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How to Make a Killer Character Sheet

How to Make a Killer Character Sheet

HOW TO MAKE A KILLER CHARACTER SHEETI’m very visually oriented, if you haven’t guessed from the graphics series that appears periodically on this blog. I brainstorm and process stories best through tactile exercises. This is one reason my character sheets are a little bit ridiculous, but also very thorough. My friend and partner in crime, Annie, is much the same way — and at any given time you should assume that these blog entries were created by our hive mind because we steal each others’ stuff constantly.

Anyway. Today I’m going to walk you through making…Continue Reading

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5 Things to Help You Prep for Your Novel’s Climax

5 Things to Help You Prep for Your Novel’s Climax

I have friends who absolutely love writing their story’s climax. It’s their favorite part of the writing process.

I am not one of those people.

The thought of writing a climax makes me want to do my laundry. I would rather clean the hair out of my drain than start drafting my climax. I cannot tell you how spotless my house gets when I reach the latter third of my novel.

The first draft of my climaxes (and everyone’s, I’d hazard) are terrifyingly awful. But this time around, I wanted to put in work beforehand to help save on rewrites after. Below are the five ways I’ve tried to make my approaching climax (*coughsplutter*) fun.

1. Interviews and Questionnaires

K.M. Weiland is…Continue Reading

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The Madwoman’s Outlining Technique

The Madwoman’s Outlining Technique

Since my WIP, Illuminate, is also the thesis project for my graduate program, I don’t have as much time as I’m used to for fiddling around and rewriting stuff.

The logical response? Go absolutely crazy.

Step 1: Make Character Arcs for Everyone.

The Interwebs contain lots of great information about character arcs, so in brief: In the course of a story, characters will respond to conflict on an external and internal level, and by the conclusion characters will undergo some sort of change. This creates story arcs.

Every book has at least one major arc. I personally like Doug Tennapel’s advice to split stories into three acts, each with their own arc.

Here’s how I did it.

Write one sentence summaries…Continue Reading

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