writing character

  • Me: Come on brain, write.
  • Brain: I know what's going to happen next!
  • Me: That's fantastic, but for the sake of pacing can we work up to that point?
  • Brain: Yeah. We could. Or, hear me out, I can tell you every single detail of the next part and we won't be able to focus on the current point of the story and we'll get really frustrated because we know where we want to go but don't know how to get to it.
  • Me:
  • Me: ... Go on

*slams fist on table* give autistic characters more diverse roles than “precious confused child” or “socially awkward super-genius” you COWARDS

Drarry AU

My brain keeps returning to this idea – what if, in POA (movie universe), Harry never realizes that the crane Malfoy sent him was a note (because I mean, who would)?  Like he just stares at it, confused, then goes “okay” sets it down on his desk and goes back to ignoring Snape

I mean, Draco would be furious because how dare you not appreciate my bullying Potter and the next class they have together, he grabs another piece of paper, writes something along the lines of “You suck Potter”, folds another crane and blows it over – only for it to be left sitting on Harry’s desk again after the lesson, and Harry didn’t even look inside, he didn’t do anything with this damn crane, and Draco is absolutely seething from this lack of attention

So he does it again.  And again.  And again.  

First it’s insults (because of course he hates Potter, they’re archenemies, never mind the actual murderer stalking Harry at this very moment) – “I hope you die Potter” “I wish I met Sirius Black I’d help him” “Your glasses are appalling why do you still have the same ones from first year your prescription can’t possibly be the same you moron” “Eat a bag of dicks Potter” – but a month goes by and he’s running out of things to say and Potter never reads the notes anyway so Draco just starts ranting about everything else he finds annoying


Soon the cranes are just a way of venting – talk about your day, fold a beautiful crane, send it to the person you definitely hate the most.  He still tries to snark and generally antagonize every time he sees Potter, because it’s practically my duty to take the Golden Boy down a peg, Goyle – but he can’t do it the same way anymore, so he takes a step back – in everything except the cranes.  

Every day, every class, and sometimes at breakfast, a crane will land next to Harry Potter’s elbow.  Without fail.  Harry will pick it up, stare at it, and set it back down.  Or maybe slip it into his bag, and Draco’s stomach flips the first time he does that.  

It’s almost like they’re friends.  By now, Draco’s told him things he never even voiced to his friends – that he’s actually terrified of the Dementors, that he keeps feeling like he’s not good enough, because no matter what he tries, there’s always somebody better than him at it – that he still can’t understand why Harry didn’t want to be his friend that time on the train, seriously Potter what did I do?  you didn’t even know me! – and Potter didn’t crumple any of the cranes, so maybe he doesn’t hate him so much anymore?..  Draco knows Potter never reads these notes, but he likes to pretend that Harry knows all these things about him.  And maybe even cares a little.  

It’s stupid, and he really shouldn’t be putting any of such personal details in writing (honestly Lucius would be so disappointed, these cranes are perfect blackmail material and what the hell are you thinking Draco yells Draco’s inner voice) – but he can’t stop.  It’s become a habit, and Potter stared at him for fifteen minutes at lunch today, so he can’t stop.  Draco keeps talking, and making Harry little doodles, and trying not to smile too obviously when another crane ends up in Harry’s pocket.



And meanwhile, Harry’s going nuts.  He just doesn’t understand what Malfoy wants from him, or why he doesn’t run into him so often anymore – and the cranes really seem to be just paper (Ron why does Malfoy know origami is this a general wizard thing or is it just him), and they’re delicate and elegant, and he feels bad about destroying them – so he just leaves them.  

Until, of course, he absentmindedly shoves one in his bag one day – and finds it that evening.  Sighs and sets it on his bedside table, because what else can he do?..  Even if he throws it out, he’ll just get a new one tomorrow.  Or three.  

He’s confused, because Malfoy isn’t even so loud or dramatic anymore, it’s almost as if he’s trying not to attract attention – beyond the cranes – but Harry’s eyes are glued to him anyway.  He knows that Malfoy has to be up to something, because of course he is – but he just can’t tell what, there’s no way to know, and holy shit Ron he just smiled at me what the hell is he planning – and all this time, the pile of cranes on his bedside table keeps growing

He doesn’t lie awake at night, thinking of Malfoy’s smile.  He doesn’t.  Really.  

