
  • Advertising, Story / eBook Promotion

Categories

  • General Site Help
  • Step-By-Step Guides
  • Site Membership
    • Account Questions
    • Profiles
    • Rules and Discipline
  • Author Related Questions
    • Story Archive Author Questions
    • Authors
    • Tips & Tricks
    • Anthology Questions
  • Reader Questions
  • Forums
  • Forum Apps
    • Store
    • Blog
    • Gallery
    • Calendar
  • Advertisers

Find results in...

Find results that contain...


Date Created

  • Start

    End


Last Updated

  • Start

    End


Filter by number of...

Joined

  • Start

    End


Group


Favorite Genres


Topic Display Title


Interests


About Me


Website URL

Found 10 results

  1. Zuri

    Tell, don't recount

    Most of you will probably be familiar with the rule/advice "show, don't tell". (Actually, this advice is a little flawed in itself, as outlined in "Bad Character Intros vs Good Character Intros (Writing Advice)" by the YouTube channel "Writer Brandon McNulty", but that would be a whole over topic for another day ). What we are focussing on today, will be the telling aspect. Because, even though, there can be good "tell", when "show" wouldn't work, and then, there's bad "tell", which I will refer to as "recount", but I'll get to that in a bit. To explain what brought be to that distinction, I have to tell you about my experience when writing a short story. I've written it in three parts: The first being the introduction of the unlikable protagonist, ending in the sudden arrival of the antagonist. The third part picks up that plot line and leads to its (somewhat) resolution with an open end. So far, so good. What bugged me, was actually writing the middle part. It's the antagonist's introduction, however, contrary to the protagonist's, it's written as a flashback. And that's where it never felt quite right. Getting the point of the antagonist across properly required me to write a lot of exposition and drop the whole backstory right in front of the readers, because, well, it's a short story after all and we don't have all day. It felt rushed and cramped. But the problem can never be, that it is a short story, but the lack of talent on the author's part or the story just not being the right fit for the short story type in particular. Okay, let's consider, the story can work as a short story. In this case, we have to assume, "tell" is the only was to get that much exposition across, assuming, again, that it is necessary to convey the antagonist's motives. That leads us to the question of what distinguishes "tell" from "recount". You, depending on your linguistic affinity and ability to draw conclusions, might already have an idea. Actually, I came up with this distinction when editing a short story here on GA. There, it occurred to me, that the way, this necessary recollection of the character's past, that drives them in the present, can indeed be done in a good or a bad way. When you have to tell about the character's past, you probably don't want it to be all show, but it makes a difference whether you condense it to "He had done this, and then he had done that, before moving on to a third thing". So, what's the difference, then? It's in how a reader perceives it. It feels pretty matter-of-factly. It doesn't help to relate to the character, because it feels lifeless. Not, that recounting things is always wrong, but doing it at length can rob your story from its soul. Even though, it's a collection of past events, you have to slow it down a little and dive it. It doesn't have to be an all-interactive "show" with tons of dialogue (maybe a few quotes here and there), but it should describe a couple of events with a few more details that people are able to imagine them happening. It's a bit like the difference it makes whether your history teacher makes you remember mere year dates or focuses more on the events and their reasons.
  2. What would you say if I told you that writing is a lot like BDSM? You might tell me that you are not into that—but aren’t you? No, no, that wasn’t an invitation for sex. I wasn’t talking literally but literarily. Okay, let’s clear that up: It’s what we can do emotionally with writing. Usually described as an “emotional roller coaster”. You might say that kind of cruelty only exists in splatter and gore. But it might just be that you’re getting BDSM wrong. When practicing BDSM, you wouldn’t go around slapping random people on the street. This would most likely not result in arousal but in arrest because you are a psycho. BDSM, on the other hand is built on trust and a common goal—even though it’s reached through suffering. But it’s not suffering for the sake of suffering but for pleasure. And that’s what writing is about, too. Without the emotional bonding (not bondage), it would be needless suffering. We, as readers, surrender ourselves to the dominant author—let them play with us as they please. And if they are doing a good job, they keep us in a constant (or recurring) state of excitement, wanting for more. We don’t want them to stop. It’s not a surprise, books also have climaxes. And after a good climax, there’s the equivalent of post-coital tristesse. Just admit it: You like it, too! Yeah, one last thing: Just like kinks, it’s not for everyone but you’d be surprised for how many it is. Even Hitchcock already knew about the value of suspense. His theory is perfectly illustrated in the opening scene of Quentin Tarantino’s “Inglourious basterds” where SS-Standartenführer Hans Landa (known as “the Jew hunter”) interrogates French dairy farmer Perrier LaPadite who hides Jews under his floor—something we are made aware of. If we weren’t, the end of the scene, where Landa fires his gun through the cracks of the floor and kills all the people down there, wouldn’t have remotely the devastating effect it has on us. Even though, Landa’s whole bearing is intimidating, we hope, that the farmer might find a way to convince him that he doesn't have what the Nazi is looking for. As children, what we like and don’t like is quite simple (I know, parents would tell me, it’s not, given the fact that it doesn’t make sense, their child suddenly doesn’t like broccoli anymore), as long as it’s sweets we can eat. When we grow up, our taste buds get more sophisticated: We like coffee, different alcoholic beverages, black tea, dark chocolate. A bitter taste is something, most children cannot appreciate—yet. For a reason, in German we say, literally translated, “sour makes funny”.
  3. Zuri

