Writing a compelling and engaging story is a lot like telling a joke. Just as a joke follows a certain format, so does a story within a specific genre. Whether you’re penning a mystery, a romance, or a thriller, each genre comes with its own set of expectations, much like the setup, narrative, and punchline of a joke. Use genre expectations to add obligatory scenes that readers expect. This will boost your fiction story plotting and lead to a more satisfying and captivating reading experience.
If you’re a writer, then you’ve faced this question before: “Where do you get your ideas?” Well, the idea part is easy. They pop up all the time. Ideas are like atoms, easy to discover and there are only so many to choose from. It’s how you combine these ideas that matters. Creativity is chemistry, constantly rehashing the same core concepts to create something new.
Creating subtext for your character is a crucial tool in a fiction writer’s arsenal. It adds depth, complexity, and intrigue to your characters and plot. Subtext is the art of saying one thing on the surface while conveying deeper, hidden meanings underneath.
The five commandments of a scene, as outlined by Shawn Coyne’s revolutionary Story Grid approach, will bring any scene to life. These commandments — Inciting Incident, Turning Point, Crisis, Climax, and Resolution — are the pillars that sustain the drama, tension, and satisfaction in any given scene.
How can you manage to get off the ground as a writer when you are saddled with a full-time job? I struggled with this very dilemma for many years. Yes, I’d love to dive headfirst into writing each and every day. But I have this funny habit…I like to eat. So how do we keep food on the table and a roof over our heads, yet still fulfill our passions as writers? The secret to fitting writing around your work lies in shifting some priorities and also shutting down diversions.
In a world buzzing with constant stimulation and digital distractions, it might seem counterintuitive to sing the praises of procrastination. Yet, for creative writers, stepping away from your main project can be a hidden gem, a fertile ground for inspiration, and a powerful tool for honing their craft. Learn how procrastination can make you more productive rather than feeling like wasted time.
Sometimes I’m afraid to write the next new chapter. It’s like a seed of doubt growing inside my head. As an avoidance, I switch to revising. Like that will somehow dodge this fear. Yet this slows down my writing as a whole. Coping with anxiety in writing can be daunting.
Writing is my passion. I’ve been at this crazy endeavor since I penned my first “story” about a battle between a chimera and a swordsman (big D&D nut here). But now, decades later, I have a full time job and a family. Oftentimes, my writing time each day is a scant fifteen minutes. But I’m on a mission to change that and maximize writing time.
Us writers yearn for comfort. Yet true growth lies beyond the well-trodden path. Stepping out of your comfort zone to embrace discomfort is an essential aspect of a writer’s journey. Writers can harness the power of being uncomfortable to propel their creativity and achieve their writing goals.
Scenes are the beating heart of any gripping tale, captivating readers with their relentless action and unyielding tension. Yet we writers often neglect the aftermath. When the dust settles, it’s time for the sequel to shine — the final part to writing a compelling scene.