Writing Tools

This part of the website is dedicated to collecting websites, videos and other miscellaneous media outlets dedicated to various aspects of Authorship. Sometimes it's hard, wanting to start and you do all this research but you don't know how to go about processing the information of all these people with all these opinions and here I am just adding fuel to the fire. So this place is to sort out all that research while I go over them and give my own creative input on how I went about using them here, or on my blog, so hope that helps.

Thanks. 

Blog Posts

Conflict Creation

Hey guys! Sorry it's been awhile since I last posted on here. Been working on editing my novel as well as writing articles for Pillowfights which if you haven't heard of them, is sort of a mecca for lifestyle and relationship advice, as writers such as myself give you encouragement to face the chaos of the outside world.

Anyway here are some links you should check out.

Unleash your potential...Whatever that means!

http://www.pillowfights.co.uk/among_the_shadows/item4310/Unleash_your_potentialWhatever_that_means

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

http://www.pillowfights.co.uk/among_the_shadows/item4330/Beauty_is_in_the_eye_of_the_beholder

Create your own Freedom.

http://www.pillowfights.co.uk/among_the_shadows/item4356/Create_your_own_Freedom

Anyway, speaking of facing the outside world, conflict and environment creation is very similar to Character creation but I wanted to elaborate more on creating engaging and thought-provoking conflict within our stories. Without conflict your whole story is pointless. Your characters need to fight for something whether physical, mental and emotional, making your character more dynamic, more three-dimensional to the audience.

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But sensei how do we create amazing conflict and use it in our work?

Well good question my students, first let’s deal with the actual creation. If you have been following my blog so far all the tools I use are within, but I’ll go over them once again since I’m awesome. So for me, I started with characters and used them to build my story off of, but you can start with conflict first and draw your characters from that. So if you are starting with Conflict first, use the same method I used to create Characters but Research at the same time: stories, movies, and the internet are great sources to find conflict, and weave them into your own narrative.

For example, let’s say you are writing a mystery, read the Sherlock books and watch the Sherlock TV show and the Movie - Actually screw research, just watch the Movie for Robert Downey Jr. Maybe the Sherlock stuff isn’t to your taste maybe you’re more dark and brooding as unspeakable crimes haunt the criminals like the works of Edgar Allan Poe. Or more focused on the mystery instead of the characters as you compete in a race to solve the crime before the detective does like the works of Agatha Christie.

Once you have a firm grasp of the type of conflict you want to portray, use the method I used to create Characters and develop five random facts about the type of conflict you want. So for my mystery, I want to go with the style of Edgar Allan Poe since I’m dark and brooding like a teenage Goth. Anyway, let’s start with our five random facts.

1. Set in London England during the 18th century.

I’m no history enthusiasts so I don’t know much about the 18th century so we are off to Google. So during the 18th century was the start of The Industrial Revolution in England. We can use this to create a story, maybe the mystery could be around stolen blueprints or ideas about the next great thing to improve Britain’s way of life. Or maybe the good old inheritance story, where some old noble suddenly died right after he finished his will; handing all his wealth to that one suspicious relative.

2. The mystery revolves around a forbidden love.

Maybe add another genre to the mix. Maybe a romance something like Romeo and Juliet were one of them is the son/daughter of a wealthy businessman while the other is a child of a rival or a peasant. The relationship could be a crutch to hurt the wealthy businessman either financially or through reputation. This is starting to sound a lot like Crimson Peak… I’m obsessed with Tom Hiddleston.

3. The killer has no relationship to the couple.

Like all great mysteries, we have a twist. Instead of the killer being someone between the major characters, the killer is actually an external character - someone mention with no importance, maybe another disgruntled rival or former employee. The struggle between the characters, as they blame each other for the murders reach breaking point through the collapse of the couple’s relationship or an unexpected murder.

