Interested in writing for children? Don’t miss this great post on literary agent Jill Corcoran’s blog. While you’re there, check out other useful information for writers. I have heard her speak at conferences. Writers who have her as an agent are very lucky. She is warm, honest, and experienced.
The most important character in your story is the villain. If you find that your story is lacking something, you probably don’t have to look any further than the opposition. If your hero doesn’t have much to overcome, he can’t be much of a hero. The greater the evil he faces, the greater your protagonist will be. Even in stories of man against nature, it can’t just be any storm, it has to be the Perfect Storm. See what I mean? Click below for some great ways to make your opposition more effective–and more original.
Here’s another in a terrific series of posts summarizing basic plots on The Write Practice blog. For a quick review of the bottom line of storytelling, take an hour or so and review the basic plots covered on the site. It may save you years of learning the hard way.
Here are some thoughts on everyone’s favorite occupation–plot smashing. Especially since top book pitches now follow the _____ meets ______ in ________ screenplay convention.
Every story has already been told, many times. Why not just update a favorite? Well, you can, but that’s just a beginning. Click on the link below for important elements to consider.
Make your character commit to action. Read why this is important and how to do it in Kristen Lamb’s blog.
The vogage and return is a very common storytelling structure. It fits classic epic poems as well as children’s fiction. In my case, both this month’s picture book for Julie Hedlund’s 12 x 12 book and a MG fantasy novel in progress for 5 years and counting follow this format.
Click on the link below for a great overview.
About main characters. Screenwriters know about story structure. It is a good idea to listen to them about this. Of course, there are always exceptions, but if you think your book has more than one main character, this post is worth reading.
If you are writing the second book in a series, can you depend on readers knowing everything from the first book? Would be nice, wouldn’t it? But, uh, no. And that’s not all.
Challenges of writing the second book in a series.
If you think about your favorite stories. you will probably notice that the hero or heroine has friends. Where would Don Quixote have been without Sancho Panza, or Dorothy without her three adorable companions? Here’s a great article about sidekicks .