Character Type & Trope Thesaurus: Newcomer
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by BECCA PUGLISI
15h ago
In 1959, Carl Jung first popularized the idea of archetypes—”universal images that have existed since the remotest times.” He posited that every person is a blend of these 12 basic personalities. Ever since then, authors have been applying this idea to fictional characters, combining the different archetypes to come up with interesting new versions. The result is a sizable pool of character tropes that we see from one story to another. Archetypes and tropes are popular storytelling elements because of their familiarity. Upon seeing them, readers know immediately who they’re dealing with and wh ..read more
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Don’t Make These 10 Self-Publishing Mistakes!
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by Guest Contributor
3d ago
By Sarah Kolb-Williams I’ve been a freelance book editor for over fifteen years, and I’ve had the privilege of editing hundreds of books. Unfortunately, I’ve seen authors invest serious money only to make publishing mistakes that cost them visibility, sales, and hope. If you’re self-publishing, you’re wrangling a lot of tasks. After spending so much time on your manuscript, you might feel like you just want to get the thing out there already. But please, fight the urge to skip any of these important steps—any one of them could make or break your chances of success. In part one of this two-par ..read more
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The Pirate’s Guide to Writing Fantasy
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by MICHELLE BARKER - Resident Writing Coach
5d ago
Remember the scene in Pirates of the Caribbean when Captain Barbossa explains the pirate’s code? “The code is more what you’d call guidelines than actual rules.” Writing fantasy is a bit like the pirate’s code. There aren’t any rules, exactly, which is what makes it so fun to write. You can allow your imagination free rein. But there is one “must have”: strong world-building. And world-building is one of those things that can easily get out of hand. Guidelines For Avoiding Mayhem Mayhem may include confusion, infodumping, logic issues, and cliches—all of which impact reader immersion. Here a ..read more
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Phenomenal First Pages Contest
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by BECCA PUGLISI
1w ago
Hey, wonderful writerly people! It’s time for Phenomenal First Pages, our monthly critique contest. So, if you need a bit of help with your first page, today’s the day to enter for a chance to win professional feedback! Entering is easy. All you need to do is leave your contact information onthis entry form(or click the graphic below). If you are a winner, we’ll notify you and explain how to send us your first page. Contest Details This is a 24-hour contest, so enter ASAP. Make sure your contact information on the entry form is correct. Three winners will be drawn. We will email you if you ..read more
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Four Must-Haves in the First Two Paragraphs of Every Chapter or Scene
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by SUZY VADORI - Resident Writing Coach
1w ago
Begin Each Scene in Your Book with Grounding Have you ever been running late, and found yourself scrambling around your house, looking for your car keys? Where did you leave them – on the kitchen counter? By the front door? Oh wait, you went up to your bedroom to get something. You race up the stairs, step into your room, and then stop short. You blink. You made your bed already. The blinds are drawn. What were you looking for, again? For the life of you, you can’t remember. This is a real phenomenon, so if you’ve experienced this, it doesn’t mean that you’re losing your marbles. It’s called ..read more
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Character Type and Trope Thesaurus: Starving Artist
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by BECCA PUGLISI
2w ago
In 1959, Carl Jung first popularized the idea of archetypes—”universal images that have existed since the remotest times.” He posited that every person is a blend of these 12 basic personalities. Ever since then, authors have been applying this idea to fictional characters, combining the different archetypes to come up with interesting new versions. The result is a sizable pool of character tropes that we see from one story to another. Archetypes and tropes are popular storytelling elements because of their familiarity. Upon seeing them, readers know immediately who they’re dealing with and wh ..read more
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Why Writers Should Be Their Own Valentine This Year
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by ANGELA ACKERMAN
2w ago
Valentine’s Day is coming, and people have big feelings about it. On one hand, it’s nice to have a set day to celebrate loved ones, but on the other, pressure to buy overpriced chocolates and flowers to ‘show’ love can cast a shadow on things. Me? I think gifts are nice to give and receive, but pressure shouldn’t be part of it. But on the subject of Valentine’s Day, I have a question for you: When you’re showing others you care on V-Day, are you giving yourself some of that love, too? Because you should. You deserve it. Think about how you put a ton of effort into others each day, being the b ..read more
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Mastering Turning Points in Relationship Plots
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by SEPTEMBER C FAWKES - Resident Writing Coach
2w ago
A turning point (also known as a “plot turn” or “plot point”) changes the direction of the story, through an action or a revelation. The protagonist was going one direction, and an event takes place or information is revealed, and the protagonist is now on a different trajectory. Major turning points are often recognized in popular story structures. “Crossing the Threshold” in the Hero’s Journey and “All is Lost” in Save the Cat are both examples of major turning points. And let’s not forget, the biggest turning point of all, the climax, turns the story from conflict to resolution. Previously ..read more
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Character Type & Trope Thesaurus: Wallflower
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by BECCA PUGLISI
3w ago
In 1959, Carl Jung first popularized the idea of archetypes—”universal images that have existed since the remotest times.” He posited that every person is a blend of these 12 basic personalities. Ever since then, authors have been applying this idea to fictional characters, combining the different archetypes to come up with interesting new versions. The result is a sizable pool of character tropes that we see from one story to another. Archetypes and tropes are popular storytelling elements because of their familiarity. Upon seeing them, readers know immediately who they’re dealing with and wh ..read more
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What Are Your Questions about Writing & the Business Side of Being an Author?
Writers Helping Writers | Descriptive Writing Blog
by BECCA PUGLISI
3w ago
Is it just me or did the month of January fly by? Seems like I was just putting away Christmas decorations and gearing up for the new year. January’s always a busy time for Angela and me because it’s when we do our annual planning—figuring out what our goals should be and how we should allocate our time. Staying organized is more important than ever because we’re closing in on 16 years of blogging (crazy!), and things are a little busier and more complex at Writers Helping Writers than they were in 2008. So carefully planning our time is key to us staying sane. But we still find ourselves lo ..read more
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