twh replies

talesfromthebadyears  asked:

How can I write a prophecy without giving away the plot? If that's possible.

The fun thing about prophecies is they almost never turn out the way you want them to or expect them to. One of the most basic things to understand about prophecies is that wording is everything. Every prophecy ever conceived has a bleep ton of double speak, and allusion and riddle. So writing a prophecy doesn’t inherently give away anything because there’s always a twist. Another thing to think about is peoples’ reactions to prophecies. Most people will try to influence the outcome in some way. Take Oedipus’ parents. They tried to kill their baby to keep it from coming true, and it was that abandonment that allowed the prophecy to come true. So to answer your question there are a few ways:

1) wording: make it ambiguous or riddle like or even just a bunch of mumbo-jumbo

2) human involvement: make the prophecy so clear that it can’t possibly be misunderstood, and then throw humans into the mix. They can mess it up or cause it to come true and that will give readers a sense of adventure and tension.

Hope that helped.

Happy writing,

-B

P.S. I love your handle. Herrigan and Lowdermilk are the best.

sunflowerofdoom-deactivated2016  asked:

I want to create a book with fictional charaters, but I don't want to get to the "vampire/werewolf" cliché... Can you help me? :)

Fiction doesn’t necessarily mean supernatural. Fiction is just any story you make up. It can be about anything as long as it isn’t based on a true story or a historic event. However, I understand the desire to write something non-realistic. One of the best things to do is ask yourself a lot of “what if” questions. What if this happened to this person? What if this as true about the world? What if this situation had ended differently? Another thing to do is look up prompts. There are tons of them everywhere. Find one you like and go for it. If it doesn’t work try again. If it does keep going!  You could also try looking at your favorite genres, authors, themes, etc and try to do something like them. Don’t plagiarize of course, but try to emulate them. By getting a feel for how and what they write you can maybe come up with some ideas of your own.

Happy Writing,

-B

acehefner  asked:

Ok. I'm doing a story with my character, Castro, having control over shadows. Like moving through them, summoning, the whole shebang. Any myths or legends and crap about darkness and such? Thanks

Well there are tons of gods and the like who dwell in shadow, but controlling them/using them as portals isn’t as common. There’s Erebus (the greek god of darkness,) there are shadow people, and a couple others, but I would look into super heroes/villains. There are a lot who have the power of umbrakinesis or shadow manipulation. The most prominent one is The Shade, but there are others like Jordan Lewis and Gorr the God Butcher. There wikipedia page on Darkness Manipulation is a great resource for getting started.

http://powerlisting.wikia.com/wiki/Darkness_Manipulation

Happy Writing,

-B

ineededathing  asked:

I've been wondering how someone would go about maybe creating a whole new language. Obviously it would be difficult, but do you happen to have any tips?

Well the first thing to do is figure out what kind of language you want it to be. There are three basic kinds of language: pictographic (where a picture means a word or a few different words,) syllabary (where you have a set number of syllables and you use them to create the language,) or an alphabetic (when there’s an alphabet.) The easiest way of course is just to substitute each English letter and make a language that way. But of course that’s up to you. Here’s a couple links to help you on your way.

http://www.wikihow.com/Create-a-Language

http://www.zompist.com/kit.html

http://www.councilofelrond.com/subject/how-to-create-your-own-language/

Happy Writing,

-B

anonymous asked:

How do I title? I'm completely lost.

Yes. I think titles are an underrated and under-discussed headache for writers.  You are not alone in your title-related frustrations, anon.

So how do you come up with a title?

The truth is, it’s completely up to you.  I’ve sat in many creative writing workshops and I don’t actually remember anyone ever questioning the title a writer gives his/her piece.  Titles, in my experience anyway, are completely free rein.

But there is such a thing as a “good title” and some titles are better than others.  So, to answer your question, anon, allow me to delve into my idea of a good title.

