Storytelling

Five Traits of a Winning Concept

While plot and character are essential to stories, many works become popular because they have a great concept, like an evil and seductive gold ring or an encyclopedia for hitchhiking the galaxy. What makes a great concept? Ask yourself if your idea has these five … read more »

Six More Character Archetypes to Ditch

Bad characters abound in our media, threatening to overwhelm our bastions of good storytelling. Or at least that’s how it can seem when you turn on the TV or flip through a random book. Many of these characters come from flawed archetypes that writers use … read more »

Five Symbolic Motifs for Mystical Characters

Symbolism creates another realm of meaning to explore. The following symbolic motifs feature ways we re-imagine our natural world, making them wonderful for bestowing ancient mysticism on your characters or simply adding playfulness to your story. Read more »

Do Characters Need to Be Likable?

Woman with Halo

The other day, reader Ethan Michael asked us this: I’m writing my first book and have already plotted the story, but when I take to the internet to see how to make a character likable or if it’s important, I find numerous articles saying not … read more »

How to Personify the Seven Deadly Sins

The seven deadly sins are classic examples of immorality, and it’s fun to bring them to life within your characters. However, storytellers can’t just tell the audience that a character embodies greed or lust; they need to show those traits in action. Characters exhibit them … read more »

The Seven Ingredients of an Amazing Climax

More than any other moment, the climax of your story determines whether your audience will walk away feeling satisfied with your work. A story that’s great until its lackluster finish is considered a terrible flop, while one that’s subpar until its fantastic finish will be … read more »

Five Ways to Make Sure Your Ending Has No Payoff

Traditional* wisdom says that there should be some kind of payoff at the end of a story. Typically called the denouement, it’s the point where everything comes together and leaves the reader satisfied. To heck with that! You’re a beautiful and unique snowflake; you don’t … read more »

Four Ways to Jump-Start a Slow Beginning

Most of us know it’s better to jump into the action right when our story opens, but that’s more easily said than done. Sometimes the main conflict requires setup or the main character’s arc needs the context of their day-to-day life. How do you implement … read more »

Why Social Justice Is Intrinsic to Storytelling

I suspect more than one reader of Mythcreants has wondered why we don’t just stick to the technical advice and avoid all that political stuff. Why are articles with wording exercises and obscure weapons intermixed with long rants on gender equality and unjustified violence? It’s … read more »

51 – Good and Bad Beginnings

The Mythcreant Podcast

Chris, Mike, and Oren discuss what a good beginning should accomplish. They analyze their favorite and least favorite openings, and describe different opening techniques. Mike raves about military scifi, Chris rants about unnecessary framing devices, and Oren actually defends something from criticism. Read more »

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