#computerdoctor
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Reblogged from fictionwritingtips  2,262 notes

Ways to Weaken Your Story from the Beginning

fictionwritingtips:

The beginning of your novel is super important and it shouldn’t be taken lightly. Planning out the first few chapters of your novel can be difficult, so I’ve come up with a list of things you should try to avoid. For the most part, pulling from this list will weaken your story. I know there are always exceptions, but I can almost guarantee you many publishers and agents are tired of seeing the same plot devices used over and over again.

So, here are a few ways to automatically weaken your story from the first few sentences:

Start with a long description of your character.

Sure, it helps your readers to have an image of your main character in their minds, BUT you don’t need to put the full description in the first paragraph. There might be a few things you want to mention, but try not to go beyond that until the opportunity presents itself. A full report is not necessary and it will drag your writing down from the beginning. Get creative with how you introduce your character and their appearance. What’s important? What do your readers absolutely need to know? Go with that.

Start with a dream.

I know this does work occasionally, but it happens so often I’m sure most people are sick of it. Starting your novel with a dream is no longer very creative and your readers will just want you to get to the point. However, if you do start with a dream make sure it ties the story together in some way and it’s not just boring story filler.

OR

Start with your character waking up.

This happens so often it’s crazy. It’s alright to begin your novel with something other than your character starting their day. In fact, it’s more exciting when it does. We don’t need to see what they do in the morning or read about them staring at their reflection in the mirror as they get ready for the day. You can start your novel where you want, so do something interesting.

Start with the weather.

Unless your story directly relates to the weather, please try to open your novel with something else. No one really cares about the weather that much, unless it’s some sort of apocalyptic awesome weather, so avoid it where you can.

Start with character emotions/thoughts.

“Where am I?” Amy thought. This is pretty boring. So is, “Amy was sad.” You’re already starting off your novel by telling your readers what your main character is thinking. We want to see it and experience it ourselves. You want to give your readers something to picture. The first sentence of your novel should be exciting and draw your readers in.

-Kris Noel

Reblogged from alpha-beta-gamer  31,833 notes

alpha-beta-gamer:

Storium is an online storytelling game that allows players to create a story through a series of scenes, reacting to obstacles and people as you come across them.  It’s played with 3 people, with one person playing as the Narrator, and the other 2 playing as the characters.  

The Narrator chooses the world that the story is set in (with choices such as ‘occult pop horror’, ‘medical drama’ and ‘cyberpunk’), then starts each scene, using cards to give the players challenges to overcome.  The players will then try to overcome these challenges as they see fit, progressing the story  in fun and interesting ways.

There are a few more rules, but it’s remarkably easy to pick up and is only limited by your imagination.  Storium is a fun and fluid way of storytelling, with players reacting to each other and no-one being fully in control, it can lead to some VERY interesting stories.  

Our attempt was an occult pop horror called ‘The Badgers of Doom’, they’re black, they’re white, and they bite!  Coming soon to cinemas near you!

Sign up for the Alpha

Reblogged from deornia  58,804 notes

why is it always the woman who has to see past the beast in the man? why does she always have to clean his wounds, even after he has damaged her beyond repair? why is it always the man who is worthy of forgiveness for being a monster?
I want to see the beast in the beauty.
the half smile, half snarl. the unapologetic anger. I would like to see the man forgive the monster. to see her, blood and all, and love her anyway. By

beauty and the beast | Caitlyn S. (via yasodhara)

The book I am writing is literally this. I love waking up to validation!

(via deornia)

Reblogged from fictionwritingtips  1,138 notes

How to Write an Engaging First Chapter

fictionwritingtips:

I probably get this question every day, so I think it’s about time I did a post on it. Many writers are concerned with writing their first chapters and they have trouble figuring out what they should include and what they should leave out until later.

When you’re submitting a manuscript in order to get an agent or find a publisher, it’s important that you hook them from the opening paragraph. A lot of agents have admitted that sometimes they ONLY read the first few sentences and if they’re not intrigued, they won’t read the rest of it. That might sound cruel, but why should they continue to read something that they think is boring when there are so many other stories in their “slush pile” to read? You need to engage the reader right from the beginning if you want them to care about your novel.

I learned this the hard way. The first few stories I wrote lacked an engaging opening. I think the best way to learn is to revisit some of your favorite books. Most of the time, they had something that caught your attention right away. There was something to it that made you keep reading. You need to make sure you have “that thing” in your own novel.

