Conflict

Podcast

274 – Making Conflict Matter

The Mythcreant Podcast

You’ve done the work of adding sword fights, epic battles, and dramatic arguments. Your characters always have something they want, no matter how minor the scene. And yet, you’re still having difficulty making readers care. Congratulations, you’re having difficulty making your conflicts matter, and you’re … read more »

Storytelling

Five Common Reasons Tension Is Missing

kitten yawning over book

You’ve added lots of conflict to your story, but readers are still telling you it’s boring. What gives? Unfortunately, a number of different things can cause this problem. To help you troubleshoot, let’s go over some common reasons that tension might be missing. Read more »

Storytelling

Six Tips for Avoiding Repetitive Conflict

Two hartebeests fighting for territory.

Conflict is, as we never get tired of saying, critical to stories. It’s what creates stakes, tension, and satisfaction, what keeps us turning the page to see what happens next. But have you ever felt like you were reading the same conflict over and over … read more »

Analysis

Seven Stories With Contrived Character Conflict

Conflict between characters is a vital tool of storytelling, but it can also be tricky, especially when both characters are on Team Good. Authors often have difficulty constructing conflicts where neither character is obviously at fault, or they have difficulty dealing with the implications when … read more »

Storytelling

Filling In Your Story’s Middle

A tiny person stands in the center of a magical book.

Writers often know where their stories start and end but draw a blank when it comes to all the stuff in between. And unfortunately, common plot structures like the hero’s journey aren’t as helpful as they seem. While they provide a rhythm of success and … read more »

Q&A

How Should I Alternate Action Scenes?

questions and answer talk bubbles

Hi! Very general question on plotting, but… is there anything in particular one should think of when alternating between calmer parts of a novel and more action-filled parts? I’ve really tried to take all the advice on how every chapter should have conflict etc., and … read more »

Commentary

Cheap Depictions of Bullying Are Now on Our Hit List

An older boy pins a younger boy against an aquarium tank.

We’ve all seen it countless times: the good-looking and talented protagonist goes to school, only to be physically assaulted by villainous children.  These bullies don’t like the protagonist because they’re new to the school, or their parent is dead, or they’re different in some invisible … read more »

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