Knowing Your Characters

Anonymous asked: “When would you say is the best time to figure out your characters? Like, before the first draft, during the rough draft, or after the rough draft?”

I think this really depends on the character. Some characters you will just know right away and writing about them will come easily, but others will be more difficult. They might take a lot of editing over various drafts - I think it’s natural to expect editing for most characters. I think I know my protagonist at the very least by the end of the first draft. I might not know the other characters perfectly, but that just takes time and attention. 

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Comic dub of an Overwatch fancomic by @thepigeongazette - featuring the voices of Tiana Camacho as Mercy, and myself as Soldier 76 and Hanzo! This comic dub was done using a brand new copy of VEGAS Pro 14, purchased for a discount thanks to the Steam sale, woo! Finally, I’ve got a video editor that’s a little bit less on the “released in 2009” side! Of course, everything looks mostly the same, but I’m looking forward to poking around some of the new(er) features; including UNLIMITED VIDEO TRACKS! Only having four tracks maximum on my old copy of VEGAS produced some nifty headaches at times, let me tell you!

If you enjoyed that, why not support me on ko-fi or watch some of my other Overwatch comic dubs?
Love Bite
Fly On The Wall
The Reunion

Check out the full playlist here!

Describing Character Appearances

Anonymous asked: “Do you have any tips on how to describe characters effectively? I always find myself dumping a paragraph on their appearance the moment they appear which often really halts the action.”

Even in great manuscripts, character descriptions can come off pretty clunky. Some writers will get pretty creative to minimize that aspect of it, but it’s usually there to some degree no matter what. Though character descriptions might bog down the writing to some extent, I know they’re necessary. As a reader, I would feel that something is missing if a character wasn’t adequately described. With that said, descriptions do not have to be long, just long enough to help the reader picture him or her. 

There are a few ways strategies to describing characters that can help avoid that long description dump at the first sight of a new character:

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Writing Living, Breathing Characters

“When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.”
― Ernest Hemingway, Death in the Afternoon

Sometimes this is the easiest skill to forget! I find when talking to other writers about this, it is especially muddled when writing fan fiction - though there’s a lot more thought that has to go into previously established characters constructed by someone else in writing them and making them still feel real - mostly because it’s harder to know “everything” about them. Anyway, I am going to talk today about how lately I’ve been going about the process of writing characters.

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First Look: The Porsche 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series

The new 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series from Porsche is the most powerful and unique 911 Turbo S ever. The Coupé provides 446 kW (607 hp) and is limited to 500 units worldwide. In addition to a power increase of 27 hp, the 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series is distinct from the standard 911 Turbo S due to its unique design, higher-quality materials and luxurious details. 

The sports car is being intricately finished by hand in the new Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur at the headquarters in Zuffenhausen. Previously known as “Porsche Exclusive”, the in-house workshop specializes in tailoring to customer wishes, as well as being responsible for limited-edition series. And for the first time ever, Porsche customers can have the matching chronograph from Porsche Design configured in the same design as their sports car.

Plotting with Flawed Characters

Anonymous asked: “Do you have any tips for writing good and believable flaws for characters and making them effect the plot?” 

All good characters are flawed in some way. Even if they are good and kind people, no one is perfect and this rule is especially true for fictional characters. Flaws do not always have to be big and in your face. They can be smaller and relatable. 

Some people will say that the character’s flaws should work directly against him in his pursuit of his goal, but I don’t think that is necessarily true. It should however effect how he progresses to his goals. When trying to connect character flaws and plots, you can either know the plot and figure out how the character will get tripped up along the way or come up with the character and try to see how that could hinder him in working towards his goals. 

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Struggling to Start a Novel

Anonymous asked: “I really want to start writing a book that I’ve had ideas for rolling around in my mind for a while now. The only problem is I can’t find the motivation to start writing and I’m struggling with getting started. It feels like my imagination is dying!”

Starting a novel can sometimes be intimidating. It’s not physically difficult, but mentally you might face some unexpected roadblocks. I can’t say this is something I’ve ever particularly worried about, but it happens. You get in your head and psych yourself out. You love the idea you’ve been working on and feel there’s a lot riding on it when it comes to putting it on the page. 

The secret to getting over this feeling: take a deep breath and remind yourself that this isn’t the first chapter, this is the first draft. No one will know what you’re writing or if you’re writing anything great. In fact, you can even tell yourself, your idea’s not perfect. It needs work still. Even say, this is just for fun. We’ll see where this goes

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Alien Draco commissioned by @jackwhitesgirl !

“Malfoy, you don’t honestly think you can keep this up can you? She will find out eventually you know. She’s a smart one.” Blaise leaned his head back to rest on Pansy’s stomach, watching as Draco touched his cheek making sure the glamour stuck; concealing all of his markings underneath.

“I intend to keep it up whenever I am with her, that is the goal isn’t it? To seduce and claim? How do you expect me to do that with a face like this? It isn’t normal here Blaise. Nothing about us is normal!” He hissed, raking a newly glamoured hand through his unruly silver hair.

“I understand that Draco bu-”

“No, we have a mission. One that was entrusted to us and I intend to follow it. This is the only way.” Sighing he looked at his reflection once more.

I just hope it will be enough…

From The Ones Who Heard by @jackwhitesgirl

Plotting the Middle

Anonymous asked: “Do you have any advice for someone who struggles with scene writing or continuing a story? I’ve often had trouble with writing the middle parts of a story even though sometimes I already have the beginning and ending planned out. I feel like all the scenes I put in lack creativity and it leads me to having a mediocre storyline.”

So many writers get stuck on the middle. I understand why, but also, to some degree it takes writing something that will surprise both you and the reader to sort of breathe a new interest back into it. 

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Comic dub of an Overwatch fancomic by @robohero - featuring the voice of @totalspiffage as Lena Oxton and Amelie Lacroix! Honestly though, that just sounds like a poutine sandwich, which sounds absolutely DIVINE

If you enjoyed that, why not watch some of my other Overwatch comic dubs?
Widowmaker’s Birthday
When Charity Livestreams Go Wrong
My Home Was a Person

Check out the full playlist here!

Creating Titles

Anonymous asked: “How do you come up with a title for you story or novel?”

In my experience, titles for stories are something writers often go into a project knowing. I wouldn’t say this is always true, though many great titles from authors I’ve asked simply just popped into their heads - or that’s what they claim anyway. I believe it. It seems like such a minor thing after all, so why would anyone lie?

I also have talked to writers who struggle with titles. For me, it’s hit or miss. Some projects just have a title. Others don’t. I once titled something so terribly that all of my readers asked me to change it, almost unanimously. It wasn’t that bad of a title, but it wasn’t particularly great either. I ended up changing it to something that I didn’t particularly care for, but after awhile now, I know that is a much better title. There are a few ways to come up with titles.

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