The next day, when he gets his morning crane, he flashes Malfoy a brilliant smile, and laughs at his stunned expression like ha, two can play at this game!  Gotcha now!  and he’s still thinking that Malfoy’s messing with his mind – except he can’t help but think that it would be nice if Draco was really like that.  If he really just sent the cranes over to brighten Harry’s day.  If there wasn’t something else behind this, because he’s starting to like it.  


All this goes on until Hermione barges into their dormitory again, in the ungodly hours of the morning, like she usually does – and stops dead, staring at the pile of cranes, Ron may have been complaining but she never imagined the true extent of this new, yet age-old obsession.  And of course, Harry tries to protest, that it’s all for science, Hermione, I have to find out what he’s up to and this is the only source of information – but the excuses run dry when she quizzes him a bit and finds out that none of the cranes are cursed, or charmed to yell insults, or anything, really 

So she’s like “well have you tried to unfold one” and no he didn’t, who the heck writes notes inside a crane anyway, isn’t it an artwork??  But hey, that’s an idea, and that night the trio gets together, sitting on Harry’s bed with the crane he just got in Charms, bated breath and all, waiting for it to unleash something nasty (Harry finds himself really really hoping it won’t) 

All kinds of security measures done, and they unfold it 

Hermione’s like “oh.  Oohh,” and Ron’s eyebrows fly away to roam the world

Because inside

there’s a shitty little drawing of Harry and Draco holding hands, with little hearts all around 

  • Bi character is only stated to be bi by the creators outside of the canon source: "That doesn't count at all, they should have at least mentioned it in the source material!"
  • Bi character is said to be bi within the source material: "That doesn't count, because it was only mentioned!"
  • Bi character's sexuality is an important part of their character: "Here we go again with the thinking mlm and wlw's lives revolve around their sexualities, ugh!"
  • Bi character has a love interest of the opposite gender: "So they're basically straight, the creators just want Woke Points™."
  • Bi character has a love interest of the same gender: "So they're basically gay, like nice try but bi people are still underrepresented and this isn't representation."
  • Bi character has more than one love interest: "Classic stereotyping bi people as promiscuous, god!"
  • Bi character literally exists in media at all: "This is somehow bad and problematic!!"
Questions to Ask When: Developing Character Appearance

Hey everyone, Abby here! Today I’m coming at you with something a little different from the usual “advice on a certain topic”; this is something that has a lot to do with development instead. So what I’m going to do is think of as many questions as I can about character appearances and list them all here; hopefully it helps!

The Questions

  • What color are their eyes? 
  • Do they have heterochromia or anything like it?
  • How tall are they? 
  • How much do they weigh?
  • Are the answers to the previous two questions about the same as the average where your character lives?
  • What are your character’s three most prominent features?
  • Which of their features are they the most proud of?
  • Which of them are they most insecure about?
  • What color is their hair?
  • What is their favorite hairstyle? Do they wear it like this daily?
  • How much do they actually care about their hair?
  • Do they enjoy changing the style and color often, or will they wear it the same way their whole lives given the chance?
  • What race (or races) is your character?
  • Do they have any tattoos or scars?
  • How easily do they emote? 
  • Do they have a generally emotional face?
  • Which emotion do they most easily show?
  • Do they enjoy wearing makeup? If yes, do they prefer a more subtle or bold look?
  • Do they enjoy wearing jewelry? If yes, what sort do they prefer (necklace, bracelet, ring, etc.)?
  • How often do they wear makeup or jewelry?
  • Does you character ever wear merchandise for things they like?
  • Are they more likely to be found in a long- or short-sleeved shirt?
  • If your character had the opportunity, would they choose ripped or regular jeans?
  • Do they wear hats often? If yes, which one do they wear the most?
  • Take a look at their wardrobe. Which color is most prominently featured?
  • Still looking at their wardrobe, how would you describe the color scheme: monochromatic, gray-ish, pastels, earth tones, bright colors, or all over the place?
  • What is their favorite article of clothing to wear? Do they wear it more for look or for feel?
  • When choosing their clothes, does your character base their decision on look, feel, or both?
  • What constitutes as pajamas for them? Does it have to be strictly things meant to be pajamas or just anything comfortable enough to sleep in?
  • Your character has nothing to do today; they’re staying at home and nobody super important is going to see them. How are they dressed?