Here are the dos and don’ts of writing an engaging opening hook:

Do:

Construct a scene that best represents your character

I’m not going to tell you there’s a wrong and right way to open your novel, because it really all depends on your novel. You need to know your character before you can begin writing your story, so only you will know how you should start it off. The best advice I can give is to construct a scene that helps us best understand your character. If they’re on the run, show us that they’re being chased. If they’re sad and lonely, construct a scene that lets us feel their isolation. You don’t necessarily need to open your book with action, but you do need to introduce the conflict. Think about what your character wants and go from there.

Help set the scene

The first chapter is a good time to explore the setting of your novel. You’re not going to use this chapter to completely describe your world, but you need to give your readers a taste of it. Use all your senses to present the setting to us. What does your character feel? Are they afraid? Are they happy? Are they cautious? Putting emotion into your scenes from the beginning will not only help set the tone, but we’ll get an immediate understanding of your world.

Introduce only important information

The first chapter is not the time to give us a long, drawn-out explanation of your world and characters. You need to find the simplest and most exciting way to get information across to your readers, so that they’ll be hooked from the beginning. Get your audience to care about your story. Don’t drag it down with details that don’t matter yet. Think of your first chapter as an introduction to an essay. You don’t go right into the points immediately, but you set us up for something good.

Don’t:

Describe your main character in detail

We don’t need to know everything about your main character in the first chapter. We don’t need to know everything about what they look like, their best friends, how they would describe themselves in the mirror, etc. If you want to do these things, they’re best left for later chapters. Your readers do not need to know everything from the beginning to get into your story. Give them a taste and draw them in.

Give long explanations

When writing a scene, it’s easy to get caught up in everything that you want to talk about all at once. You have to remember that you’ll have time to explain things later and it will probably be much more interesting if your readers have to wait. You don’t need to mention everything that’s happening and why it’s important. Present the information in the most engaging way possible and avoid these long explanations. We don’t need you main character to make a page long speech in the first chapter of your novel.

Fill your readers with unnecessary back story

Again, too much back story in your first chapter will kill your momentum. Anything that’s unnecessary to know from the beginning can be put off until later. I know it’s exciting to get into the meat of your novel, but your readers have to care about your world and characters before you keep talking about it. Don’t be afraid to cut something or push something back to later chapters. You’ll also improve the pacing of your novel if you keep these things in mind.

It’s super important to remember that all of these things won’t apply to every novel. There are times when the opening of your novel will break all these rules and there will be exceptions to every single one of them. However, if you keep getting feedback that people “can’t get into your novel”; it might be because your first chapter is weak. Also, if you’re having trouble with your first chapter and can’t seem to get it right, leave it for later. You can always go back and change something if you don’t love it.

Reblogged from apihtawikosisan  1,806 notes

If you’re a boy writer, it’s a simple rule: you’ve gotta get used to the fact that you suck at writing women and that the worst woman writer can write a better man than the best male writer can write a good woman. And it’s just the minimum. Because the thing about the sort of heteronormative masculine privilege, whether it’s in Santo Domingo, or the United States, is you grow up your entire life being told that women aren’t human beings, and that women have no independent subjectivity. And because you grow up with this, it’s this huge surprise when you go to college and realize that, “Oh, women aren’t people who do my shit and fuck me.”

And I think that this a huge challenge for boys, because they want to pretend they can write girls. Every time I’m teaching boys to write, I read their women to them, and I’m like, “Yo, you think this is good writing?” These motherfuckers attack each other over cliche lines but they won’t attack each other over these toxic representations of women that they have inherited… their sexist shorthand, they think that is observation. They think that their sexist distortions are insight. And if you’re in a writing program and you say to a guy that their characters are sexist, this guy, it’s like you said they fucking love Hitler. They will fight tooth and nail because they want to preserve this really vicious sexism in the art because that is what they have been taught.

And I think the first step is to admit that you, because of your privilege, have a very distorted sense of women’s subjectivity. And without an enormous amount of assistance, you’re not even going to get a D. I think with male writers the most that you can hope for is a D with an occasional C thrown in. Where the average woman writer, when she writes men, she gets a B right off the bat, because they spent their whole life being taught that men have a subjectivity. In fact, part of the whole feminism revolution was saying, “Me too, motherfuckers.” So women come with it built in because of the society.

It’s the same way when people write about race. If you didn’t grow up being a subaltern person in the United States, you might need help writing about race. Motherfuckers are like ‘I got a black boy friend,’ and their shit sounds like Klan Fiction 101.

