9.19.2010

Writing Advice #2

Hello fabulous readers! For those of you who haven't noticed, this blog isn't just a book blog, it's a writing blog too. For those of you who don't know what that means, it means that I'm a writer. This is where I post stuff I've written, including reviews, stories, and writing advice. Oh and sometimes random stuff. I also have a song of the week every week. Whoa, what does music have to do with writing? A lot. I almost always listen to music when I write. I don't always listen to the same music when I write. It's a little hard to write about someone dying with 'Party in the USA' blaring in the background, but that would be a perfect song for, oh I don't know, a scene about a Party in the USA? My point is that music can help you set the mood/tone *they are different* for your story. You'll see many authors (Maggie Stiefvater) post playlists for their books. The songs aren't just there because they fit the book, those are the songs they listened to while writing the book. So music+writing stories=good stories. Just make sure that the music fits for what you're writing and doesn't distract you, k?

My second point for this post is: Developing Characters. Now that doesn't mean taking a piece of paper and writing 'Kaycee- 5'2'', brown hair, green eyes.' No. That's wrong. It doesn't do much to help you. That's a good place to start, but you can't just stop with that. Ask yourself, what does Kaycee like? Why does Kaycee like that? Where was Kaycee born? Who are Kaycee's parents? Does Kaycee get along with her parents? Why or why not? What do people think when they see Kaycee? Who is Kaycee's best friend? Why does Kaycee like the color orange? What does Kaycee want to do when she grows up? What did Kaycee get for her 4th birthday? You pretty much have to tell Kaycee's life story. Awwww man! I have to write a whole other story before I can start my real one? No. You can just make a list with all that stuff listed. Just make sure you know  who Kaycee is and why. Odds are, you won't be using a lot of that list in your story, but it will help you. I promise. (P.S. Replace your character's name with Kaycee's. Do not steal Kaycee's identity.)

Next up for discussion: Chapter Outlining. (If you're the kind of person who can sit down and write a 500 page book without outlining anything, don't skip this paragraph. You will probably need its words of wisdom in the future.) First thing you do when you want to outline your chapters is write down what is going to happen in the chapter like so:
  • Riley wakes up from a disturbing dream
  • She hears a voice in her head
  • Ant Lisa takes her to school
  • Her side hurts and she gets really sick
  • A boy from her Spanish class takes her home
  • Aunt Lisa freaks out
  • The voice makes fun of her
See how I did that? Simple right? Next you write down the purposes of the chapter, or what you hope to accomplish with the chapter. For example:
  1. Introduces dream sequence
  2. Introduces voice (unnamed)
  3. Establishes relationship with Aunt Lisa
Also simple. After that, you fill in the details. Before you know it, BAM! You have chapter one! (Again, please do not steal Riley's identity. She will be very sad.)

How are we doing so far? Are we keeping up? Lets have some visual relief from all these words about words:



Hahahahahahaha! Look at his face! Hahahaha! OK, one more thing and we're done here. Last topic is basing your characters on real people. My tip would be don't to it. You can get into trouble doing that, and I don't mean legally, I mean people will personally hate you because of what you did to them, even if it wasn't intentional. Even if you made them the super cool hero person. People don't like to be in books. It's weird, I know, but they just don't like it. Bad things can happen to them too. I have two examples. In one NCIS episode, (You know how McGee writes books based on his work right?) there was one crazy guy who was trying to kill Abby and Tony and Gibbs because they were in McGee's book. That actually happens, beleive it or not. Another example comes from the book Inkspell. The author gets read into his story and while he's there he writes songs and stories about a guy called the "Bluejay" who is based on Meggie's dad, Mo. When Mo gets read into the story, everyone thinks he is the Bluejay and lots of people try to kill him. So again, just don't do it. Unless, of course, it's a non-fiction book or a biography then yes, you have to write it about real people. But seriously, don't do it. Look at the previous topic on creating characters and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask!
Thanks for reading!

2 comments:

  1. Lol Your cousin is the first on to comment?? People should reald this blog! the tips are helpful. I <3 NCIS <---just thought i'd share

    ReplyDelete
  2. Lol not a lot of people know about this blog. You should spread the word...

    ReplyDelete

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