Make readers believe the unbelievable

reading“Making people believe the unbelievable is no trick; it’s work. … Belief and reader absorption come in the details: An overturned tricycle in the gutter of an abandoned neighborhood can stand for everything.” —Stephen King

Write High-Stakes Tension: Are you too close to your characters?

Are you too close to your characters?

You’ve engendered, given traits, and brought your characters to life on the page. It’s not surprising that writers find themselves attached to their characters and are afraid of putting them into complicated situations.

If you’ve created complex and compelling enough characters they will falter and they will hit obstacles. You’re writing a book not a description of the type of friend you’d like.

Think of the most memorable characters in fiction. Jay Gatsby. Elizabeth Bennett. Holden Caulfield. Lisbeth Salander. None of them are perfect. Perfect characters are 2D and forgettable. Continue reading Write High-Stakes Tension: Are you too close to your characters?

Let Dialogue Speak For Itself

Dialogue, in its most natural state, has the ability to move the plot and show character traits, as well as its most basic function: communication. When I read submissions this often marks the difference between a writer that ‘gets it’ and a writer that has a long way to go.

Dialogue must speak for itself. If you have to set up the dialogue before or explain it after you haven’t written good enough dialogue: Continue reading Let Dialogue Speak For Itself