Tag Archives: characterization

Win One of These Tools for Creating Better Fictional Characters

Characters are the linchpin of any good story–no matter how clever the plot or how intriguing the setting, if your characters fall flat, your story is likely to fall flat.

I’d love to help you create multi-faceted characters your readers will love…or love to hate.

That’s why I’ve joined nine other authors and writing coaches in a New Year’s giveaway for writers: you could win a course, a book or a consultation with a pro to help you master the art of characterization.

Check out these awesome prizes:

  • ONE $75 Amazon gift certificate, so you can buy a bunch of books on writing craft
  • 1 30-minute Skype consultation with Rachael Herron (normally $100)
  • 1 30-minute phone consultation with writing expert Alicia Rasley (normally $50)
  • 1 seat in Lynn Johnston’s course, Creating Archetypal Characters (normally $37)
  • 1 seat in Beth Barany’s course, Creating Compelling Characters (normally $97)
  • 1 ebook by Britt Malka, ABC Character Method (normally $14.97)
  • 1 paperback copy of The Story Grid by Shawn Coyne and a FREE scene analysis for character by a certified Story Grid editor, J. Thorn (normally $285)
  • 1 paperback copy of The 12 Key Pillars of Novel Construction by C.S. Lakin (normally $14.95)
  • 10 ebook bundles containing: Quick and Dirty Character Tips by Heidi Angell, Seven Secrets to Creating Great Characters by Margaret Lucke, and Don’t Write Like We Talk by Catharine Bramkamp (normally $13.97)

Once you’ve entered the giveaway by filling out the Rafflecopter with your email, get more entries by sharing this giveaway with your fellow writers via Twitter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Why Do Writers Get Stuck Even When Writing With An Outline?

A quick tips video for you today — two reasons why you might get stuck in the middle of your first draft, even if you’re writing with a detailed plot outline.


P.S. I’ve been working on a secret project for a couple of weeks now, and it’s almost time to pull back the curtain!  More news coming soon…

How to Create Powerful Internal Conflicts for Your Characters

I’m blogging at Savvy Authors today about how to construct internal conflicts so that they generate plot ideas and help you make the theme of your story stronger.

If you can complete the Internal Conflict Sentence, you’ll find out if your character’s internal conflict works (and it’ll be obvious how to fix it if it doesn’t work).  If you struggle to writing stories where the character’s inner struggles drive the external plot, this is where you start.

Read all about it at:


Hope to see you there!

The 8 Steps of the Character Growth Arc

For easy reference, here are the eight steps of the character growth arc (from my workshop, Dynamic Characterization: A No-Inspiration Required System for Creating Unforgettable Characters).

character arc tip graphic-300 wide 100 dpi

Do You Have a System for Getting Unstuck?

Last week, we talked about how systems make it more likely that you’ll achieve your goal.  Today I’d like to talk about creating systems for overcoming the obstacles that we all hit at one point or another.

In other words, systems for getting unstuck.

Because we all work a little bit differently, one size doesn’t fit all here.  What helps me might not help you.  The first step in creating your “unblocking” system is to take a few minutes to think about how you’ve written in the past. Continue reading

Why New Year’s Resolutions Don’t Work (and What Does)

The idea that next year could be different–that we could be different–it’s almost irresistible, isn’t it? Next year could be the year we lose that weight, get organized, and write the novel that’ll make us famous.

So many of us set ambitious goals for ourselves in December, only to drop them before the end of January. The goals we dub “New Year’s resolutions” aren’t enough.

Sure, you start with the goal. Write a novel. Or a non-fiction book. Or a collection of short stories. Or a memoir.

That’s the “what.”

But you also need to create a system to help you achieve that goal. Continue reading

Editing for Story, Part 3: Scenes

Welcome to the third video in the Editing for Story series!

Today we’re talking about questions to help you evaluate the content of your scenes and look for overall patterns as you create your revision list.

The Editing for Story videos are a companion to the Editing for Story ebook–don’t forget to download your free PDF after you watch the video.

The 30 Day Novel: NaNoWriMo Series, Day 30

Welcome to Day 30, the final day of NaNoWriMo!

Today we’re talking about your story’s resolution and how to tie up all those loose story ends, as well as the emotion that you’ll end your story on.

Thanks for stopping by! Come by tomorrow–we’ll talk about what to do next and how to get started on editing your novel.

The 30 Day Novel: NaNoWriMo Series, Day 30

Welcome to Day 30 of NaNoWriMo!

Today we’re talking about what makes for a great resolution, how to end your story on the right emotional note, and–you knew it was coming, didn’t you?–EDITS.

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Congratulations on making it to the end of NaNoWriMo!

Next week, we’ll be talking about some things to consider when editing a first draft–I hope to see you then.

The 30 Day Novel: NaNoWriMo Series, Day 29

Welcome to Day 29 of NaNoWriMo!

Today we’re talking about the defeat or victory of the protagonist during the climax of your novel and how to make it pay off in the biggest way possible, as well as handling endings in a book that’s part of a series.

Thanks for stopping by–come back tomorrow for Day 30 tips!