    Part 2

    Hero’s journey In the last part, we talked about it seeming to be difficult to tell origin stories that inweave new concepts. Apparently, there’s something like laws of nature that apply to writing. Let’s have a look at the hero’s journey. Most of you should be familiar with this. In its beginning, the hero (or heroine) lives in their own world until something happens with an impact that changes the hero’s worldview and sets everything into motion—something that makes the hero and their mentor go on that journey. At first, protection and guidance from the mentor are needed by the hero because otherwise, the bad in the world had a too easy job with the hero, but ultimately, the mentor’s destiny is to die and therefore leave the hero on their own. At that point, the hero’s confidence is low, but now that things are already in motion, there’s no turning back. The next confrontation with the villain will be disastrous, but not shattering. Nonetheless, it will be enough to make the hero doubt themself, but that process is necessary to grow realistically. Eventually, this enables the hero to be victorious over the villain in the next encounter and save the world. Even though that is classic storytelling, we also find that method in science fiction stories like Star Wars, which has surprisingly many parallels to earth culture and mythology if you take a closer look. But as we already observed, that’s not a principle that only applies to ancient Greek literature anyway. Plato’s doctrine of forms of literature Speaking of Greek art and culture, Plato formulated his doctrine of forms like that: There’s a mindscape beyond our reality where all ideas exist as templates, and we could only catch an insufficient glimpse at it because we can’t fully grasp it. Therefore, we would emulate these ideas and approximate them, but never completely acquire something entirely equal to the very idea. Maybe it’s the same with the laws of literature or the stories we want to tell. Of course, there’s the hero’s journey, but to tell it in an enjoyable, entertaining, and refreshing manner is easier said than done. When you get what you want but not what you need I found the following conversation on Twitter in German, which translates to this: Who would call themself a “person in need of harmony”? Okay, here and there somebody raised their hand—that’s perfectly fine. When you read a story on Wattpad, chances are that you come across a story written by a beginner. When one writes for the first few times, it can happen, that, when one realized, one can create whole words by just writing, that one attempts to put the perfect imaginable scenario on paper (What if I were president? King? Incredibly rich? Immortal? What if nobody had to feel the pinch of hunger? etc.). Especially from science fiction, we know that in every hopeless bad (dystopia) there is good; and in every phantasmically good (utopia) there is bad. Eventually, we accomplish the opposite of what we wanted. If we are perfectly happy, we get used to it, and soon perfectly isn’t enough anymore. But what to do if there’s no more happiness to gain from anywhere? Or we begrudge the protagonist their happiness because they got it for free, and it, therefore, feels like happiness is worthless. Long story short: Living in the land of cockainage will turn out to be only half as good as it sounds at most at first thought. A recurring topic of discussions are the deaths of beloved characters. It’s said that one could only hate what one had loved before. There is a certain truth to this: We mourn the deaths of these fictional people, since authors brought them to life, since they were able to tell character arcs that were so authentic that we became fond of them as if they were real. Even though their death hurts and moves us, it proves one thing: The story is written outstandingly well. We should acknowledge that at that moment. Fight and battle scenes In German TV we have an action series called "Alarm for Cobra 11 – The Highway Police" which embodies perfectly what could be summed up as “spectacle”. I don’t particularly like that kind of show, since they primarily focus on mass crashes and explosions, but over 20 seasons seem to prove it right. That being said, I have to admit, that I’m not good at writing either fight or battle scenes. Especially with these, it shows if you stick with the rules no matter what: Figure A swipes at figure B with their sword. Figure B dodges and swipes at figure A with their mace. Figure A dodges […] Let’s have a look at a fun fact: Did you know that in multiple-choice quizzes, the correct answer is mostly C? Have you already created such a quiz on your own? If that’s the case, how did you manage not to have a recognizable pattern of which answer is the correct one? The next time when you create such a quiz, watch yourself if you now avoid making C the correct answer after what I told you. Another example is an anecdote from when I was still in school: In geography class, we got the homework to interview seventy people in a neighboring village in our spare time. I wasn’t really a rebel in school, but I couldn’t see the point of doing that. Long story short: I figured, I could just fake these interviews. It turned out to still be a huge amount of work. Besides the paperwork itself, I had to create characters over characters in my mind, and they had to be as diverse as possible. Even though I already wrote stories back then, I never had to create seventy characters for one story only, that stand up to scrutiny. Well, on the other hand, people like George Lucas envision a backstory for every single extra on set. There is a way to prove if books have been cooked or elections have been tampered with. It’s called Benford's law. It’s interesting that, according to Benford, people, who do these kinds of manipulations, tend to make certain kinds of errors, which leads to the creation of numeral series that look random at first sight but wouldn’t occur normally. Let’s get back to writing battle scenes. When I write such scenes, of course, I may show duels, but they do not mean much to the whole. Yet, they can be utilized for character building. But the overall battle has another meaning: Let’s assume, we have party A and party B. Party A should eventually win the battle. It would not be very entertaining if party A was superior to party B from the very beginning and throughout the whole battle. It would actually be pretty boring. One thing is clear: Tides have to be turned at least one time. Of course, it has to be believable. As I told you earlier on, fights are not about the slugfest but what you want to tell in context to the surrounding story. Why does party A win? What does that mean for party B?
