Tag Archives: storytelling

Tension and Conflict. What’s the Difference?

KRISTINA STANLEY

Tension and conflict will keep your reader engaged in every scene. Knowing the difference and when to use each will drive your story forward.

Tension

Tension is the threat of something bad happening. This creates suspense.

Tension can be subtle or in-your-face.

Subtle Tension: Imagine one character is hiding a secret that could destroy his life and another character is about to accidentally spill the secret. The reader will feel the tension if you’ve set up the scene so that the reader knows the second character can’t keep a secret.

In-your-face Tension: A woman is thrown off a boat at sea. The tension comes if the reader cares about the character and wants her to survive. Or the tension could be she’s an evil woman who is about to destroy the world, and the reader doesn’t want her to survive.


Conflict

Conflict is the fight that is actually happening. A…

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Why You Should Write Your First Draft Before Outlining Your Novel

Writers After Dark

outline-after-first-draftI often say I suffer from CRD—Chronic Rewriting Disease, a term I made up because it seems at least 50% of my work needs to be rewritten. But that’s my writing process, and I accept it. Sure, I could be like many writers and outline my novel from the start . . . but my brain doesn’t function that way. I’m a pantser, and that’s the way (uh-huh, uh-huh) I like it (uh-huh, uh-huh).

My secret is in outlining AFTER completing my first draft.

At first, I had some stressful moments, questioning my writing process. We all have to choose our methods, but inevitably we all reach a point where we wonder if what we’re doing is effective. So if you’ve reached this point and are interested in trying something new—even if you’re a hardcore pantser—I’m going to ask that you give this a shot. Pants away, but then use…

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BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog

HamletHamlet realizes his story is not “my dad was murdered” but instead, “I will find out who killed my dad and punish them.”

Many of us write a memoir or a personal essay after, around, or during a dramatic event in our lives. Cancer. Death of a loved one. Running a marathon. Climbing Everest. And many memoirs and essays remain unpublished because a dramatic event isn’t enough.

Think about it–any newspaper front page is covered in dramatic situations, worthy of reporting but mostly conveying information. The emotional reaction of the reader is grounded in their own experience meeting the facts, rather than empathy for the protagonist, or a desire to see them “win.”

Car Crash Claims Three

is a dramatic situation. It’s not a dramatic journey unless the reporter goes for a larger picture, and the larger picture has to include a protagonist taking a dramatic action.

Crash Claims Three:…

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Kobo Writing Life

By Angela Ackerman

Many authors, when in the throes of scene planning, are all about the action. They know who the players are, what they feel, and what needs to happen. With those three biggies squared away, it’s really just a matter of pounding out the words, right?

Nope.

A critical piece of the puzzle needs our attention first: choosing where the action takes place. And this storytelling element, the setting, deserves our respect. It’s no slap-dash backdrop, no mere stage for the characters to stomp across while DOING VERY IMPORTANT THINGS.

Choosing The Right Setting Will Transform Your Scene

It’s true; the setting is powerful. It pulls everything together like a magnet, shaping the events  and infusing your characters with a depth that cannot otherwise be achieved.

Don’t get me wrong, the action is important—very much so. Your characters have a job to do in each scene; they do…

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Teaching How to Write a Memoir, Narrative Writing

bnvalencia

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http://http://ontheweb.rozlinder.com/narrative-summary-mad-libs/

This story unfolds in a laundromat about 35 years ago. The text revolves around a girl named Brenda, her best friend, Lilia, and Lilia’s mother. Brenda is naive and curious. She wanted to learn how to talk in Spanish. The problem was that she thought she figured out how to say something new on Spanish, but she said it wrong. She overcame this by taking Spanish lessons. Readers learn that it is challenging to learn a second language and that it is ok to make mistakes.

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http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/79/d2/25/79d22583a78c4955abd17399ed145fa7.jpg

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http://rogerseducationconsulting.com/2014/05/13/personal-narratives-in-middle-school/

It was a late Saturday afternoon when I went with Lilia and her mom to the laundromat. Over the past few months I had been learning Spanish with Lilia and her mother.

Of course I wanted to spend time with my best friend and the best thing a best friend would do is help her and her mother fold the clothes…

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7 Potential Conflicts for Your Story

The Musings of a Creative Writer

We all know that there are the big four conflicts in storytelling:

Man vs Man

Man vs Self

Man vs Nature

Man vs Society

These conflicts are woven into the each layer of storytelling. I mean, what would a story be without conflict? Storytelling now uses these devices to find the right problems for their stories. There are also 3 other types that have become somewhat popular:

Man vs Fate/God

Man vs Supernatural

Man vs Technology

These seven conflicts fall under one of two major categories. internal and external. These two can help you portray your character’s wants and needs. They can also help you figure out if one of your character’s needs conflict with another’s. The other’s are just    My question to you is: how do you figure out what conflict is best for your story? Let’s say you have two options. Your character can either fight a societal…

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