7 WAYS TO WRITE AN IMPERFECT PROTAGONIST PERFECTLY

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every other Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

THE 7 WAYS TO WRITE AN IMPERFECT PROTAGONIST PERFECTLY

Every story has its central character the entire story revolves around- this character is your protagonist. They are the most importance character in the entire story, and likely the one you spend the most time crafting and creating before writing the actual story.

But what are the elements that make up a successful protagonist? And, of course, by “successful,” I mean one that audiences will want to read.

Girl from Pride and Prejudice movie walking and reading book while smiling and turning page

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THE POWER OF PERSISTENCE: WHY WRITER’S BLOCK IS A LIE, PART 1

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

THE POWER OF PERSISTENCE: WHY WRITER’S BLOCK IS A LIE, PART 1

Just two weeks ago I addressed how to combat fear of rejection when it comes to writing (WRITING AND PUBLICATION: WHY REJECTION IS NEVER REJECTION), but this week, I am going to delve a little deeper into why it is important to push past not only the fear, but also the excuses that writers like to give themselves.

If you’re reading this, chances are you are creative in some fashion. Creatives, on the whole, have a tendency to be fiercely intelligent, dedicated, and, erm, over-dramatic.

A man in a heavily decorated Italian mask quickly removes it and reveals that he is on stage in a huge, colorful dress while saying, "Drama!"

*Ahem* Yes, well, I don’t know about you, but that’s never me. Never. …Okay, so MAYBE it is, but only some of the time.

As I mentioned in my post WRITING WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW—LIBERTIES VS. RESEARCH, I had the chance to see Neil Gaiman speak live about a month or so ago, and he said something that was hilarious and simultaneously brilliant:

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ARE WRITERS REALLY THAT IMPORTANT?

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

ARE WRITERS REALLY THAT IMPORTANT?

So this week is going to be a bit different from what I normally do. For those of you who have been reading for a while, you know I usually like to stick pretty strictly to “how to write” themed posts.

But today I’m going talk about why we write, and why it’s important to keep writing.

There’s been a lot of turmoil in the political/human rights world lately, and regardless of which side you are on, the whole situation has been very stressful. Facebook newsfeeds are starting to fill up with posts like, “ENJOY THIS PICTURE OF A HAPPY PUPPY BECAUSE LET’S FACE IT WE COULD ALL USE IT.”

But what about stories? What about words? Do people still need them, or are drive-by 0.5 seconds of puppies all the world needs right now?

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HOW TO WRITE FLAWED HEROES

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

HOW TO WRITE FLAWED HEROES

Evening, everyone! This week we are talking about something really awesome and potentially contradictory: flawed heroes!

We all know that your main character/protagonist/hero should have at least one or two character flaws. Maybe your character drinks a lot, or maybe they’re as greedy as Mr. Krabs despite having a heart of gold. (See what I did there?)

Mr. Krabs from Spongebob diving into pile of money

But why is it so important that your main character be flawed? Shouldn’t we leave all of the hyperbolic flaws to the villain?

Well, maybe not. I’d argue that it’s often times more important that your hero is flawed, which is why this week we’re going to look at something I don’t usually talk about or encourage: Continue reading

HOW TO WRITE LIKE AN A.I.

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

HOW TO WRITE LIKE AN A.I.

Maybe you haven’t heard, but there are people out there writing books now. And by people, I mean robots. And by robots, I mean A.I.

The future is here, folks. Artificial intelligence programs are writing short novels which are being entered into contests, like the Hoshi Shinichi Literary Award, which relatively recently opened up its metaphorical doors to non-human contestants. (Read more from this article: A Japanese AI program just wrote a short novel, and it almost won a literary prize by Chloe Olewitz.)

With things such as artificial intelligence programs competing, and competing successfully, with humans in the artistic field of writing, how can one ever hope to keep up? Aren’t computers just better than us?

Binary code in green over black background from The Matrix

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WRITING BELIEVABLE VILLAINS: THE CODE OF JUSTICE

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

WRITING BELIEVABLE VILLAINS: THE CODE OF JUSTICE

Happy New Year, everyone! We’re starting out the new year with Part Two of our series on Writing Believable Villains (Part 1: THE 7 WAYS TO WRITE A BELIEVABLE VILLAIN.)

Your villain is oftentimes not only as important as your protagonist, but also moreso. How can this be? Aren’t they just the opposite of each other?

The answer is, “They are the opposite of each other.” But how and why are necessary to understand before blazing in there and creating another stereotypical villain, because let’s face it: we all want to create a killer villain! (No pun intended.)

Captain Picard from Star Trek: The Next Generation with his hand shamefully on his forehead

In musicals, isn’t it often the villain songs that are, for one reason or another, some of the best? Well, we want your written villain to feel the same—and this week we are going to use a song to demonstrate how creating those moments works.

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THE 7 WAYS TO WRITE A BELIEVABLE VILLAIN

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

THE 7 WAYS TO WRITE A BELIEVABLE VILLAIN

Well, I hope everyone had a very merry Christmas, and that you have a lovely New Year! This week, I thought what better way to bookend a year than by talking about villains who, as a general rule, hate new beginnings?

We’ve all seen villain stereotypes. The guy stroking his cat, Darth Vader who is so bad, but ends up so pitiful. Same with Loki—you want to see him change, and even worse (better?) you see the potential for him to be good, and make for himself a better life. But he never does. And most of our villains never take that chance.

BUT WHY?

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HOW TO WRITE A PAGE-TURNER

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

How to Write a Page-Turner

Ah, yes. The allure of perfection. The ability to “do the thing” in such a way that it captivates not just a niche audience, but the whole world. Fame will be yours if you can just “do it right,” “do it the best way.”

Lies.

The fact of the matter is that not everyone likes The Lord of the Rings. Not everyone likes The Name of the Wind. Not everyone likes Harry Potter. And let’s think about that last one—J. K. Rowling was a billionaire, and only recently dropped off the Forbes billionaires list because she donated so much to charity.

But she was a billionaire, and STILL not everyone likes her books.

Moral of the story: If you’re writing to please the audience of the world, you will always be disappointed, because you will always fall short.

Positive spin: If you are writing your book to impart YOUR GOAL HERE upon the world, then you can succeed!

If your goal is simply to provide happiness to the world? Fantastic. If it’s more specific? Wonderful! But we’ve gotta make sure people keep turning the pages of your work so that they make it all the way to the end and have the fullest picture of your book.

Here are some ways we can make sure they do!
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THE RIGHT WRITING SPACE

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesdays, where I post (you guessed it) tips on writing every Wednesday at 5:00 PM ET. This week’s topic:

The Right Writing Space

Happy Wednesday, everyone! I am very excited about this week’s post, as it is a topic that never gets old to me. I love talking to other writers and finding out how they execute their craft, but equally important to how one works is where one works.

The space where one chooses to write is borderline sacred. The writing space is as unique as the writers and the stories they tell. So how can one expect that the same writing space will be conducive to every writer on the planet? Truth is, one can’t. Spaces that would work for one type of person would be another’s nightmare. So how does one figure out what type of writing space might work best for them? Well, let me take you on a little journey…

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