Let’s stop there I think you get the point, just use that beautiful brain of yours and with the help of Research and my 5 random facts device, you don’t even need five facts you could write three and put together the basic construct of your story. But it’s easy to create conflict, forbidden love, disgruntled employees, unrequited dreams but how do you actually portray conflict within your work do you start off with it straight away or do you build up to it until it appears at the end.

giphyConflict is quite hard to write and as a newbie writer myself I do not believe I can properly convey how one must go about creating conflict. However, that is not going to stop me from trying. You see writing fiction is not creating a new world and experiences but altering old ones. To twist a reader's assumptions to fit in with your narrative. Let’s say I wrote a story about a floating city, the reader would automatically raise questions on how is it floating? Why is it floating? Is the story set on earth? Or in it set in another part of space or time?

Then the writer comes in to answer those queries.

“Earth in the year 3016 has become a shell of its former self, the overuse of resources and damages to the earth’s environment has disrupted the core causing the land to erode. Scientists have come up with a solution to raise the major cities across the world through the help of Solarium. Concentrated Solar energy that disrupts a gravitational force on an object.”

So to create conflict all we need to do is alter our own experiences, how did you feel when you got your first rejection, how did it feel when you lost your phone, how did it feel getting into a fight with your best friend. All these conflicts can be altered, can be used and be weaved into your narrative; you just need to break down the emotions and study the process of how you dealt with them and then compare or alter the reactions to your characters personality.

So now we have the emotions that are created from conflict, now we need the process of portraying it on to paper. The best way to explain is with the ever convenient jump. A jump is a perfect description of the output of energy within a story. For example, let’s take the breakdown of a relationship. The idle pose is the start of the relationship everything is fine, two people happy to be together. Then the build up, the cracks start to appear, missed dinners, forgotten birthdays. The lift off, fights start to break out over the most mundane of mistakes.

Then we have the break up the height of the conflict, the couple goes their separate ways. The descent is the couple slowly start to remember the good times they had and the realization of how trivial their fights were. The landing is figuring out the problem, the world around them had built up these situations forcing the couple to focus on other matters and not on their relationship. The resting pose is coming to terms with the situation. Maybe they try to mend bridges, or they just stay friends and learn from the experience.

I think the best way to understand or position conflict within your work is to use a graph, that way you will be able to see the ups and downs within your work as well as comparing the highs and lows of several characters within your story. For example, maybe the couple above have reached the beginning stages of the jump, as small cracks appear in their marriage. Only for friends of the couple to break up, both unaware of the chaos in their friend's relationship. They decide to find a way to cure their marriage, either through counseling or taking a vacation from the struggles of life.

So, in conclusion, I’m going to leave you with more questions than answers for you guys to create or develop conflict within your work. Whether you are starting on the main conflict within the story or developing the subtle conflicts, then you need to ask yourself.

First, is there a reason for the conflict?

Has the reader fully grasped the gravitas of the conflict and how the impact of the event will affect the characters within the book and ultimately the reader? Your audience needs to get fully invested in these characters of yours and conflict is the best way to do it so you need to make sure your main conflict is strong while not being overshadowed by smaller conflicts.

and Second, have I built up enough tension or insight to support the conflict?

Has there been enough build up to let the readers learn about the characters and the events before the conflict occurs? Or if you choose to start with conflict is their ways you have set up to portray the damage of the event throughout the book. The graph is just another form of Outlining, it is a visual plan of the tension within your story and you will be able to get a grasp of if you have too much or not enough within your work.

Hopefully, you guys have learned something, another long ass post from me and I don’t understand most of it… and I wrote it. Hopefully, you will get something out of this chaos I called a post and my next post before I restart my quest to become an author is if a story needs a prologue.

See you then.

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Character creation

Hey guys gonna be a long post since character creation is one of the biggest parts of writing a novel, I mean it's kind of obvious why. Anyway, before we start I just wanted to let you guys know that my second article for Pillowfights is out now on their websites. The topic is about how society and the media portray how men show off emotions and what reality is actually like, so please give it a read and tell me what you guys think. the link is below.

http://www.pillowfights.co.uk/among_the_shadows/item4248/Inside_the_mind_of_a_man

Anyway on to the topic at hand, we have developed our frame of mind and have sorted out and put together an array of ideas into a physical and mental plan for our story. But let’s take a break from our quest and talk about the various parts within out novels. There are three things one needs to create or should I say strengthen in order to get to the next step and that is character, environment and conflict creation.