  4. “I gave you good script,” Ma to Alan Cocktail Sticks, a play by Alan Bennett The writer Alan Bennett has been very open about how much he is inspired by real-life events. He has written plays and film scripts all inspired by real-life events; he has written several volumes of autobiographical essays, and every year or so he publishes extracts from his diary. I’ve seen and read all of them and enjoyed them so much. In his autobiographical play Cocktail Sticks, about his relationship with his parents, the character of Ma (based on his mother) says, “I gave you good script,” meaning he has used so many of the actual things she said in his writing. I cannot class myself in the same writing league as Alan Bennett, but I take so much inspiration from real-life events. That inspiration seems to fall into three different types. The first is when I want to write about events or attitudes that have made me angry or upset. This is when I use fiction to explore how I feel about a subject or when I want to write about attitudes in order to expose the negative/destructive nature of them. My short story I Always Knew is an example of this. It was the height of the Jimmy Savile scandal and I heard an elderly journalist on the radio saying that he’d always known about Savile’s crimes. My anger led me to explore that attitude, those people who are always “wise” after a tragedy, in this story. Secondly, I can find inspiration in news headlines and real events. Sometimes it a headline and a short news item that inspires my imagination. I don’t do anymore research, instead I let my imagination dwell on those sparse descriptions or even single event and then I fill out the events and with characters I’ve created. Without researching the events any further I can make sure I am not using the people and their tragedy for my own fiction, that my story is a complete work of fiction. A Family Christmas is an example of me using this type of inspiration. There was a mass shooting in America, on Christmas Eve, the year before I wrote this story. I learnt no more about that tragedy but my imagination filled in the blanks and I created a story that explored a theme that leapt out at me from this tragedy. I don’t always search out stories of death and tragedy, all kinds of things in the media can set my imagination off running. I read an interview with the actor Russell Tovey where he said a throwaway comment, but that comment set my imagination off. The result was the story That One Big Role. I have also been researching historical events for a series of stories. These take a lot more research and less of my imagination filling in the blanks, though some of that is still needed. With these stories I want to examine a historical event from a fictional character’s point of view, find the human story inside the facts. These stories do take a lot of work, but I don’t want to stop writing them, the research is fascinating. The Trial of the Century is the first one in this style I wrote. Thirdly, I find inspiration from my own life. It can either be just one small factor that I then spin off into a whole story, or else it can form a larger part of a story, or else I fictionalise something that happened to me as a way to explore what and why that thing happened. Boxing Day 1975 is a short story of mine that was inspired by one event from my life. When I was a young child, on Boxing Day, together with my family I watched the big film on television that evening, One Million Years BC. That was the only part I took into the story, it is certainly not based on my own family but I do vividly remember how my family all sat down together to watch the same television film. I met my first boyfriend in 1987 but our relationship did not last. Our break-up was different, difficult and not that conventional. I used that break-up scene, almost word-for-word from real life, as the opening scene of my story Out of the Valley. I used this story to explore obsessive love and not being able to let go of an ex-lover, none of which was my reaction to the end of that relationship, though this story did go through many rewrites over the years with the wish-fulfilment ending being quickly dropped. Then there are those real-life encounters that play on my mind and imagination and form the bases of some of my stories. Jonathan Roven Is Lost (a story in my collection Case Studies in Modern Life) is a story that started off in that way. Through my job, I saw the effect dementia has on the partners of those people with it. My blog here gives a much fuller picture of how that story was created. For me, there isn’t just one way that I find inspiration, but I guess that is the same for so for many writers, but using inspiration and facts from real life is very important to me, I want my stories to have that taste of authenticity. I don’t use overheard dialog in my writing, like many writers do, because the few times I’ve heard anything decent I’ve forgotten the actual words by the time I get home. But I do use real people in my writing or people’s attitudes and beliefs. I don’t use direct copies of people; I don’t feel comfortable if readers can easily identify the person who was the inspiration for a character. So often I combine different things from different people—the attitude from one person, the clothes style from another and the physical appearance from another. But what really fascinates me are people’s attitudes and beliefs and how they affect their lives and how people’s personalities react in different situations. For me, I find inspiration in so many different ways, so many different things can spark and inspire my imagination, but in the end it is my imagination that forms the story from whatever the inspiration is, though I always work to create authenticity in my fiction. I hope my stories bear that out. I do remember one of the classic things my mother said, though I have never found the right story to use it in. I was in my early teens and had just come home from school one afternoon and my mother was unpacking her shopping. “I won’t buy anymore lemonade, all you lot ever do is drink it,” my mother said. “What should we do with it, wash in it?” I said. “You know what I mean,” she told me. And I did. Happy reading Drew
