Storytelling

Five Common Pitfalls For Stories With Deep Ideas

Starfleet and Klingon ships facing off in Star Trek: Discovery

Storytellers love to add deep ideas to their works. A well-crafted adventure tale is fun in the moment, but it’s the thoughtful piece on the nature of human existence that will be remembered. This is a healthy instinct, and audiences do love a deep idea … read more »

When to Narrate a Villain’s Point of View

Through a doorway, Barty Crouch Jr kneels by Voldemort's char

Most writers know that their important protagonists should have the lion’s share of viewpoint scenes. However, some stories need another point of view to communicate information the protagonists don’t know. Often, that point of view comes from the primary antagonist. Unfortunately, using a villain’s point … read more »

161 – Best and Worst Reveals

The Mythcreant Podcast

A good reveal can be the high point of a story, but a bad reveal can ruin everything. The reveal is a delicate art, and that’s what we’re talking about today. We each discuss some of our favorite and least favorite reveals, in the hopes … read more »

160 – Cyberpunk Vs Technology

The Mythcreant Podcast

A few weeks ago we talked about how space opera has held up in the face of advancing technology and a changing culture. This week we’re giving cyberpunk the same treatment. Because cyberpunk is almost always near future, it’s particularly vulnerable to the passage of … read more »

The One Big Thing That Most Manuscripts Lack

I’ll admit it: my title is pretty sensationalist. But I can’t bring enough attention to this issue. When we’re hired to do content editing, 95% of the manuscripts we look at need significant work in this area. Before we look at their work, most writers have … read more »

158 – Candy and Spinach

The Mythcreant Podcast

In the ancient days of 2013, Chris coined the terms “candy” and “spinach” to describe the way characters need to be cool but also have problems. This week, in the far future of 2018, we take another look. How much candy should a character have? … read more »

Constructing a Compelling Romance

Anna and Kristoff from Disney's Frozen

When done well, romance not only makes stories feel deeper and more meaningful but also gives the audience another reason to turn the page. Unfortunately, it’s easy to jump into writing a romance without thinking it through. And if the romance isn’t setup well, it … read more »

Using Your Conlang Without Ruining Your Story

Octavia Blake from the 100 sits before a fire.

Years back, I wrote some rules for using fake words. Some people grumbled that it banned writers from using conlangs (constructed languages) altogether, and that’s not far from the truth. The bottom line is that your conlang won’t give your audience the same joy it … read more »

Seven Recipes for Heroes to Win Desperate Fights

The great ocean spirit towers over a building.

Grasping victory from the jaws of defeat makes a delicious ending. But after you establish your heroes can’t survive the millions of zombies swarming their cabin or overpower the villain who explodes cities with their mind, how can you create a satisfying victory? Well, you … read more »

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