Storytelling

Do I Have to Kill One of My Protagonists?

questions and answer talk bubbles

Hello. I have been reading your character death articles, and it has made me think about my own characters in my own story. I originally was gonna have one character death, but her death was unnecessarily brutal and did not serve a purpose (the true … read more »

Five Arab and Muslim Stereotypes to Avoid

Discrimination against Muslims, especially Arab Muslims, is often attributed to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. However, the truth is that Islamophobia goes back centuries before that. From 18th-century oil paintings of scantily clad harem women to modern TV dramas, fiction has a long … read more »

How Do I Depict a Newly Blind Character?

questions and answer talk bubbles

I have a character who recently got blinded and now has to deal with what that means. How can I show him struggling and adapting to his new life without caricaturing or stereotyping the experiences of blind people and blindness in general? In addition, my … read more »

Narration Makeover: Creating Tension

Mark Watney from The Martian digging himself out of some Martian soil

We’ve discussed creating tension at a big-picture level many times. However, it’s not enough to have a big-picture plan; tension must also be brought out in the narration. While the bestselling books I critique almost always have tense narration covered, manuscripts often don’t. Let’s help … read more »