So let’s start with 'Character Creation' first.

Pretty much went into a little detail on the way I created characters in my fourth step on my quest to become an author, but let me go into further detail. If you have been following my steps you would have probably learned that I let my characters lead me instead of me leading them. In other words, I have a basic outline and let my characters find a way to get there instead of writing an advance plan telling me how each chapter will work.

The best way to explain this is through animation. There are two ways an animator animates and the styles are known as straight ahead and pose to pose. Straight ahead is where you have a basic premise of the animation and just start drawing until you have the animation done. While pose to pose is where you draw the major poses within the animation and then slowly break down the poses until you have an animation.

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For example, let’s say you want a character to jump from one side of the screen to the other. Pose to pose means you draw the idle pose then the crouch to build up energy, then the push off, then the height of the jump, fall, landing, settle into the landing and then idle. While straight ahead is more for experienced animators who know about physics and timing, character development and attributes to make the characters actions realistic yet unique. So they can do all the poses above cause they can visualize the action within their mind and put it to paper.

But inexperienced writers can use the straight ahead method if they have strong well-developed characters, and I’ll teach you how.

I think a lot of amateur writers create a character in the wrong direction, we start on the outside in, when it should be the other way around. As human beings, we are idiots, sorry it had to be said, we assume gender, race and religion define differences through stereotypes. But that is wrong, society was built to make those definitions and out of laziness, we believe them.

Sorry went all PC, but PC isn’t a bad thing, it’s just overused, I mean don’t complain, change. Anyway, I created characters from the inside out. I start out with five of the most mundane, random facts about the character and build a personality around those facts. After I’ve built up a strong personality connecting the traits gained from those facts, then and only then, I flip a coin and add a skin color or gender to the character.

Let me give you five random facts.
1. Favorite thing to eat is Sushi.

This could apply to any race, any gender, any religion, the character could be Japanese and love traditional cuisine, or could be from another part of the world and love different cultures, experiencing new things or just loves salmon and avocado.

2. Studying Medicine at Oxford University.

Smart, intelligent able to get into one of the prestige’s universities in the world. Studying medicine shows that they want to help others, whether it’s on the front lines as a doctor or in the lab finding new cures. Now out of laziness, we have made an assumption of this characters skin color and gender, but these two facts can apply to anyone.

3. Unhealthy obsession with Disney movies.

Loves cartoons and movies, could show a childlike innocence, kindness or loneliness as they spend most of their free time watching ‘Frozen’ then hanging out at a bar or pub. Or maybe they wanted to be an artist or animator and was pushed into this course in their life.

4. Has a tattoo of a bouquet of lilies on their shoulder

Could have had a rebellious phase in their teenage years or could have sentimental value for the character. Depending on if the character has more tattoos will imply different personality traits.

5. Sucks at sport and hates exercise, usually eats right (Sushi) to stay in shape.

Unfit or bad reflexes may affect abilities in University since the character is, after all, studying medicine. Or may just has no interest or no time to watch sports and do exercise to keep in shape since they are focused on studies.

So here are our five random facts, we start connecting these ideas, building up a personality of a character along with events and actions the character could portray within your novel. Once the personality is set, then I can add the exterior cause a house without an interior is pretty useless no matter how beautiful the exterior. So Macy Adams is a young woman of African descent, born in Surrey, England. If I started like that, laziness would kick in and you would build assumptions of the character but with the facts above we have something different, something unique.

miyukiayukawabasquash“Macy always wanted to become an artist but when her high school crush, Jessie got sick, she decided to pursue a career as a doctor instead. If she wasn’t at University getting the best grades in the class, she would be at home studying to find a cure for her girlfriend. But she did manage to find some time to hang out with Jessie, so they could watch some cartoons together, showing Macy the dream she should follow and stop torturing herself for her. But Jessie knows Macy won’t stop, she won’t quit until they can live a long and happy life together.”