Firstly, I believe that titles have two distinct functions: to embody and attract. Your work’s title must represent your entire piece and, at the same time, be compelling enough to attract curiosity.  Your title will (potentially) be displayed alongside other titles on bookshelves or in tables of content. You’d want your title to hold it’s own alongside others.  

How you choose to go about doing this is entirely up to you.  Personally, I like to review a piece after I’ve written it (yes, titles are the last thing on a page for me) and ask myself “what concrete object/image in this story embodies this story?”. For example, Nikolai Gogol’s “The Overcoat” is about a man and, obviously, an overcoat (but still, so much more than that).  Arthur Conan Doyle titles his Sherlock Holmes stories in pretty much the same way (“the Hound of the Baskervilles”, “A Scandal in Bohemia”, “The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle”).

But there are tons of brilliant titles that do not follow this mold.  Ford Madox Ford’s title “Some Do Not…” refers to a specific concept initially mentioned in passing in the novel that reveals its significance to the narrative (in a very subtle way) only in the end.  The sixth chapter of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit” entitled “Out of the Frying Pan Into the Fire” is brilliant in its literal and figurative significance to the chapter.

In the end, how you wish to name your piece is entirely up to you.  No one can really tell you how to do it.  The best way is to just do it and see where you end up.

Hope that helps!

-A

anonymous asked:

When writing, how would you describe someone's looks ? With out totally just stamping it in with a couple of sentences. Like, I don't want to have a section of my book where I describe what everyone looks like, I want to make it roll in. Not say the persons name & then the description of them. Help any ?

When it comes to character, I find Chuck Wendig’s advice to be indispensable.  

For character descriptions, Chuck says, keep it to a 100-words-or-less.  Stick to a single feature or visual impression.  More importantly though, make sure that your description breaks the status quo.  Shake it up.  Old ladies that smell like fried circuitry are more memorable that old ladies with grey hair.

The small size of the character’s physical description makes it easier to insert into the narrative of bigger things such as action or emotion.  You don’t have to dedicate a whole chunk of your story to a sentence or two.

Hope this helps!

- A

In response to this post about creepy/horror music, here’s some suggestions from our followers:

theralphabet answered: Clint Mansell’s Requiem for a Dream soundtrack is perfect to inspire a decent into madness. Not a traditional horror film but whatev’s :)

sctennessee said: Akira Yamaoka (composer for the Silent Hill soundtracks) and Crystal Castles. Very atmospheric.

authorman94 answered: Some creepy classical musical like Night on the Bare Mountain or Dream of a Witche’s Sabbath, but that’s just my suggestion. :)

ilostmyhopetothecia answered: Any string quartet cover of a metal song. Try, “Raining Blood” by Slayer. 

othersidhe said: Some people listen to the opposite, upbeat happy music. It’s all about your perspective.

storystormer said: Best creepy music I’ve found is the album ‘Halloween’, by the artist Two Steps from Hell. It’s mainly chilling instrumental, and perfect for listening to while writing a horror story or something of that sort :)

mettalovespokemon answered: Renard has a VERY creepy album, called “Silence”. it’s available for free download at Lapfoxtrax.com just click the Vulpvibe link and scroll

firstdove15 answered: Sand Castle and Still Doll by Kanon

arathe answered: THIS IS SO SERENDIPITOUS I’ve been all over a perfect song today: Oh Death by Jen Titus

such-a-spacecase answered: I suggest the soundtrack for The Road, composed by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis. Always scares the hell out of me, especially “The Cellar.”

meetmedownatthebigyellowjoint answered: SILENT HILL SOUNDTRACK

ai-ga-mawaru answered: Perfect Blue’s soundtrack is perfect for that as well.

verbivore8642 answered: Oh, you should DEFINITELY listen to the soundtrack of Requiem for a Dream. Classic “thriller” thematic music!

anonymous asked:

Any tip of getting inspiration?

