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Cara Cilento

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  1. The act of writing a series is a big undertaking. It has the potential to be an extremely powerful marketing approach for indie authors if it is carried out correctly. So, grab that wonderful narrative idea that you plan to continue writing about for years to come, and let's dive right into the fundamentals of creating a serial. The first thing you need to do is work out what kind of series will work best for the tale you want to tell. It should fit into one of these groups: Serial: When you think of a series, the first thing that generally comes to mind is serialized fiction which is a group of novels that are written in such a way that they progress chronologically from one to the next. The books in this series need to be read in this order for them to make any sense at all. Each book must have a central plot that carries through each novel. The arc of the main character must align with the plot throughout each novel. Episodic: Each tale in an episodic series, which is also frequently referred to as a procedural series, is self-contained, and the series features an interesting protagonist to whom viewers can't help but become invested. Readers may enjoy each book on its own as a standalone, but the primary connection between the volumes is not one continuous storyline but the same main character throughout. Imagine a series of murder mysteries: in each one, there is a peculiar but great detective who serves as the series' central figure and functions as an anchor for the whole thing. Interlinked: The magic of an interlinked series is that each book takes place in the same universe, which serves as the series' central organizing principle. There may be a different protagonist in each novel, some of whom are connected to the other protagonists in other books. Readers can enjoy interconnected books in any sequence they choose, much like episode-based television programs. There may be some benefits to reading it in the order in which it was published, but such benefits will mostly take the form of clues or foreshadowing but they won't have a significant impact on the series as a whole. D.A. Mucci writes about the Joys and Struggles of creating a series. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/27487-the-joys-and-struggles-of-writing-a-series-–-guest-post-by-d-a-mucci-ignatius-and-the-battle-at-dinas-affaraon/#comment-34439
  2. Since I am a paranormal investigator, October is my busiest time. I investigate every weekend, which doesn’t leave me much time to write. I try to squirrel away some time to at least plot ideas for my WIP, but a week ago, the unimaginable happened; a family member passed away. It was a tough time to negotiate, especially as a person who speaks to the undead on a weekly basis. The grieving process, however, got me to thinking. How do we write a successful death scene? When done correctly, death scenes are extremely important. They are so significant that they can completely reshape how a reader feels about the book. However, writing a death scene is not the same as eliminating a character from the story. It is not about putting an end to them in a manner that is surprising, cruel, or even unexpected in any way. In a death scene, the goal is to convey to the audience not only why a character had to pass away but also why their passing was appropriate. The goal is to make sure that the reader fully understands how the character's death will affect the story. It's all about evoking a sense of sorrow in the reader over what happened to the character. Like with all characters, you must decide what death puts at stake. What does your character stand to lose as a result of their passing? If he is dying, it is probable that they are saying goodbye to some aspect of his previous life. Therefore, you need to consider what is most essential to your character at that moment, and have your other significant characters accept and support them. It's also possible that a character's death scene will make your character a hero or legend. Consider the various instances in which someone has died a heroic death. How were they honored? Make sure that everyone feels the way that it deserves to be felt by making sure that everyone feels the way that it deserves to be felt. Phew. That was a mouthful! You can do this by establishing the scenario's background. Make it realistic. Readers should not have to suspend all belief in a death scene. Detail what is going on in the world beyond your hero's situation that is essential to their heroism. Then, tell your reader what is going on in the world while your character is passing away as well as its effects. Be careful to consider the next logical step that your characters could take, and then make that predicament your hero's route out of the scenario. For instance, if your character is going to go against all odds, he should be willing to give up his life in the act of defiance. In short, your character’s death should mean something. It should work for both the story as a whole and the characters. Further, it is necessary to incorporate death into the rest of the plot in order for it to have any kind of impact or feel meaningful. If the readers don't find a purpose for the death or if the death doesn't feed into the remainder of the storyline in any manner, it becomes an unpleasant glitch in the story. On the other hand, you can add meaning and flavor to the death scene by bringing in all the other narrative threads and tying them into the scene. This will increase the death's value and the impact it has on the reader. No matter what you do, there must be some link between the death and the rest of the story. It could be a vendetta, a disagreement, or the death of a loved one that has caused one of the characters to change. Make sure that it functions as an effective storytelling device and fits into a wide variety of narrative contexts and themes. Having said that, please have an in-depth understanding of your character. If you don't have an in-depth understanding of the character you're killing off or understand their entire journey, you won't be able to make their death resonate on a personal level. Spend some time getting to know your character before beginning the actual death scene. If you squander your valuable page space with no clear motivations or objectives, all you'll end up doing is staring blankly at the abrupt deaths of your cast members and wondering how to start over. It's as simple as that: you have to make the audience care about your character by giving them something to care about. When it comes down to it, the key to writing effective death scenes is to give your reader the impression that the event is happening right now. They have to be in the moment with your characters because the reader's understanding of a death scene is influenced not only by how the action is written and the characters who are killed off in the scene but the events that take place within a scene, in the world surrounding the character who is passing, and the expectations that are built up by the reader as the plot moves forward.