Fleshed out characters will be able to pull themselves forward, instead of you needing to push them forward. Writing is such a wavering form to teach, there are so many ways to build characters and the way I have written above you are allowed to work backwards, you are allowed to start with skin, gender, religion and favorite smell, but all I’m stating is build up the characters personality and that way you will have little ticks to place within your work and make your story stronger.

Hope that helps you guys, next post will be on conflict development since environment development is pretty much the same as character and usually used for fantasy/Sci-fi based environments since obviously current environments are already set all you need to do is research. That’s it from me see you two weeks from now since this was a pretty long post.

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Quest to become an Author: Step 05 – Too many Ideas?

So we are ready to write our novel, we have done an ample amount of research, collecting notes and ideas. Read stories and done references on historical or technological information. One example I can give you guys on my work is I had to recently find the Egyptian word for ‘mummy’, which is ‘Sah’ meaning ‘royalty’ or ‘nobility’ cause only high ranking officials were mummified. The more you know huh.

Anyway, now we have a whole bunch of ideas, pages upon pages of brainstorming and notetaking and now we have to sort them out and we do that through.

Outlining…

Again I buck the trend when it comes to Outlining, but first, let me explain what outlining is even though again the name is pretty self-explanatory. Outlining is pretty much planning your story, whether its bullet points of a list of events within your book or a general summary of each chapter. A lot of authors would tell the newer ones to Outline, plan your events out like you would directions to a location but like I’ve stated before if I know the location all I need to do is drive.

Now that may sound romantic, letting your characters follow their own paths but the reason for outlining is to avoid detours and getting lost. Everything in your books needs a reason for being there, character development, conflict development, relationship development and with planning, you will be able to avoid waffling (honestly thought this word had something to do with waffles TT_TT).

So in order to not Outline you must need two things...

First is the 'Destination' and second is the 'Preparation'.

Sticking to the driving analogy, no matter which way you go you will reach your destination and hopefully the drive will help bring in new experiences and events, unlocking new locations in your stories journey. But you still need a mental map of the location, and with the help of research and imagination, depending on the story you prepare. You set up waypoints you know about, smaller locations within your journey like the café you always get your morning coffee from or the movie theater where you had your first date. These locations are like major events within your story that lead to your target.

anime girl with car reading map

So, in other words, you need an Outline, at least, a mental one, and you must be super critical, you must have the power to know that you are going off course. I remember writing my story and wrote I think a 5,000-word flashback about one of my characters and I was like is this helping the story forward? Is this developing character, relationship or conflict? The story had stalled and there was only a hint of development for only one character when I could develop more characters in the 5,000-word space. I realized I had made a wrong turn, reversed and change course. I think that was a week’s work thrown away. So, if you lack the fortitude to be critical about your work, willing to throw away things that are not helping the story forward, then write an outline.

An outline would have helped me avoided my 5,000-word mess, but I learned from my mistake and that’s what I see my attempt at a novel, as a learning experience. I’ve stated before I’m saving my trump card story for when I get more experience, I need to develop and learn so much about the world of writing and I think I’ll use an outline on one of my romance novels, yes I have an idea for a romance, but for now since I’m writing a Sci-fi/Fantasy I can be more lucid and try to find my style of writing, my process and hopefully with the help of my blog you guys will find your process too.

Anyway, I wish I could be more helpful on this topic but if I’d had to give advice on Outlining I’d suggest if you’re writing a story you have a lack of experience in, such as the genre, and don’t want to make mistakes, Outline. But if you have a strong idea and understanding of the story and the genre, and are willing to make mistakes in order to learn and find interesting ideas through your own characters progress then don’t outline.