The most toxic formulas in our cultures are not pass down in political practice, they’re pass down in mundane narratives. It’s our fiction where the toxic virus of sexism, racism, homophobia, where it passes from one generation to the next, and the average artist will kill you before they remove those poisons. And if you want to be a good artist, it means writing, really, about the world. And when you write cliches, whether they are sexist, racist, homophobic, classist, that is a fucking cliche. And motherfuckers will kill you for their cliches about x, but they want their cliches about their race, class, queerness. They want it in there because they feel lost without it. So for me, this has always been the great challenge.

As a writer, if you’re really trying to write something new, you must figure out, with the help of a community, how can you shed these fucking received formulas. They are received. You didn’t come up with them. And why we need fellow artists is because they help us stay on track. They tell you, “You know what? You’re a bit of a fucking homophobe.” You can’t write about the world with these simplistic distortions. They are cliches. People know art, always, because they are uncomfortable. Art discomforts. The trangressiveness of art has to deal with confronting people with the real. And sexism is a way to avoid the real, avoiding the reality of women. Homophobia is to avoid the real, the reality of queerness. All these things are the way we hide from encountering the real. But art, art is just about that.

By

Junot Diaz speaking at Word Up: Community Bookshop in 2012 (via ethiopienne)

i love this

im also lol’ing imagining someone saying “wow this has A LOT of GENERALIZATIONS about MEN HUH we’re not all like that!!!”

(via bocks)

"The most toxic formulas in our cultures are not pass down in political practice, they’re pass down in mundane narratives. It’s our fiction where the toxic virus of sexism, racism, homophobia, where it passes from one generation to the next, and the average artist will kill you before they remove those poisons. "

So much this!

(via tuejjlaz)

Reblogged from fictionalfeather  478,981 notes
findingmyrecovery:

Wanted to share this helpful tool with anyone who needs it. A lot of people have a hard time putting their feelings into words and identifying what emotions they are feeling. This is called a feeling wheel. It can help you get to the core emotion you are experiencing and help you name each feeling when you’re overwhelmed with many emotions

findingmyrecovery:

Wanted to share this helpful tool with anyone who needs it. A lot of people have a hard time putting their feelings into words and identifying what emotions they are feeling. This is called a feeling wheel. It can help you get to the core emotion you are experiencing and help you name each feeling when you’re overwhelmed with many emotions

Reblogged from fictionalfeather  57,916 notes
Reblogged from fictionalfeather  55,536 notes
amandaonwriting:


