Category Archives: writer’s notes

creating characters, part 6: choosing a character arc

In the first 5 parts of this series we looked at the early stages of the process of creating a fictional character, which got us to combining a few archetypes to form the nucleus or chassis of the character. Now … Continue reading

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Doomsday or Dawnsday?

I forget exactly why I bought the book The Population Puzzle: Overcrowding and Stress Among Animals and Men by A. H. “Lee” Drummond, Jr., in October 2009, but buy it and read it I did. It will have been part … Continue reading

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creating characters, part 5: combining archetypes

I’ve been sharing my discoveries about the art of character creation in storytelling. The idea here is to build characters from the inside out, to make vital, interesting characters from scratch instead of trying to create characters based purely on … Continue reading

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creating characters, part 4: story archetypes

In part 3 I described how to start building a character by snapping together 2 different kinds of archetype: a heroic archetype, using the book The Complete Writer’s Guide to Heroes & Heroines: Sixteen Master Archetypes by Tami D. Cowden, … Continue reading

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creating characters, part 3

Welcome to another installment of my character-creation process for storytelling. I started out by calling the series “creating characters in epic fiction,” but really I’m talking about creating characters in general, so I have shortened my title accordingly. I would … Continue reading

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creating characters in epic fiction, part 2

Character creation is one of the most difficult and demanding tasks in the art of storytelling. Some people have a talent for it—I think Charles Dickens was one of these—while the rest of us have to stretch out a thinner … Continue reading

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creating characters in epic fiction, part 1

I’ve been writing for a long time, and I do it professionally, but nonetheless I regard myself as a student of the craft rather than some kind of master of it. So if you’re a writer, or perhaps a deep … Continue reading

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developing a story

Once you’ve worked out what story is, it’s time to figure out how to write one. This part-developing a story-isn’t easy; for some of us, it can take longer than the natural human lifespan. But now, more than ever before, … Continue reading

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what does story mean, anyway?

Storytelling became something of a dirty word in the 20th century, at least among writers of serious fiction. It was seen as the concern of lesser, commercial writers. I’m not sure things are changing even now, but in this serious writer’s … Continue reading

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