So if you choose to outline check out the website.

https://litreactor.com/columns/8-ways-to-outline-a-novel

They give you a better explanation on why you should outline and if you do choose the path of light, they give you 8 great ways to Outline your work. Maybe in my next story or on a later date I’d write a blog on the different processes so far I like the looks of Free Writing, The Visual Map, and Contextual Preparation. But for now, let’s continue to the next step, creating characters.

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Quest to become an Author: Step 04 – Got any Ideas? Pt02

Nearly forgot to post this week being Easter and the recent release of the Batman vs Superman movie that I’ll be watching today. I will also be blog professionally at the start of April which will be awesome even though I’m nervous as hell and in need of supporters. My column hasn’t been uploaded yet but if you want to have a look around the website http://www.pillowfights.co.uk/ which deals with topics such as relationships, family, friendship, psychology, love & romance to name a few. Anyway as a continual from last week's post here are the two methods I use to create ideas for my novel.

“The Moodboard/Character Creation."

The Moodboard is actually a movie term where directors or script writer collect images and use that as inspiration for the design of the movie’s settings and characters, pretty much a visual brainstorm. I believe this is a great way to generate ideas and also helps with the descriptive text within your work. Character Creation is similar but it involves a singular image, maybe a drawing of your own character or a picture you found on the internet and you branch out the characteristics within the image to add to your work.

I like to visualize my scenes in my head, and with the help of the Moodboard, it makes the visuals stronger, strengthening the way I write as I let the characters lead me. So strong character development is needed between my characters for them to develop their own story. Let me give you an example let’s take a picture of an actress, searched Hollywood actresses and got the beautiful Hermione Granger so I’ll use her as an influence for one of my characters.

maxresdefault (4)Sorry just got lost in her eyes, where was I? Right, Character Creation, so I want Emma Watson to represent my leading lady so let’s start with the features. The light auburn hair, the pale skin, the naturally pink lips and the incredibly dark brown eyes… sorry got lost again, now the demeanor. Like a brainstorm we start connecting ideas her outfit is casual, a one tone cardigan with a few buttons undone, along with the slightly messy curls in her hair and faint hints of makeup around the eyes makes her more the girl you have been neighbors with all your life instead of the head cheerleader.

Last is the external items within the picture, the valley of grass might indicate that she is the outdoorsy type or she lives in the countryside and wants to escape to the city life. A hint of a quilt or blanket behind Emma might make her fashion outdated or quirky, or that she is family oriented as her grandma teaches her how to knit since there is not a lot to do in the countryside. I got way to involved with this picture, anyway here is the last way I create ideas, the thing is there might be a proper name for this process or I might have made it up but I call it.

“Merging."

Merging is pretty easy to explain I mean the word kind of answers itself. Sometimes ideas by themselves don’t work so well, or aren’t strong enough to produce or develop a decent storyline. But if you merge two or three ideas together you might get something pretty interesting. It’s pretty easy to see this within movies, how things like genres, events, and characters merge together to create new and improved stories.

merge-ideas

How about a romantic love story with zombies like the movie ‘Warm Bodies’. Or a cursed band of Zombie Pirates like ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’. Zombies at a wedding, ‘Rec 3: Genesis’. Humorous version the Zombie Apocalypses, ‘Zombieland’ and ‘Shawn of the Dead’, or a hardcore action drama like ‘World War Z’ and ‘The Walking Dead’. All these movies came from joining different ideas which separately are overdone clichés but when you give a little twist to the generic notion you get some pretty interesting outcomes.

But all of this depends on your ability to sort out ideas, your ability to understand different styles and adjust your writing to fit the clash of ideas. Let’s take for example Ninja’s and Aliens. The idea is pretty far-fetched offering more questions than answers towards your goal. Are the Ninja’s fighting against the Aliens. Or are the Aliens, Ninja’s? Where did they learn to become Ninja’s, did the Aliens go to Japan? Or are the Ninja’s in Space? The ideas of Ninja’s and Aliens needs an eccentric style to the clash of such strong ideas, that is why ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ works so well, it’s fun, it weird, it’s just a jumbled mess of ideas stitched together to make something great. But if you look at it as an action drama like Aliens vs. Ninja’s (Yes there is a movie called Aliens vs. Ninja’s don’t watch it) then it’s going to suck.

