Showing posts from September, 2017

Why Write Poetry?

If you normally write fiction, poetry may or may not be something you think much about. Maybe you’re so absorbed in mapping out your story-world, developing your characters, and fine-tuning your plot that you feel like writing poetry would be a distraction. After all, novel-writing is hard work, and takes focus. Why should you divert your creative energy into trying poetry? I’ll admit now that I’ve written poetry for longer than I’ve written fiction. I don’t get absorbed in poetry-writing like I do with my novels. In fact, though I do consider myself a poet, I really don’t write poetry as often as I would like. The inspiration comes randomly and typically out of nowhere. But every time I find myself writing a poem, I can feel that I’m doing something constructive—not only for my growth as a poet, but for my fiction-writing as well. Writing and reading poetry changes how you handle writing prose. I’m confident about that. Poetry stretches your descriptive power, and makes

20 Prying Questions for Your Characters

If you’ve done a lot of character questionnaires before, you probably know where your main character was born, the names and ages of their siblings, their favorite food, their favorite color…those things you timidly ask your new pen-pal in the first letter. But here’s the thing: there’s absolutely no reason to be shy with your characters. All those highly personal questions you would never ask a real person in an interview—those are the things you really need to know. You could think up a lot of these prying questions, and I would advise you to think of some that would be particularly relevant to your character in their particular story. But to start you off, here’s a list of twenty deep questions to flesh out your characters. 1. How is your relationship with God? 2. Have you ever been in love? 3. Did you have a good childhood? 4. How is your relationship with your parents? 5. What makes you angry? 6. Are you comfortable with emotions? 7. What about you do

5 Elements of a Fandom-Enabled Story

        We all want to be the author of a story that triggers the explosion of a new fandom. We want our readers to be as excited to read our story as we are to write it. We want to inspire fan-artists to bring our scenes to life in their art. We want to inspire fan-fiction writers to use our characters and settings to sharpen their own skills. There’s nothing quite like seeing a truly satisfied fan-base spring up around a great story. But what makes that happen? Okay, I’m not going to pretend I understand the magic and mystery of fandoms. I have no idea why fangirls and fanboys do what they do-- OTP’s and headcanons and AU’s and all that—but when I look at the stories that spark these great fandoms, there are elements they all have. I’ve isolated five for the sake of this post. I’m sure there are other things, but let’s look at these five for now: 1. Vivid Characters Often really vivid. In fact, I would almost recommend pushing it a little. Lean into you