  5. Jonathan Roven is Lost is a story I am proud of. It concerns a subject that I have rarely seen written about, namely how a gay couple manages when one of them develops Alzheimer’s Disease. I’m also proud of the journey this story has taken. Originally, it was just 900 words long, with a different ending. It was written as a flash fiction story (stories under 1,000-words long) to a prompt of Losing Your Lover. So often do I find a left-field response to subjects. It was first published on the Gay Flash Fiction website. Unfortunately, it has been deleted from that site since then, but other stories of mine are still available there. The original version can be found here. As always, I had that rush of excitement whenever I have something published, the excitement of knowing I am communicating with people I’ll never meet. Then something strange happened. The site’s editor emailed me because he had received a complaint. An American lawyer, called Jonathan Roven, had demanded that my story be taken down or changed. It seemed the real-life Jonathan Roven didn’t like having a fictional character named after him or sharing his name, or he didn’t like my character called Jonathan Roven, or all three. The editor wasn’t happy; he argued that there are probably lots of real-life Mr Darcys out there, and they aren’t writing to Jane Austen’s estate, demanding her character’s name is changed. I did a Google search on fictional characters with real people’s names, and I also looked up Jonathan Roven. The first page of links was all to the same American lawyer, except for a link to my story, which was surprising and interesting. My other Google search returned some interesting results. I’ve included the links below. Under American law, it seems, calling a fictional character by the same name as a real person alone is not libel. Jonathan Roven would have had to prove that the fictional character was based on him, with more similarities than just names, and that the fictional character had harmed his character and/or reputation. In my story, the fictional character is a 60-year-old gay man with Alzheimer’s Disease; I don’t even name his profession. Also, in America, winning a libel case where you say a fictional character libelled you seems to be very difficult. Now, I’m a nurse and not a lawyer, and this is just what I learnt from an online search. When I first created the character, he was to have been called Jonathan Raven, but I made a typo and called him Jonathan Roven, which I liked the sound of, so it stayed. I’m British, and the Gay Flash Fiction website isn’t run for profit; it’s much more a labour of love. Neither of us could afford to fight a court case, so we quickly agreed to change the title character’s name. Therefore, we changed it to Jonathan Raven is Lost, well in the version on the Gay Flash Fiction website anyway. But it left a sour taste in my mouth and created an unpleasant memory. What had so upset the man that he wanted my story changed or removed? Was it because the character who shared his name was gay and/or had Alzheimer’s Disease (and I’m not sure which one it would be), or was it because he’d lost the top billing of having all his results on the first page of a Google search? I’ve since posted the original version of the story, under its original title, on my old blog and on the GA website, where it can still be read, and I’ve heard nothing from the real Jonathan Roven. In these locations, I have no intention of changing the title or the story or the character’s name. When I was selecting stories for my published collection Case Studies in Modern Life, I naturally chose Jonathan Roven is Lost. It is such a good example of my writing, but it is also about a subject I feel strongly about. Many of the patients I nurse in my job have Alzheimer’s Disease, and I have seen what it does to lives and relationships. Like many of the stories in this collection, I workshopped it at my Writer’s Group. I received amazing feedback, and people advised me to open the story up because there was more to tell. I returned to it and started to re-shape it. The rewrites took the story from 800 to 11,000-words long, and as I rewrote it, so much more of the story came out. I introduced new characters; the narrator’s best friend, their neighbour, Jonathan’s sister, and his social worker, plus a nurse called Lilly. So much of the plot expanded, and I found there was so much more to tell. Other writers talk about stories and characters taking on “a life of their own”. I’ve never really experienced that. I’m a great planner of stories, and I always know where my stories are going. As I re-wrote this story, I found myself thinking about it more and more, planning it out in my mind. I found there was so much more to write, so much more of these characters’ stories to tell. I am also proud that I was able to write a story about Alzheimer’s Disease from an original perspective and also realistically look at how to manage if your partner does develop it. This story isn’t a road map for how to manage life with a partner with Alzheimer’s Disease, but it does provide advice from my experience. I also have Steve, one of the other members of my writer’s group, Newham Writers Workshop, to thank for his suggestion about a change to the story’s ending. His suggestion created a much more poignant ending to the story, highlighting the emotional cost Jonathan Roven’s Alzheimer’s Disease has taken on his partner. This story was originally written as a flash fiction story about losing a lover but in an unusual way. Since then, it has grown into much more. It is now about two men’s tragic journey and is very typical of the subjects I write about. The inspiration for this story occurred back in the late 1990s. I was working in my first District Nursing job and looking after an elderly couple. She had severe dementia, and he was her main carer, but he was also her second husband. Due to her dementia, she had forgotten his name and called him by the name of her first husband. The pain on his face every time she did this was heart breaking. I have never forgotten his expression, though he carried on caring for her. Happy reading. Drew When Fiction & Reality Collide Could I Be Liable for Libel in Fiction? “Libel in general is when somebody claims that a statement of fact made about him or her harmed his or his character” Law & Order' Faces Libel Suit A Writer's Guide to Defamation and Invasion of Privacy Defamation in Fiction—What’s in a Name?