Writers can use these 12 Archetypes to create characters
The 12 Common Archetypes by Carl Golden
The twelve archetypes are divided into ego types, self types, and soul types. 
1) The Four Ego Types 1. The InnocentMotto: Free to be you and meCore desire: to get to paradiseGoal: to be happyGreatest fear: to be punished for doing something bad or wrongStrategy: to do things rightWeakness: boring for all their naive innocenceTalent: faith and optimismThe Innocent is also known as: Utopian, traditionalist, naive, mystic, saint, romantic, dreamer. 2. The Orphan/Regular Guy or GalMotto: All men and women are created equalCore Desire: connecting with othersGoal: to belongGreatest fear: to be left out or to stand out from the crowdStrategy: develop ordinary solid virtues, be down to earth, the common touchWeakness: losing one’s own self in an effort to blend in or for the sake of superficial relationshipsTalent: realism, empathy, lack of pretenceThe Regular Person is also known as: The good old boy, everyman, the person next door, the realist, the working stiff, the solid citizen, the good neighbour, the silent majority. 3. The HeroMotto: Where there’s a will, there’s a wayCore desire: to prove one’s worth through courageous actsGoal: expert mastery in a way that improves the worldGreatest fear: weakness, vulnerability, being a “chicken”Strategy: to be as strong and competent as possibleWeakness: arrogance, always needing another battle to fightTalent: competence and courageThe Hero is also known as: The warrior, crusader, rescuer, superhero, the soldier, dragon slayer, the winner and the team player. 4. The CaregiverMotto: Love your neighbour as yourselfCore desire: to protect and care for othersGoal: to help othersGreatest fear: selfishness and ingratitudeStrategy: doing things for othersWeakness: martyrdom and being exploitedTalent: compassion, generosityThe Caregiver is also known as: The saint, altruist, parent, helper, supporter. 2) The Four Soul Types         5. The ExplorerMotto: Don’t fence me inCore desire: the freedom to find out who you are through exploring the worldGoal: to experience a better, more authentic, more fulfilling lifeBiggest fear: getting trapped, conformity, and inner emptinessStrategy: journey, seeking out and experiencing new things, escape from boredomWeakness: aimless wandering, becoming a misfitTalent: autonomy, ambition, being true to one’s soulThe explorer is also known as: The seeker, iconoclast, wanderer, individualist, pilgrim. 6. The RebelMotto: Rules are made to be brokenCore desire: revenge or revolutionGoal: to overturn what isn’t workingGreatest fear: to be powerless or ineffectualStrategy: disrupt, destroy, or shockWeakness: crossing over to the dark side, crimeTalent: outrageousness, radical freedomThe Outlaw is also known as: The rebel, revolutionary, wild man, the misfit, or iconoclast. 7. The LoverMotto: You’re the only oneCore desire: intimacy and experienceGoal: being in a relationship with the people, work and surroundings they loveGreatest fear: being alone, a wallflower, unwanted, unlovedStrategy: to become more and more physically and emotionally attractiveWeakness: outward-directed desire to please others at risk of losing own identityTalent: passion, gratitude, appreciation, and commitmentThe Lover is also known as: The partner, friend, intimate, enthusiast, sensualist, spouse, team-builder. 8. The CreatorMotto: If you can imagine it, it can be doneCore desire: to create things of enduring valueGoal: to realize a visionGreatest fear: mediocre vision or executionStrategy: develop artistic control and skillTask: to create culture, express own visionWeakness: perfectionism, bad solutionsTalent: creativity and imaginationThe Creator is also known as: The artist, inventor, innovator, musician, writer or dreamer. 3) The Four Self Types 9. The JesterMotto: You only live onceCore desire: to live in the moment with full enjoymentGoal: to have a great time and lighten up the worldGreatest fear: being bored or boring othersStrategy: play, make jokes, be funnyWeakness: frivolity, wasting timeTalent: joyThe Jester is also known as: The fool, trickster, joker, practical joker or comedian. 10. The SageMotto: The truth will set you freeCore desire: to find the truth.Goal: to use intelligence and analysis to understand the world.Biggest fear: being duped, misled—or ignorance.Strategy: seeking out information and knowledge; self-reflection and understanding thought processes.Weakness: can study details forever and never act.Talent: wisdom, intelligence.The Sage is also known as: The expert, scholar, detective, advisor, thinker, philosopher, academic, researcher, thinker, planner, professional, mentor, teacher, contemplative. 11. The MagicianMotto: I make things happen.Core desire: understanding the fundamental laws of the universeGoal: to make dreams come trueGreatest fear: unintended negative consequencesStrategy: develop a vision and live by itWeakness: becoming manipulativeTalent: finding win-win solutionsThe Magician is also known as: The visionary, catalyst, inventor, charismatic leader, shaman, healer, medicine man. 12. The RulerMotto: Power isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.Core desire: controlGoal: create a prosperous, successful family or communityStrategy: exercise powerGreatest fear: chaos, being overthrownWeakness: being authoritarian, unable to delegateTalent: responsibility, leadershipThe Ruler is also known as: The boss, leader, aristocrat, king, queen, politician, role model, manager or administrator.
Note: There are four cardinal orientations: freedom, social, ego, order. The types have a place on these orientations.
Article via soulcraft.co

amandaonwriting:

Writers can use these 12 Archetypes to create characters

The 12 Common Archetypes by Carl Golden

The twelve archetypes are divided into ego types, self types, and soul types. 

1) The Four Ego Types
 
1. The Innocent
Motto: Free to be you and me
Core desire: to get to paradise
Goal: to be happy
Greatest fear: to be punished for doing something bad or wrong
Strategy: to do things right
Weakness: boring for all their naive innocence
Talent: faith and optimism
The Innocent is also known as: Utopian, traditionalist, naive, mystic, saint, romantic, dreamer.
 
2. The Orphan/Regular Guy or Gal
Motto: All men and women are created equal
Core Desire: connecting with others
Goal: to belong
Greatest fear: to be left out or to stand out from the crowd
Strategy: develop ordinary solid virtues, be down to earth, the common touch
Weakness: losing one’s own self in an effort to blend in or for the sake of superficial relationships
Talent: realism, empathy, lack of pretence
The Regular Person is also known as: The good old boy, everyman, the person next door, the realist, the working stiff, the solid citizen, the good neighbour, the silent majority.
 