The most wonderful thing about writing is getting that first seed of an awesome idea! There’s a rush to it when you first start to think “what if” and your mind runs wild. As for getting inspiration the best thing to do is be open to it. Inspiration can come from anywhere. A person you see on the street. A magazine article you read. A song. A picture. ANYTHING! However, if you’re trying to speed up the process try finding prompts/writing exercises. Here are some good sites for that:

http://www.writersdigest.com/prompts

http://creativewritingprompts.com/

http://www.creative-writing-now.com/story-starters.html

http://dragonwritingprompts.blogsome.com/category/extras/tips/character-development/

Happy Writing,

-B

anonymous asked:

are there particular steps to creating lore? i need (and want) to have a firm history in my story for it to work out properly.

Lore by definition is a body of traditions and knowledge held by a particular group. Now, most traditions come from some sort of religion which is based on gods and heroes. So one of your first steps is to create gods, heroes, and mythology surrounding those characters. As an RPG player I can attest to the fact that creating a pantheon can be really hard. However, there is one key question that every god, hero and story is based on: What is the most important? Here are a few ways to make it easier, and they all start from different points.

The first option is starting with people. If you like making characters and backstories you’re halfway there. The other half is knowing what is important to them. Once you have that you can create gods and heroes that symbolize those ideals. For example a character who is a hunter would worship a god of game and balance. Whereas a soldier might worship a deity who thrives on battle and bloodshed.

The second is Geography. If you’re more of a world builder think of the places you have set up and figure out what would be crucial to the people living in those places. For example people living in a desert would have drastically different morals and ideals from a sea faring community.

The third is just the general gods and goddesses. Look around you and think of the big things in life. Almost all civilizations have deities for things like the sun, and oceans and forests. figure out which ones are the most important to you, your world and your characters and create deities for those.

Once you have the pantheon you can come up with how they interact and how that would affect the stories of that world. Try giving the gods and goddesses conflicting character traits or traits that coincide with their domain. That will help them to clash or cooperate and create interesting tales of their encounters.

Happy writing,

-B

anonymous asked:

How to write from a murderer's perspective and not give away that they're the murderer?

Ah. That’s a pretty brilliant thing you’re doing there, Anon.

I’ve seen this particular trick pulled off once in a novella called Smaller and Smaller Circles by F.H. Batacan(if there’s any way for you to get your hands on a copy of this book, do so).  What happens in this book is that the reader is given glimpses into the events in the book as they happen to the murderer the police are trying to catch.  They’re very short, sparse moments though.  Just enough to get the reader excited but not long enough to reveal too much about the murderer.  

A lot also rests in the characteristics of the murderer.  For example, in SaSC, the murderer was mentally unstable.  This meant that the portions of text in his perspective were skewed, broken up, and just really really confusing.  It worked though.  The reader is scared of the murderer and is just itching to finally know who he is.

I cite this text because it’s a model you can work off of.  But then I don’t really know what kind of story you want to write and what your murderer is like so I can only make suggestions to help you along the way.  What you’re doing is setting up a very delicate game of cat-and-mouse with your reader.  You are essentially taunting them by dangling the carrot on the string just a little bit closer. Having said this, I think it’s imperative that you know your murderer font-to-back.  Know enough unimportant details so that you have a lot to hide the important details in, if you catch my drift.  Likewise, you can hide your murderer in a crowd of people just like him.  Think “where better to hide a tree than in the woods?” kind of thing.  Also, do all the obvious things (have the murderer deny being part of the murder, etc.)

Honestly, I’m struggling a bit here but I hope that helped.  Feel free to send in another ask if you’ve got more questions, Anon.  And good luck with this.  It’s going to be awesome.

- A 

anonymous asked:

Do you have any advice on writing about dragons? It's very important for the world that I created.

One of THE COOLEST things about dragons is they have been found in almost every culture around the world even though global communication didn’t exist. That means one of two things. Either everyone thought “Hey. What if there was a giant lizard/worm creature that could eat livestock whole?” or (and this is the cool bit) dragons actually existed.