So, I think this should be enough to help you get started on developing your character’s appearance; I hope this helped! If you or anyone else wants to see me cover another topic in my next post, please don’t hesitate to leave a message in my ask. Until next time, much love! <333

A: “WAKE UP!”

B: “Wha-what’s wrong?!”

A: “Shrek 5 comes out 2020 and will be about Shrek’s backstory and how he came to be and I’m so excited, was he born an ogre? Was he cursed? Will we see baby Shrek? Angsty teen Shrek? I need answers.”

B: “…did you honestly break into my room in the middle of the night to discuss SHREK?!”

life-of-a-feminist  asked:

five steps for not writing a boring story? i can never ever write something that doesn't end up boring 😂

Hiya! Thanks for your question. Writing an engaging story is complicated, but it can be done.

First off, there are so many aspects to writing a gripping story. Honestly, it can’t be done in five steps (and certainly not in one blog post). To prevent a boring story you need strong characters, an exciting plot, good pacing… the list goes on and on.

So rather than type out a 3000+ word response, I’m going to give you a mini-masterpost of the key aspects of writing a non-boring story with links to other LGF posts. Here you go:

How Not to Write a Boring Story:

Descriptions:

How to Write Better Descriptions

Showing vs Telling

How to Create Interesting World-Building

Dialogue:

How to Create a Unique Character Voice

Writing Unique Dialogue

How to Prevent Your Story from Being Dialogue-Heavy

Characters:

What Do You Do When Your Main Character Doesn’t Jump Off the Page?

Three Types of Character Traits

Writing Character Arcs

Plot:

How to Make Your Conflict Less Plain

The Element Every Story Needs

How to Avoid Unnecessary Scenes

Pacing:

Why Your Story Feels Too Fast

How to Pace a Scene More Quickly

Pacing Through Details

Beginning:

What to Write in a First Chapter

How to Avoid Info Dumps in the Beginning

10 Ways to Start Your Story

Middle:

How to Build-Up to a Climax

Plotting the Middle

Creating and Maintaining Tension

End:

Traits of a Strong Ending

Examples of Narrative Endings

Dual Duties of Chapter Endings

Misc.:

What Aspects Make a Good Story?

The Four Horsemen of the Bore-Apocalypse

Thanks again for your question! If you need any more writing advice, feel free to send in another ask! Happy writing!

- Mod Kellie


If you need advice on general writing or fanfiction, you should maybe ask us!

you know, even with all the other bill cipher related crap, and the weirdmageddon itself taken into account, i still think that the creepiest scene in all of gravity falls is when pacifica tries to stand up for dipper and explain herself, but her father just rings that bell and she immediately snaps her mouth shut, takes a submissive stance, and retreats in shame

Rick and Morty Writing Rule of Thumb: The characters are always the catalyst for their own demise. The adventures they get into are a result of their own actions and decisions.

They never stumble into a problem nor is the problem coming to them. Rather, they bring their own problems upon themselves.

For example, Rick’s own interference with Mr. Goldenfold’s dream and Jerry’s desire to make Snuffles smarter cause the conflict in Lawnmower Dog.

Morty’s decision to save Fart’s life is the cause of the conflict in Mortynight Run.

Even when there is an antagonist like in M. Night Shaym-Aliens and The Ricks Must Be Crazy, it’s Rick’s previous actions of inventing Concentrated Dark Matter and creating the Microverse that cause the conflict, to begin with.