  6. Writing is a very solitary activity; we sit there on our own, writing away on our computer or laptop, or even doing it “old school” via paper and pen, pouring out our stories and preserving our characters there in the written word. But how do we know that what we are writing is any good? We can ask our family and loved ones, but will they give us the feedback we need? They are our loved ones and so often they want the best for us and may not give us the feedback we require, or they may not be able to handle what we are writing about, especially if it doesn’t fit their image of us. As a teenager I wrote poetry, like so many teenagers. I wrote a poem about loneliness. It was bitter, angry and dark. “Nothing kills you faster than loneliness,” was its last line. My mother read the poem and said it was “Nice.” As writers we can get so absorbed in our own writing, get so far into our characters’ heads that we can miss the obvious. We may have failed to introduce our characters, not given them a distinctive enough voice; we may have left huge plot holes; we may have overused one particular word literally. Because we are so close to our writing, we can’t see these mistakes. We also need to know that our writing is readable and engaging, and that cannot always be achieved by rereading on our own. Good and honest feedback will always make our writing better. Writers’ groups have provided me with this; they have been a wonderful source of feedback and support. I’ve learnt so much just from meeting with other members. The first writers’ group I went to was when I was eighteen. The Old Swan Writers were based in the Old Swan district of Liverpool and it was one long bus ride away from my then home. Those bus rides gave me plenty of time to think and read. But that writers’ group told me and showed me I could write. This group of adults showed me I could create a story and characters, plot it out and write it down on paper. It was an amazing revelation. There I received feedback without any agenda. They weren’t pulling me down because they thought I was getting above myself by wanting to be a writer or else telling me polite things because that was what they thought I wanted to hear, both of which had happened before. (Unfortunately, after an extensive Google search, I cannot find any mention of the Old Swan Writers. Like all good things, they seem to have ended) When I moved to London, I stopped attending any writers’ group, not because London is short of them but because I led a very gypsy lifestyle in those early years. I changed jobs frequently and I often moved home. I only really started to settle down when I started my nurse training, and that didn’t leave me much time to write anything that wasn’t related to my studies. I seriously came back to writing after the millennium, when I started to find many avenues for my writing, not just fiction. It was also when I reconnected with a writers’ group, first online and then later in person. I’m now a member of my local writers’ group, Newham Writers Workshop, and they have been so helpful. I’ve had some very helpful feedback on my writing, how my plots and characters are working, how readable my writing is, how my descriptions work, how they paint a picture for the reader. I have also learnt so much about the craft of writing, subjects like “head-hopping”, “filter words”, distance and intimate view points and about using the “unreliable narrator”. I learnt about self-publishing from my writers’ group. But giving feedback to other writers has also helped me. We have a policy of always giving feedback that supports the writer in what they want to write. So there is no saying, “I don’t like this,” neither can you just say, “I liked this.” You have to explain why, what makes this a good piece of writing, where the writer could improve it, what does not work but why it does not work. I have also been exposed to some amazing writing there, listening to/reading other writers’ work has opened my eyes to how you can do things differently and stylistically. It has also shown me what my own personal style is; I like to write from a very intimate point of view of my characters, to get under their skin. The vast majority of my stories in Case Studies in Modern Life have benefited from the feedback from my writers’ group, in some cases I have completely rewritten them after getting some really thought-provoking feedback. My writers’ group has also shown me how inclusive my writing is. The previous two writers’ groups I joined (one online and one in person) were both LGBT groups. I wanted the support of other LGBT writers, it was a safe place and a safe idea, but good things can come to an end and both these groups closed for different reasons. I’m now a member of my local writers’ group and this is an open group. I’m the only openly gay man there and yet that has never been an issue. Now I am writing about gay issues and themes; the other writers there have understood my writing and have seen what I want to write about. It has shown me that my writing has a wide appeal and that is amazing and very reassuring. Newham Writers Workshop has been the last cog, though a very big one, in the machine that encouraged me to publish my collection of stories, and I’m very grateful for this. And then there is the social element. After each meeting, when meeting face-to-face, most of us go to a local pub for a drink. Talking with other writers about writing in general, or even life in general, is a breath of fresh air. It takes the solitude out of it all. And I’ve made some good friends there from very different backgrounds. It is nice to get out of my comfort zone. I would encourage any writer to join a writers’ group; no matter what your experience or level of writing, you can only benefit from good and honest feedback. Drew Case Studies in Modern Life (On Amazon) Case Studies in Modern Life (On Smashwords)
  7. Zuri