Sorry. My geek out is over. To answer your question writing dragons is incredibly easy because there are so many kinds of dragon or dragon-y creatures from so many mythologies. All you have to do is find a dragon you like and Fing Fang Foom (See what I did there?) you have your dragons. What’s even cooler is that all dragons have similar characteristics, depending on the species you pick, so you can even make up your own dragon as long as it is recognizable as a dragon.

Now as far as writing them goes all you have to do is treat them like any other creature. Describe them, their actions and how people react to them using fitting words and terms and you’ve got your story. Something to look into though is the species (draconic, wyrm, wyvern, etc.) and the color of the dragon. In mythology the dragon’s color usually determined the kind of dragon it was.

Here are some links to help get you thinking about dragons:

Spiderwick Chronicles

Harry Potter

How to Train Your Dragon

Mythology/Folklore

Happy Writing,

-B

anonymous asked:

How does one use -whom- and -who- correctly?

http://www.grammarbook.com/grammar/whovwhom.asp

Who vs. Whom


Rule

Use the he/him method to decide which word is correct.
he = who
him = whom

Examples:
Who/Whom wrote the letter?
He wrote the letter. Therefore, who is correct.
For who/whom should I vote?
Should I vote for him? Therefore, whom is correct.
We all know who/whom pulled that prank.
This sentence contains two clauses: We all know and who/whom pulled that prank. We are interested in the second clause because it contains the who/whom. He pulled that prank. Therefore, who is correct. (Are you starting to sound like a hooting owl yet?)
We want to know on who/whom the prank was pulled.
This sentence contains two clauses: We want to know and the prank was pulled on who/whom. Again, we are interested in the second clause because it contains the who/whom. The prank was pulled on him. Therefore, whom is correct.

EDIT: What part of the sentence are you using who/whom in?

Who (subject)
Whom (object)

~ SC

falloutguy78  asked:

What are some other poisonous plants and herbs? I'm thinking things along the lines of foxglove.

Some of the more common ones are oleander, monkshood, bleeding heart, elderberry, nightshade, hemlock and jimson weed. However, those are just the popular ones. There are some plants where some parts are ok and some parts are not. There are plenty of places to look that will tell you about poisonous plants. Here are some links to get you started.

https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/earthkind/landscape/poisonous-plants-resources/common-poisonous-plants-and-plant-parts/

http://www.livescience.com/11356-top-10-poisonous-plants.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_poisonous_plants

http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/plants/

Happy Writing,

-B

beta-pop  asked:

I think lay v lie can get really confusing. Any tips on when I should use one and not the other?

Lay vs Lie is one of the most annoying and confusing things for the grammatically disoriented. And the fact that you have to change the tense on them is even more annoying. However, changing the tense doesn’t change the meaning of the words. In any tense Lay is something you do to something else. You LAY the book on the table. Lie is something you do to yourself. You LIE on the table. An easy way to remember is the phrase “lay it on me.” You use LAY because you require another person to lay the information on you.

Happy Writing,

-B

miyomika  asked:

I was told that describing clothing is the domain of "the most horrible of amateur writers", but still I believe, that doing that may help express some parts of characters' personality, even though they are not bound to fashion industry in any extent. What is your opinion about applying certain ways of clothing to certain heroes and heroines?

One of my favorite creative writing professors at school used to say “Any rule can be broken as long as it’s done brilliantly.” That being said I think there are some merely clever ways to break this “rule.” Describing clothing can be helpful in certain situations. For example if the character is trying to go into hiding describing the fact that he is in a trench coat and a baseball cap might come in handy. Or if someone sees another person from far off and can only make out clothing it might be interesting to see what they’re wearing and get a feel for the person they’re seeing. I think the key here is to avoid getting too bogged down in description. You can say she slipped on a pair of jeans and a t shirt before leaving the house, but you don’t want to spend 5 pages showing her trying on every scrap of clothing in her closet. It’s mostly a matter of when and how much, but it is by no means a rule that NO ONE is allowed to describe clothing EVER! Try playing around with different amounts of description and see what flows best to you.