So all these ways to collect ideas, you could use only one or you could use all or you could find a completely new way to find ideas if I had to recommend a site check out.

http://personalexcellence.co/blog/brainstorming-techniques/

Where they give you 25 Useful Brainstorming Techniques, to make brainstorming more bearable and soon you will have a barrage of ideas you need to sort out. But how will you do that? How do you sort out your ideas and understand what will fit and what won’t. Well, my friends, the best way to do that is outlining and I’ll go over that in my next post.

See you then.

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Quest to become an Author: Step 04 – Got any Ideas? Pt01

In my last post I talked about the reasons you wanted to become a writer and that is because you have this great idea and you want to share it with the world (If it was to become rich and famous then I got some bad news for you son). I started writing because several stories kept playing out in my head and the only way I could release them was to jot them down on paper, and by paper I mean Microsoft Word.

But sometimes we run out of ideas, sometimes we only have a few really amazing kick ass scenes in our mind instead of a feature length movie. Or sometimes we have too many ideas and our feature length movie is 5 hours long and mostly involves scene setting which sad to say I suffer from. I had all these amazing fight scenes but not enough ideas to join them together or give the fighters a reason for fighting. So what did I do to generate these ideas?

Let’s start with having not enough ideas, and in my next post, I’ll deal with having too many ideas and how I sort them out. But for now, I have four ways to generate Ideas so listen up, hey you, I see you procrastinating, pay attention. The first and most obvious way is to…

“Research."

ka92-mangaka-mountain-of-books-anime-picture-5-star-worthy-phi-stars

If you are writing a romance novel, read romance novels and jot down the ideas you like from the books. A lot of people shun away from this method because they believe it’s copying and I’m like if you write word for word then yeah, but an idea is like a grain of sand or a pixel in a painting, it’s just needed to enhance your view of paradise. Or you could search on 'Google' for historical and mythological references to love stories and use those stories to influence your own. People are different, and write differently, this blog is to show you my way of working and yours might be different.

Some of you might start out doing endless amounts of research until you are satisfied that you can write a novel from start to finish without Google or Yahoo, or your Mom. While others have a firm visual on their characters and only do research on stuff like locations and historical events. I’m the later, but that might be because my genre is Sci-fi/Fantasy, where imagination takes precedence over research. But other genres like Drama and Romance need realism and research take precedence. Anyway the second and most used way to generate Ideas is.

“Brainstorming."

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Which I hate. Brainstorming is a double edged sword you get some amazing ideas but you also get some terrible ones and you kind of have to shift through the sand in order to find the right fit. Ideas should not be forced they should be found, characters should fall in love, you shouldn’t make them fall in love. Romance is a great analogy genre, in our story boy meets girl. Good start, generic, could do girl meets girl but screw political correctness. They meet in high school, ah young love, good, good demographic. In the middle of a war, Ok, the cause of a struggle, could start conflict within their relationship. Against dinosaurs… Ok, you have gone too far.

But how are you going to know you have gone too far? Maybe a romance story during a war with dinosaurs might be good. I might call it ‘Tyrannosaurus Ex’ or ‘Raptor my Heart’. Anyway, I’d suggest you brainstorm if you need that little bit of help to build up your already established story. Or if you have no thought what so ever on the story you want to write. This thought must happen after you have written various works beforehand and have run out of material in that beautiful brain of yours. If the only though you have left is “I want to write a thriller,” then merge brainstorming with researching and focus on two or three ideas you find on your journey.

I’ll break this post into two parts as the next part will be on my favorite ways to generate ideas, this post was more to show how to use the more generic attempts at idea collecting. Also, I’m only going to go over four techniques to build ideas and there are a ton more that I have used and this site covers most of the smaller idea builders.

http://personalexcellence.co/blog/brainstorming-techniques/

Hope that helps and that you guys have learned something from my innate ramblings.