    Part 3

    Authenticity vs everyday life There are two camps of literature consumers: Those who practice escapism (fantasy and science fiction to the rescue) and those who prefer stories that seek a high order of reality and authenticity: Feelings—good ones as well as bad ones—, situations you can identify with, which you even already might have experienced. In the early days of filmmaking, there have been ideas now and then, that had the potential to be revolutionary. The idea, I want to talk about in this section, came actually into fashion in the last decades—but not quite the way it was intended. I’m talking about reality TV. I’m not sure, if you can therefore actually consider him the father of reality TV, since reality was important to him—funnily, that was the reason, his concept was a flop. But let’s not put the cart before the horse: He wanted to follow a married couple around for 24 hours a day—unscripted, uncut, uncensored. But that turned out to be a little overkill: People felt bored watching it, even though in theory that sounded like an honest concept and the two people unintentionally provided a surprise moment—their son came out as gay. Yet, well-intentioned is the opposite of good. The project failed. Even though reality TV strives for the opposite extreme today, it does what we talked about in the previous chapter: Deliver, captivate, include—and everything on command. But that doesn’t have to mean that the product is the best that is the most far-fetched. Reality TV is called “scripted reality” for a reason—essentially, it’s closer to a motion picture than to actual reality. They have a script, are arranged by a director to ensure, we hang on the character’s every word, and cut by an editor so that we don’t have time to catch our breaths. But is that wrong? Do we feel like somebody lied to us? No, of course not. The dose makes the poison—the trick is to find the right balance. The movie is worse than the novel—that is the law Just like they say, the movie adaption is doomed to be worse than the novel it’s based on, you could assume, that the attempt to capture reality in a motion picture is destined to have the same desolate destiny. The problem with that assumption is, to think, the task was to copy reality in every possible aspect. Of course, that endeavor would most certainly fail. But the medium “movie” has its own way to express themself—just like a novel has theirs. Let’s imagine, you were asked to adapt this scene from a novel to a movie: We see that this text describes plenty of things before there is action, let alone words spoken. Of course, I could try to emulate the gaze with the camera and follow it by looking at furniture and clothing, but while this seems quite natural in the book, a viewer of the movie would assume, these things had a special meaning that will have significant importance later on. For the movie, I decided to place the children opposite their parents on the other side of the table, which is closer to the wall. Why? Well, in the novel, there is no indication of where each family member sits at the table. While in the novel, there is kind of a Schrödinger’s cat situation (everybody sits everywhere and nowhere at the same time; in quantum physics that is called a superposition), actors inevitably need a specific place to sit in. And so a director would make a virtue of necessity and do subtle storytelling with the characters' placements. We have the indication from the original text that the children sometimes fear their parents, and transformed that into an image because it wouldn’t have been possible to adapt that line par for par. The children sit with their backs to the wall and on the other side of the table are their parents, cohesively. In comparison to explicitly looking at furniture and clothing, this detail is not that pushy and not spelled out for the viewer so that the viewer is aware of that but more subconsciously. In the novel, this scene takes several seconds to read; in the movie adaption, it’s not more than a blink of an eye. The thing about relevance When the mother returns home from work, it takes her forty minutes. That’s inevitable. During a movie or novel, we wouldn’t always explicitly show her driving home unless something interesting or important happens while she’s underway. If we omit her way home, it’s called “time compression” (see story time vs plot time vs screen time). In the reality TV documentary, I talked about two sections earlier, they would have shown us all her way home, leaving nothing unseen and us bored. Sure, in reality, there is no shortcut to