Little details to give your characters
  • Picks M&Ms out of trail mix
  • Bites fingernails/toenails
  • Has a small collection of water bottles by their bed
  • Cracks knuckles
  • Loves the smell of nail polish remover
  • Is a pollotarian 
  • Only listens to music from one decade
  • Never wears matching socks
  • Wears college sweaters (bonus if they don’t go to that school or know anyone who does)
  • Always chews gum/has gum
  • Constantly gives everyone nicknames based on a pun of their name
  • Laughs a little after they speak even if they didn’t say something funny
  • Always wears solid color hoodies
  • Constantly quotes/references movies
  • Only calls people by their full first name or full first and last name
  • Has a unibrow
  • Afraid of the dark
  • Impeccable manners
  • Smells like Vicks Vaporub
  • Steps over the cracks in the sidewalk or steps on the cracks in the sidewalk (if they hate their mother)
  • Smooths their eyebrow hairs down
  • Plays with their eyebrows/hair when sleepy
  • Picks at their skin (mostly their face)
  • Hugs people when they first meet them
  • Doesn’t shave their armpit/pubic/leg hair
  • Takes off their bra/gets naked as soon as they get home
  • Always has a snack with them
  • Plays with their body jewelry whenever they’re nervous/mad/sad
  • Likes bouncing their legs
  • Draws/writes on skin
creative curses i like using
  • shut the hell your mouth
  • billions of bilious blistering barnacles
  • what the goose
  • pirates!
  • bloody hell
  • slutbags
  • motherhugger
  • lord farquaad
  • great snakes!
  • crikey
  • well i’ll be a bitch
  • flippity flop you’re a cock
  • well butter my buns and call me betty crocker
  • dusty doughnuts
  • kiss my sass
  • daily doses of dingleberries
Developing Characters by Threes

Whenever I create new characters - for writing, for tabletop RPGs, or for video games - I look for character creation tools and charts to help me think through their personality, but the ones I’ve found have either been too long and complicated (”describe your character’s relationship with her paternal grandmother”) or too culture-specific (”does your character believe in God?”). So I made one for myself. It’s meant to be a quick exercise, designed to get down a few important aspects of a character and a few anecdotes to flesh them out. The questions are also very broad - you can interpret them in whatever way you find useful, and they should be interesting to answer whether your character exists in the modern day or in a fantasy world. Since I’m sure I’m not the only one with this issue, I thought I’d share it here. Enjoy - and if you have any questions you think would be neat to add, please comment with them!

List or describe three…

Names (first/middle/last or first/nickname/last):

Positive qualities:

Negative qualities:

Neutral qualities:

Skills:

Things they are bad at:

Favorite things:

Things they dislike:

Hobbies:

Habits:

Quirks:

Beliefs (moral, religious, or personal):

Instincts (beyond those commonly felt - eg. an instinct to protect the weak, or to become passive-aggressive when insulted):

Important moments in their life:

Unimportant moments in their life (funny stories, anecdotes they like to repeat, or small moments demonstrative of their character):

Important relationships in their life (at the beginning of your story):

Things they want or need:

Things about them that changed before your story:

Things about them that change during your story:

Objects they own that are important to them:

High Payoff Scenes.

If that scene you meant to be emotional, jaw-dropping and climactic isn’t working right, try taking a step back. 

All the usual aspects of a good scene also apply to the buildup toward a good scene. As well as including all these aspects into the scene itself, remember that at the point where your awe inspiring scene hits…

  • The reader should already feel deep, ‘positive’ emotions for the characters involved, whether that be love, intrigue, or an I love to hate them feeling.
  • The reader should already understand and have witnessed the characters struggling in some way with the goals they are working towards during that scene.
  • The reader should already have a clear picture of the character’s relationships and emotions, and understand which direction they are moving.
  • The reader should already be well-based in the plot and have a good understanding of every piece of information they need order to be fully immersed in the scene. 
  • The reader should already have a clear picture of the current stakes and playing field, so they can decide what outcome to root for. (Or in some cases, they can feel the same desperation the pov character has as they realize there are no good outcomes.)

Most importantly, remember that there are no perfect first drafts, and barely any half-decent second, third, or fourth drafts either. If you need to rewrite and rewrite a few times over, that’s okay. 

Just because the amazing scene in your head seems to fall short once it’s written, doesn’t mean all its amazingness isn’t still buried in there somewhere.

You are Not Your Characters

Anonymous asked: “I find myself creating main characters that are similar to each other. The problem is I put them in a situation and write about how they deal with it based on how I would react, because I don’t really know another way. Do you have any tips on diversifying my characters?”

I think writers have a lot more in common with actors than you might think. Really, writers are more like their shy, introverted, and awkward cousin - I say that affectionately of course, I’m a writer, not an actress. 

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