I’ll see you next week.

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Quest to become an Author: Step 03 – Write your Good Book!

When I started writing the first thing I did was go to YouTube and search stuff like how to write a novel, or writing novel tips, or sexy cosplays… wait ignore that last bit. Anyway, there are some decent videos dedicated to starting a book for beginners, a few TEDx talks, a couple of shaky videos of authors Q&A and a lot of YouTubers.

But out of all the videos I watched, the one above, I believe is a decent guide to starting a novel, mostly because it follows the same path I took to creating my own work. Scott Sigler gives us five easy steps to help us set up the groundwork towards our goals of writing our first novel. However there are a few parts that I changed but before we go into that, let me give you the five steps in his video.

Step 1: Write every day.

Step 2: Write a “Bad” book first so you learn how to finish.

Step 3: Finish the "Bad" book then put it away for six months.

Step 4: Start writing your “Good” book.

Step 5: After six months get out that "Bad" book, read it, learn where you are weak, and address those weak areas.

Steps one and two sound familiar, oh right they are my step 1 and 2 on my quest. What I loved about this video is in the first bit, Scott tells the viewer that this is not a definite answer to starting, everyone has different views on how to start a future best-seller so look at other sources for knowledge and whatever suits you, add it to your views.

So his step 1 and 2 are mine vice versa. But once we get to step 3, 4 & 5 we have a little change. "Finish the bad book then put it away for six months," the whole six-month thing is so you have a fresh mind when you view your work so it will be easier to find the faults within. But I disagree with this part, don’t put it away for six months read it now and find your faults.

I believe we are our own worst critic or should that be best... Nevermind, if we read our writing again we will see the faults straight away. Maybe I think like that because of the mentality set up in my steps one and two, I’m not going to sugarcoat my writing, I have to be critical, I have to improve. Compare it to the works of the greats or give your work to someone you trust and defend yourself against the swords of criticism.

Once you have a list of discrepancies within your writing, then and only then start writing your good book. The second thing I loved about this video is when he talked about negative comments, snobs telling you that you need professional training or you need to take several classes to develop your writing abilities and his answer for that was spot on.

“Well, Screw those people!”

Writing is one of those things where a person with no tools and a person with all the tools start at the same point and that is with an idea. An idea for a story that plays within your mind, dragons protecting princesses, robots falling in love, a family sitcom about 6 zombies hanging out in the big apple, I call it Friendz. You want to write a novel because you have an idea, a concept, a story trying to break free from the confines of your mind and all you need to do is open up Word (Annoyingly is a tool so kinda throws my analogy of 'no tools' out the window but there are plenty of free writing tools out there and if you don’t like electricity, the good old pen and paper will do) and start typing.

But sometimes people run out of ideas, it’s only natural not all of us can be Stephen King. So next week I’ll post up how to research and generate ideas for your story through four techniques I use, there may be more I should check but I’m lazy.

Anyway, see you next week.

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Quest to become an Author: Step 02 – Write every day!

Welcome to step two if you haven’t read step one why the hell are you here, well no matter this step is pretty self-explanatory. You see the only way you are going to get practice in writing is if you write, and write every day. I know this sounds insane, how am I supposed to write every day, I have work, I have friends, I have a life that involves going outside.

Look! If you want to write a novel or anything for that matter, you will have to allocate some time to your endeavors. Your life may make step one and two more daunting, you have such little time you want to get your main idea up and running the moment it hits the ground. But if you want your novel to have the best start in life, then you have to.

Practice! Practice! Practice!

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I think the first few steps are not to build up your novel but your frame of mind, your priorities to get you to your target. We believe that writing a novel is like climbing a mountain, the goal is so far away, intimidating and treacherous as the trail is littered by the souls of writers who didn’t make it and you usually get frostbite. But with one step at a time, you conserve your energy, you learn and develop easier ways to traverse the mountain and soon, you’ll reach the top in no time.

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"One step at a time!"