this. We have to accompany ourselves on our way home. But even though, we might like stories to be realistic, this is most certainly not what we want to see. We still want to be entertained. It’s enough to see her heading home and arriving. We can imagine the rest. In a story, I wrote, I provided the protagonist with a cute yellow lab—cool, isn’t it? Well, so it might feel for you readers. Fair enough, maybe not even for you, since you might have noticed that it is nice to have a dog but considerably less appealing to see the protagonist walk the dog in almost every scene just like in Groundhog Day. The dog became a burden—and it wasn’t even his fault. That’s how pets might feel when they were brought home from an animal shelter and after the initial excitement, nobody wants to take care of them anymore, so they are eventually returned to the shelter. I realized that I’m not fit to be a literary pet owner. One or two nice scenes with a dog—be my guest—but besides that, I’m just not creative enough in this aspect to keep the dog around while at the same time finding interesting scenes with him. Initially, I didn’t want to tell a story specifically with a dog, but I mean, it's not like it hurts anyone, does it? Spirits that I've summoned … The evil protagonist Who does not know it? In movies like James Bond, viewers want the hero to win; when we, on the other hand, watch shows like How to sell drugs online (fast), we usually want the bad people (drug dealers) to win. So one could argue, it’s less a matter of morals but a matter of who’s the protagonist. Why is that? Well, the protagonist is naturally the character we spend the most time with for the duration of the story and get the best insight into the inner workings of their mind. Many villains are provided with a backstory that explains their actions and maybe even rectifies them. Often times that’s enough to make us hope for the villain to eventually succeed. And who knows, we might get a sequel then. Sure, there are shows like “Money Heist”, where the heroes (the police) act quite stupidly or are prone to corruption and/or infiltration by a third party. Also, their credo “The end justifies the means“ might actually enable them to enforce law and order, but might conflict with our attitude to morality. Even in movies like “Joker” where the protagonist is actually a homicidal maniac who would kill us without turning a hair, we consider him “cool” since we are not his target (see NIMBY). Then, there is the show iZombie, where the seemingly evil protagonist (a zombie) is only considered evil by society. Would we do it any differently? I had an interesting conversation with my flatmate lately. Let’s imagine a man whose children had been kidnapped. Police start looking for them, arrests a subject, and release it after some interrogation. Impuissance washes over the father. “Why doesn’t the police do anything!?” he keeps asking himself. Of course, the police do everything in their power and what they are allowed by law to find the children. On the spur of the moment, the father ambushes the subject, handcuffs, gags, imprisons, and tortures it, to prize the information where the children are out of the subject. Classy thriller plot. Sure, we side with the father. The police are only doing their job, but in this case, we are okay with lynch law. Because at this moment, we are the father. In Germany, we had a case like that (see The murder of Jakob von Metzler). What would we say if the subject turned out to be innocent? Do we still side with the father, who just broke multiple bones in the other man’s body? Or how would we react if the father realized that he’s too late and because he can’t bear the loss, he wants to fire an atom bomb, to kill all humankind? I observed that it is everything but easy to not identify with the protagonist per se because we see the story from their perspective and so their perspective becomes our perspective. That’s what they are made for: We might question their actions, but we offer a shoulder to cry on when needed. Just like good friends. Or like court-appointed legal defenders represent a remorseless, dangerous criminal. Like partners in toxic relationships. That’s why I once wrote a short story: Because I wondered if it was possible that readers identify more with the antagonist than with the protagonist. I think this is only possible if the reader isn’t able to relate on any level. Only when they push us actively away. See also What is an Antagonist — 7 Types and How They Work Here’s Why Writing A Screenplay Is Harder Than Writing A Novel - Dr. Ken Atchity
  8. Zuri

