August, 2014

Storytelling

How to Get Fans to Slash Your Characters

BBC's Merlin probably would have been canceled if not for its slashing fanbase.

Did you know you can inspire a passionate fanbase who will spend countless hours creating free advertising material for your story? And that those same people will then post their advertising – for free – in public places online where even more passionate fans will see it? Read more »

Analysis

Five Rules for Retelling Old Stories

maleficent-now-and-then

Humans have been retelling old stories for as long as there have been old stories to retell, as the current plethora of Hollywood remakes can attest. On its own, this isn’t a surprise. There are only so many kinds of stories, and it’s much easier … read more »

Storytelling

Is It Plot?

monster_hunting_by_zombiehunterallen

New storytellers often have trouble telling the difference between “things happening” and “a story unfolding.” Without the ability to turn events into plots, there is no story, and audience will quickly become bored and spend their time elsewhere. Luckily, plots only need a few basic … read more »

Storytelling

How to Create an Unhappy Ending

The light at the end of the tunnel in Pan's Labyrinth

Throughout your story, your audience will cheer for your hero as she struggles against the villains. There will be many losses and gains, until it’s time for the final battle. You know your audience will leave satisfied if your hero knocks the bad guy out of the park. But what if you want her to fail? Read more »

Worldbuilding

Obeying the Celestial Speed Limit

"They've gone into plaid!" - Spaceballs demonstrates the ridiculousness of faster than light travel.

As a genre, science fiction frequently runs roughshod over the hard limits of the universe as we currently understand them. Above all else, science fiction writers consistently forget, hand wave away, or blatantly ignore what is perhaps the most foundational rule in the universe: nothing … read more »