No matter how much you write, one page, one paragraph, one sentence, one word, good or bad, right or wrong, you are still on that mountain. Let me explain with a little math, there are 365 days in a year, excluding this one which is a leap year, but anyway 365 days. Now the average novel size is 75 thousand, I don’t care about word count LOTR is like 350 thousand but that was broken into three books, so let’s stick with 75. So with those numbers…

75,000 divide by 365 = rounding down would be 205 words a day

As you climb, the words you write will get easier, you will understand, you will learn. Writing every day will start out slow but you will start a habit and it will get easier. It will become second nature and you’ll be pumping out 205 words or more just like that and before you know it you will be at the top of the mountain with your first draft.

So in conclusion, write as much as you can, put aside maybe 10-15 minutes, maybe after work or during your breakfast, lunch or dinner. Maybe before or after the gym but not after drinks, weird stories come out then… Baileys and Coco-pops never again. Anyway, this skill will grow, you will get faster, you will get better you just need to have that mindset of.

“I will get better, one step at a time,”

Another long post, let me make it easier for you guys, on my quest I did some research on how to start my first novel, and I came across this video by an author called Scott Sigler.

There are some parts I don’t agree with but the basic notion is there so give it a look and I’ll go into more detail in my next post, see you then.

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Quest to become an Author: Step 01 – Write…Badly


Hello fellow readers and writers, welcome to the first post of my new site… well excluding the welcome post, this will be the first dedicated to writing. So let’s start at the beginning, that first step on our journey to become the next J.R.R Tolkien or whatever writer you want to be, I won’t judge, I’d just be disappointed that you didn’t choose J.R.R.T.

Anyway, you guys must be wondering how do I start, Do I research various websites and YouTube videos or do I read copious amounts of novels until I can recite the works of Mills and Boons off by heart. I believe if you ask an author who has been in the same situation that question, you will get an answer along the lines of.

"Well… just write!"

Dude(cause most writers are extras on the Big Lebowski) just write, if you have a story then the words should follow, so don’t be scared, make mistakes and learn from them as you head off on your adventure of fiction. I agree with this to a certain degree, the first step is to write, if you need to know something google it if you don’t know how to write, pick up your favorite book, examine sentence structure and choice of words and emulate that into your work.

But where I tend to deviate from the crowd is don’t just write… write badly.

This is probably the point where you have gone to another site, Marvel might have another trailer for their next movie, but hear me out. I don’t mean actually attempt to write badly I should say know that you are going to write badly. Don’t be emo or any other high school drama clique, just develop the right frame of mind which is.

“This is going to suck but I will get better with practice.”

Practice? I don’t have time for practice, I need to become the greatest author of all time. Well if you want to become the greatest then you have to practice like all things in life. You have this idea you believe to be the next ‘Harry Potter,’ well if you want it to get to that caliber of awesomeness then you have to be patient and work on your writing before you work on your novel.

The first step put away your awesome idea and write another story. It can be anything, short story, script, fanfiction as long as you finish it. My ‘Origin’ story isn’t even my trump card I’m saving that story for when I get more experience and even before Origin’s I wrote a fanfiction novel since characters were already developed, I just needed to create the story.

This helped me find my faults and work on them, did I use unnecessary adjectives, was I writing heavy descriptions and not focusing on character development, was my dialogue forced or felt fake. Due to this, I was able to see the good and the bad in my work, I gave my work to my sister since she was the avid reader and she said I was pretty good with dialogue but I was terrible with grammar and tend to go overboard on the description.

Like most of my posts, sorry about the drivel, but, in conclusion, the first step is to write but develop the mindset that you need to improve day after day. Start by writing your third, fourth or fifth idea for a novel. Or how would you see part two of your favorite movie play out that way you won’t be discouraged since you have the goal of turning your first idea for a novel into the next best thing. This is also to give you the experience to start and finish a story, seeing it to the end will give you that boost that you can do this, instead of seeing your main idea fall to the waste side.

Hope that helps, see you guys on my next post.

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