3. The Hero
Motto: Where there’s a will, there’s a way
Core desire: to prove one’s worth through courageous acts
Goal: expert mastery in a way that improves the world
Greatest fear: weakness, vulnerability, being a “chicken”
Strategy: to be as strong and competent as possible
Weakness: arrogance, always needing another battle to fight
Talent: competence and courage
The Hero is also known as: The warrior, crusader, rescuer, superhero, the soldier, dragon slayer, the winner and the team player.
 
4. The Caregiver
Motto: Love your neighbour as yourself
Core desire: to protect and care for others
Goal: to help others
Greatest fear: selfishness and ingratitude
Strategy: doing things for others
Weakness: martyrdom and being exploited
Talent: compassion, generosity
The Caregiver is also known as: The saint, altruist, parent, helper, supporter.
 
2) The Four Soul Types
         
5. The Explorer
Motto: Don’t fence me in
Core desire: the freedom to find out who you are through exploring the world
Goal: to experience a better, more authentic, more fulfilling life
Biggest fear: getting trapped, conformity, and inner emptiness
Strategy: journey, seeking out and experiencing new things, escape from boredom
Weakness: aimless wandering, becoming a misfit
Talent: autonomy, ambition, being true to one’s soul
The explorer is also known as: The seeker, iconoclast, wanderer, individualist, pilgrim.
 
6. The Rebel
Motto: Rules are made to be broken
Core desire: revenge or revolution
Goal: to overturn what isn’t working
Greatest fear: to be powerless or ineffectual
Strategy: disrupt, destroy, or shock
Weakness: crossing over to the dark side, crime
Talent: outrageousness, radical freedom
The Outlaw is also known as: The rebel, revolutionary, wild man, the misfit, or iconoclast.
 
7. The Lover
Motto: You’re the only one
Core desire: intimacy and experience
Goal: being in a relationship with the people, work and surroundings they love
Greatest fear: being alone, a wallflower, unwanted, unloved
Strategy: to become more and more physically and emotionally attractive
Weakness: outward-directed desire to please others at risk of losing own identity
Talent: passion, gratitude, appreciation, and commitment
The Lover is also known as: The partner, friend, intimate, enthusiast, sensualist, spouse, team-builder.
 
8. The Creator
Motto: If you can imagine it, it can be done
Core desire: to create things of enduring value
Goal: to realize a vision
Greatest fear: mediocre vision or execution
Strategy: develop artistic control and skill
Task: to create culture, express own vision
Weakness: perfectionism, bad solutions
Talent: creativity and imagination
The Creator is also known as: The artist, inventor, innovator, musician, writer or dreamer.
 
3) The Four Self Types
 
9. The Jester
Motto: You only live once
Core desire: to live in the moment with full enjoyment
Goal: to have a great time and lighten up the world
Greatest fear: being bored or boring others
Strategy: play, make jokes, be funny
Weakness: frivolity, wasting time
Talent: joy
The Jester is also known as: The fool, trickster, joker, practical joker or comedian.
 
10. The Sage
Motto: The truth will set you free
Core desire: to find the truth.
Goal: to use intelligence and analysis to understand the world.
Biggest fear: being duped, misled—or ignorance.
Strategy: seeking out information and knowledge; self-reflection and understanding thought processes.
Weakness: can study details forever and never act.
Talent: wisdom, intelligence.
The Sage is also known as: The expert, scholar, detective, advisor, thinker, philosopher, academic, researcher, thinker, planner, professional, mentor, teacher, contemplative.
 
11. The Magician
Motto: I make things happen.
Core desire: understanding the fundamental laws of the universe
Goal: to make dreams come true
Greatest fear: unintended negative consequences
Strategy: develop a vision and live by it
Weakness: becoming manipulative
Talent: finding win-win solutions
The Magician is also known as: The visionary, catalyst, inventor, charismatic leader, shaman, healer, medicine man.
 
12. The Ruler
Motto: Power isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.
Core desire: control
Goal: create a prosperous, successful family or community
Strategy: exercise power
Greatest fear: chaos, being overthrown
Weakness: being authoritarian, unable to delegate
Talent: responsibility, leadership
The Ruler is also known as: The boss, leader, aristocrat, king, queen, politician, role model, manager or administrator.

Note: There are four cardinal orientations: freedom, social, ego, order. The types have a place on these orientations.

Article via soulcraft.co