    Intro

    I originally wrote this blog post in German for another community, but I felt like I give it a try to translate and share it with you folks. This is the first post of a now three series which I’m intending to expand since now and then, I get new ideas or encounter other cases when writing or editing stories. I'm sorry if it appears to be a bit random, but I wrote it as the ideas came to my mind. Make sure, to also check out GayAuthor's writing resources! I'm sorry if the intro is a little short, but the subsequent parts will be considerably longer and more in detail. Grandparent scam/assets of a Nigerian prince Don’t just pull rabbits out of the hat when you need them. If there was given no hint beforehand whatsoever, it may be convenient, but feel like cheating at the same time. It’s better to lay out the bait a few scenes before. The Hunt For Red Herring A story, you know the ending when you read the first page, is rightfully considered dull by most readers. That’s why especially whodunit-type stories use distractions, deceptions, and plot twists to fire full blast. Just like a magician, you are not just telling facts but making them entertaining, and let the readers delve into fictional worlds. One common mistake is to create a deceptive plot line that doesn’t seem to serve another purpose than the deception itself. Readers will often times feel dissatisfied by that. More information: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47ntBElzaWk&list=PLG2IXYJ6H-fuZzLunP0fSUNrZYAm8mUtK&index=17&t=55s Truism alarm Why so precise? Quite unlikely in reality. If being that precise doesn’t serve the story in any way or has no specific reason, scratch it. A lot of things are dependent on a lot of factors. Our daily lives rarely work dead on time each and every day without any incidents. That kind of process fits an evil mastermind more than an average protagonist who isn’t a Mary Sue. Show, don't tell Better: Good vintage has to stock for quite some time … and sometimes, it gets forgotten in the vine cellar. Or simpler: When I want to harvest vegetables or corn, I have to put seeds in the ground and wait in the first place before the seed yields fruits. It’s just not fast food! Two pieces of information, which trigger an epiphany or a change of mind, shouldn’t be introduced within the same scene. That makes it more authentic, more surprising. Many plot twists are planned well in advance. Some even date back to the very first chapter and don’t come into play before the climax. This is essentially called "Chekhov's Gun" (by StudioBinder as seen in "How Knives Out Perfects"). Family tree No shit, Sherlock! I would have never guessed that both had the same family name, since they are related. Of course, there are exceptions but in these cases, mentioning it makes sense. You should refrain from attributing complex and implausible family trees to your character if that is not explicitly needed, or you want them to make themselves a fool. Closing words Here are some more tips on Writing with Jenna Moreci: BEST AND WORST WRITING TIPS Also, the On writing playlist by Hello Future Me These are the channels with the most videos in my storytelling playlist See also: "How To Write A Twist Ending" with John Gray by Film Courage on YouTube
  9. Zuri

    Part 1

    When writing, there are rules based on the experiences of countless authors from several literary periods on one hand and the expectations of readers that are somewhat trained in what stories look like. While it’s never bad advice to play along, for the most part, good writing oftentimes resorts to some unusual surprises. That’s where stories might shine. Don’t always tell the same old story and dare to break some rules https://gayauthors.org/story/sammy-blue/gemini/ is partly a very classic story—just like ”The Prince and the Pauper” or “Lottie and Lisa“. Seen one, seen 'em all? My answer to this was: It doesn’t matter if the story has already been told but if you’re capable of telling it again. The probability that a story has already been told in a certain way, in fact, isn’t that low. Many cultures know these stories—some of them were inspired by one another; some seemed to have evolved independently. How is that possible? (see "Is it unoriginal to write about dragons?") To answer that question, I’d like to digress a bit and start by asking how I can be certain that the story, I’m writing, is a qualitative one. I’d say, two important components are rules and laws. Do I have to know all of these? Certainly not. But it might help. Every author has a different writing procedure. Some prefer to plan ahead for the most part before they start writing; others tend to write intuitively and might come to the same conclusion: That they are satisfied with their writing. So they avoided rules altogether? I don’t think so. Would they reverse engineer their work, they’d realize they actually did apply these principles, but intuitively. But how can you apply principles of a craft without knowing them? Well, the answer is rather easy: Even if a craft wrote down these principles, they didn’t lay them down in the first place. The craft just did the same thing, the author did: Reverse engineering. These principles are universal—natural laws, if you will. Because they are in all of us. Because we want to be entertained. Surprised. Astonished. But also scared. To be left in the limbo. We authors react to that needs. So that would mean, you only have to obey these rules to have a perfect story, right? Of course, that’s nonsense. Especially in that case, a story feels staged or even artificial to us—and not unique at all. That reminds me of the German or English lessons I had in school: You’re taught dos and don'ts which work in theory (e.g. when writing term papers or the like) but not in the field (e.g. everyday verbal communication). The best example is the double negative: If I would form grammatically correct sentences in that case, that’d cause a lot of confusion. Not to mention the creative use of language in poetry. You see: If obeying to these rules means turning a blind eye on reality, it might cause more harm than good. Returning to the initial question, does that mean, that all stories are already told anyway, so it’s pointless to attempt to tell something new? That isn’t entirely true, either, as we already observed. In the following parts, I want to explain to you my thoughts and conclusions I had when writing stories and discussing them, which led me to dive into how other authors write and did write, and which key levers to adjust to write and improve good stories.
  10. So I found this youtube channel that has some pretty funny videos about writing tropes. I'm not an author but it's still interesting to watch and has some pretty decent advice for aspiring authors. Although the advice is given in a very sarcastic, yet funny, manner.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Our Privacy Policy can be found here: Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..