In: Character, Cliche, Dialogue, Grammar, INT/EXT, List, Plot, screenwriting, Syd Field, Top 10, Voice
What makes a reader hate a screenplay on sight? Here are 10 pet peeves - and fixes.
In: Character, Character, Craft, editing, Plot, Plot, POV, POV, Setting, Setting, Short Stories, Storyville, Voice, Voice
Richard dissects another of his short stories, this time, the contest winning, "Maker of Flight."
In: Character, Craft, Dialogue, Literary Devices, Narrative Hooks, Plot, POV, Setting, Storyville, Structure
Writing a great narrative hook isn't easy, but it's one way to grab your audience and never let them go.
In: editing, fiction writing, Grammar, Plot, Revision, Rewriting, Storyville, Structure, Vocabulary, Workshop
It's been said that the difference between a good writer and a great writer is editing. So let's hop to it.
A beginning, a middle, and an end. Let's talk about the end. Make it resonate.
In: cell phone novels, facebook novels, Plot, twitter novels, writing apps, writing on smartphones, writing on tablets
We're moving on from the land of computers to writing on tablets and smart phones. Here are a few ways that writing is happening with these new implements.
Ten obvious truths about fiction and its relationship with your readers.
Learn all about how to write the shortest stories possible, plus enter your own 10 word/2 sentence short short for a chance to win some LitReactor swag. Short short = Win win!
When crafting fiction from your real life, tread lightly and follow these tips.
Where do you get your ideas? Turns out, you can get them just about anywhere. But the best stories tap into your personal experiences and emotional truths.
Of all the rules that apply to fiction writing, perhaps none is more misleading than the common, banal adage that you should “write what you know.”
Does a character have to “change” during the course of a story? Do they have to evolve? Or can they continue behaving the same as always, even at the end of the narrative?
Writers are often faced with the predicament of writing themselves into a plot corner. We know where our stories are supposed to go, but the plot becomes an impasse to resolution instead of a gateway.
In: Cervantes, Craft, Dave Eggers, Don Quixote, Literary Devices, metafiction, Narrator, nonfiction, Plot, POV, Structure
When narrators escape--a discussion of metafiction.
A true rewrite is not just editing, proofing or copy-editing, but a complete re-imagining of the work. Here’s a four-part process to fortify writers with a successful re-writing plan that works.
Maintaining action is paramount in fiction, but sooner or later we’ll need to deliver expository details for our stories to make sense. So, how do writers engage while providing character depth?
Many writers eschew compelling characters in favor of mannequin tropes that serve as props for preexisting social messages, or characters a reader can “relate to.” Here’s why it’s always bad writing.
The ending is the most important part, and as a writer you should want to write a spectacular ending because, hey, you did a heck-of-a-lot of work on the beginning and middle parts.
How to Generate plot ideas for your NaNoWriMo novel.
Every story possesses the "horizontal" movement from plot point to plot point and finally to resolution, as well as the "vertical" development of character, theme, and emotional resonance. Discover Chuck's approach to building a story in layers.
What does Fight Club have in common with The Great Gatsby? In this first "talking shapes" essay, Chuck reveals two of the more encompassing plot shapes that you can begin to recognize as you create from the same basic patterns.
In this second "talking shapes" essay, Chuck explores a basic paradox of storytelling, while revealing what you can do about it. The Thumbnail opening foreshadows major plot points in advance and creates authority, without giving too much away.
An excellent plot for horror and dark fantasy, the Cycle enlists and seduces the reader even as it enlists and seduces the protagonist. Learn what to look for from a few of Chuck's favorites, while putting this plot shape to work for yourself.
Take a look at your work. Are you writing a classic rebel-follower-witness story? If not, what kind of myth are you creating? This essay takes up the mythic patterns prominent in our culture and provides great examples.