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Showing posts from April, 2017

Celebrate the Small Things

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Celebrate the Small Things is a weekly bloghop now hosted by Lexa Cain. The idea is to post anything you want to celebrate from the last week, no matter how small.

Here's what I'm celebrating this week:
- So unfortunately, as some of you may have noticed, I've given up on the A to Z challenge. I really wanted to see it through to the end this year, but it just wasn't to be. I was away for a long weekend a couple of weeks ago, and then of course there was Easter, so I just ran out of time. Once again, I gave myself far too much to do! I'm celebrating this because it was the right decision; next year I will plan all of my posts in advance!
- I put up a piece of flash fiction for this month's WEP challenge, and I got some really good comments back from it, which is great because I struggled with the prompt this time. If you want to read it, click here (it's really short!).

WEP - April, Love and Peace

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OK, so I've really struggled with this theme. It's very much a "happy" theme, and I'm not a "happy" writer - I'm trying not to think too much about what this means about me! Anyway, I almost gave up, but I was determined to put something up, so here it is.


Peace and Love
If you could give your life to create peace, would you do it?

I look at my friends around me. He was standing to my right, the usual calm, almost bored expression on his face. I was one of the only ones who could see through the mask. He knew we wouldn’t make it through this, and yet he stayed by my side, ready to fight to the death. She was on my other side, as always, that fierce look on her face. She never did know when to back down, just like me. I suppose we were a good match.

I guess I’ll never find out for sure.

I step forward, towards the approaching army. The leader sees my movement, and smiles, curious. He’s not worried.

He should be.

I take another step forward. My fr…

H is for Heartache

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.


H is for Heartache

My favourite kind of story is one that makes you really feel. When you're reading a novel, and you're so into the story that you feel like you're right there alongside the characters, experiencing their fear, their pain, their happiness.

The expression I use is a story that hurts my heart, because that's how I feel; my heart aches for these characters and the struggles that they are going through. I'm so invested in the story and the characters that when they are in pain, so am I. When they're happy, I'm happy.

This is my goal as a writer; to make my readers experience this. There's nothing like a story that stays with you long after you've…

G is for Goals

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.


G is for Goals

All of your characters need at least one goal to aim towards during the course of the story. This will add depth to the character, and make them more relatable. Goals provide motivation for your characters, and obstacles that get in the way of your characters achieving that goal provide tension to the story. If your character doesn't have a goal, they have nothing to motivate them throughout the story.

The goal is likely to change throughout the course of the story, which is a good thing; your character should be a completely different person by the end of the story, so of course they will want different things. Of course, they might achieve their goal, but they also might re…

F is for Flaws

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.


F is for Flaws
I think it's hugely important to give all of your characters flaws; it helps the reader to relate to them, and therefore care about them more.
Think about it; nobody is perfect. Everybody has personality traits, fears and habits that hold them back, and your characters are no different. Who wants to read a book about someone who does the right thing all the time, with no consequences for their actions? That would be boring, and really unrealistic. 
Your character's flaws should prevent them from reaching their goal; this creates an internal conflict for the character. They are basically stopping themselves from getting what they want. It also creates tension in your story…

E is for Evil

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.

E is for Evil
Good vs Evil is one of the most classic themes for stories. However, it's not always that black and white. The best stories are the ones that blur the lines; where the "good" guys have a bad side, or the villain of the story actually has a pretty good reason for doing the "evil" things that they're doing. 
All stories need to have one side that the reader can root for, and another side that the reader can root against. If you can blur the lines between the two, it gives the story so much more depth. I think stories where the good guys are perfect are boring, because nobody is perfect; it's just not realistic. 
The "Evil" guys in your story…

IWSG - April

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I've got a few insecurities this month, mostly because I've got so much going on. There's the planning for the novel idea I had a few weeks ago, planning for the story I need to write for the WEP Challenge, and then the A to Z Challenge, which I'm determined to take part in until the end this year.

Mostly my insecurities come down to the same thing they always do; time management! I know I can get all of these things done if I prioritise properly and manage my time well (which at the moment I'm not doing!)

However, I'm determined to complete all of these things, so I will start to manage my time better.


Do you have any insecurities this month?

D is for Darkness

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.

D is for Darkness
Now, this isn't something that is needed to create a good story; it's just something that I like to see in the stories that I read/watch. I'm really not one for soppy stories. You know the type; all rainbows and sunshine, where the characters all skip through life and get their super happy endings with barely any struggle.
Don't get me wrong; I do like my character's to get a happy ending (although I am also a fan of the bittersweet ending), but I'd rather they had to really fight for it. The best kind of character is one who's faced darkness, and beat it. 
My favourite stories are the ones that are so dark, you honestly have no idea how everything …

C is for Conflict

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.

C is for Conflict
Another thing that is absolutely essential in storytelling is conflict; without it, a story is boring. It has no teeth. Conflict is basically anything that stops a character from getting what they want, and this, as the author, is our goal. If you're writing a story and your character gets everything they want without having to work for it, you've got no conflict. 
Conflict keeps the reader hooked; they'll keep reading, wondering if the characters will ever get what they want, what will happen if they do, and which characters will triumph and which will fail. 
It can come in many forms; the main kind of conflict you'll have will probably be between your protago…

B is for Backstory

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.

B is for Backstory
Backstory is hugely important to every story; it gives your characters and your world depth. If they don't have backstory then they're just empty shells; they don't have any motivation, no reason for doing what they're doing. 
Now, I'm not saying that you need to include all of the backstory right from the beginning. In fact, I would advise against this; it would just lead to a huge info dump, which would stall the Action (which I talked about in the previous post) and bore the reader. 
It is a good idea, however, to be aware of the backstory before you start writing. You need to know what is motivating your character, why your world is how it is. The more…

A is for Action

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My theme for the A to Z challenge this year, is Storytelling. I'll be writing posts on what I think you need to create a good story; the posts will vary from basics that all writers use in their stories, to themes/tropes that I love to see in stories that I read, and that I use when I write.



A is for Action

No good story exists without some kind of action taking place. Action keeps the plot moving; if there's no action, there's no story.

There are small actions, like a conversation between characters that moves the story from one scene to the next, and then there are the bigger actions, like the inciting incident, that pushes the story into its next stage.

Basically, if there's no action in your story, the reader will get bored. Every single scene in a story needs to move the plot on in some way; if it doesn't, it needs to be cut.

The action needs to start right on the first page; you need to hook your reader straight away, throw them straight into the action so th…