Happy Writing,

-B

anonymous asked:

How could someone go mute? My character goes mute but i don't know how? Can it be from a sickness?

Oh, this is a fun one~

I actually had an OC who was mute, but I haven’t written her in a long while… Anyways!

Muteness isn’t really caused by sickness. It can happen at birth, but is linked with deafness as well because people who can’t hear from birth may not be able to articulate words correctly, but that’s more related to someone who is deaf-mute rather than simply mute. Muteness is also sometimes linked to Autism, but if your character is going mute, that’s not a likely option.

Someone could go mute from injury to the vocal cords, tongue, mouth, lungs, throat, etc. Just throwing it out there, my muse had her vocal cords damaged by a rather jealous individual. Injury to any one of these areas could cause muteness. Also, severe trauma to the Broca’s area of the brain can cause muteness. It’s linked up with the functions of speech and language, so if it gets messed with… well… you know. 

http://www.princeton.edu/~achaney/tmve/wiki100k/docs/Broca_s_area.html

http://memory.ucsf.edu/brain/language/disorders

I’ve heard that extreme social anxiety can cause people to go mute when faced with social situations they deem uncomfortable, but they’re able to speak in an environment they find comfortable. If you want temporary muteness, that’s a good road to go down. Here’s an article about selective muteness. 

http://www.selectivemutismfoundation.org/about.html

Hope this helps you with your writing!

-R

anonymous asked:

I'm writing a fantasy novel which exists in a world of much diversity. However, I do not state race; I simply describe people with their skin color. (eg. She brushed an eyelash off her fair cheeks, His dark brown skin was unblemished, etc.) There are a few characters I want to be perceived as East Asian, but I am unsure on how to make that explicit. If I just say something like "tan skin" people could assume that as just a tanned white person. Any advice? (Eyes, hair, head shape, etc.)

Hm, hm, hmm… I have to admit, it took me a while on how to answer this. 
But here’s my answer in general: If you don’t want to explicitly state race then I would say try to focus on other physical traits besides skin color, like facial features and body structures.

And my answer in specifics: For someone who is East Asian in particular, I would focus on thick, black hair and thin bone structure (if they are female in particular, I would mention something about their comparatively smaller breasts to those of other descent). Facial features, like thin nostrils, “oblique” eyes, and thicker eyelid fat could also help a reader recognize them. If you want to describe their skin tone, mention the sallowness of it, as many East Asians tend to have a more yellow tone to their complexion. 

I know Wikipedia isn’t the most trusted source, but they have an interesting article which might be of use to you. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mongoloid

And then there’s a really cool science article from The New York Times! 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/15/science/studying-recent-human-evolution-at-the-genetic-level.html?_r=0

Hope this helps you out with your writing! 

-R

anonymous asked:

I'm writing a story where the main culture is based pretty heavily on the Maori culture. I ant the characters to be able to have the traditional Maori-style tattoos, but I know people have a tendency to get angry over this particular cultural aspect. Do you know of any ways I could do this without offending anyone?

You are correct, Maori tattooing, or Ta Moko, in particular has been very controversial. It started around 2007 particularly when a lot of fashion icons started using Ta Moko designs in their clothes. The problem with this being that the Ta Moko is sacred and has a religious aspect. In order to reconcile the sacred use of Ta Moko and the industrial demand a new style of design has come up called Kirituhi. This literally translates to “Drawn Skin” and is styled like the Ta Moko, but doesn’t use any of the sacred symbols or designs. It just looks like Ta Moko. So to answer your question I would look up examples of Kirituhi, and base your ideas off of that style.

Happy Writing,

-B