  3. It is not a secret that the tried-and-true strategy of using cliffhangers at the end of your chapters or scenes is a surefire way to make a reader turn the page; in fact, it is one of the most effective ways. And why shouldn't it be? Life is a cliffhanger. In fact, Pops, in Secret Life of Pets went so far as saying "Every breath is a cliffhanger." No truer words have been said. Everyone everywhere albeit a car chase or a contentious meeting or even making a simple decision about what to eat can be a cliffhanger. It all depends on how you write it. However, what many authors fail to comprehend is that the cliffhanger conclusion is only one part of the puzzle. The cliffhanger is the hook that gets the reader to flip the page. It's a lot like fishing. A writer casts the line with a lure and bait. but if you don't have a strong line to support reader across the gap and a sinker that pulls them deeply into the next scene or chapter, your reader likely to squirm free and swim away. So how do we do that? Your hook is the cliffhanger that occurs at the conclusion of each chapter, and the sinker is the first sentence of the next chapter. If done correctly, they will establish a connection for the reader, allowing her to flow easily from one point to the next as she moves through the text. Sounds easy, right? In order to successfully make that link, you must first effectively structure the cliffhanger, and then you must firmly ground your reader in the scenario that comes after the cliffhanger. This implies that she needs to be oriented right away, and then she needs to be pulled down into the water like a sinker on a fishing line. The scene that comes after a cliffhanger will either be situated in a new time or place, or it will switch to the point of view of a different character. It is essential that you immerse your reader in the new circumstance from the very beginning of your piece, in the very first paragraph. The most effective way to accomplish this is to rapidly develop point of view while making use details, details and more details! For more information: https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/20574-the-art-of-the-cliffhanger/#comment-28819
  4. In today's world, the age-old proverb "Don't judge a book by its cover" is rarely put into practice. What factors influence a customer's decision to click or to go on? In the war of thumbnail covers that is taking place today, one way to get noticed is to use visual aspects to develop a design that is intelligent and stands out from the competitors. Applying these strategies to your next cover design could help you increase sales and raise your visibility: The first impression is the most important. It is important for a book, regardless of whether it is exhilarating, romantic, or reassuring, to include visual signals that are connected with the book type. The appearance of self-help books and the emotions they elicit in readers should be very different from those of romance or suspense novels. You will obtain insight and clues on how to design a book cover that has all of the appropriate "feels" for the category and the expectations of the readers if you examine other books that are in the same genre as yours. It is acceptable to be original or distinctive, but you shouldn't wander too far from the people who are likely to become your customers. The best way for an author to achieve their ultimate goal of increasing sales is to attract the attention of their target demographic and encourage them to continue reading. The layouts are calling. The layout is made up of the fundamental components that make up the composition. A well-balanced and well-ordered layout guides the viewer's attention through the primary components of the cover design, which ought to captivate even in thumbnail size. Choose either typography or pictures to serve as the guide in establishing a visual emphasis that expresses what the book is about; utilizing both could dilute the visual effect. The idea is to have one visual focus. The use of graphics in a supporting position that is less obvious helps the impact that typography has, and vice versa. Take care not to bombard the reader with an excessive number of design components; white space is equally vital and contributes to an increase in readability. Images compel. Capturing the essence of the book in a single image that is both appealing and memorable is a great way to draw attention to the cover of your book. Just a few clicks are all it takes to get fantastic artwork, graphics, photography, or typography. Stock libraries are an excellent starting point for any project. Research the copyright and licensing requirements for each and all photos you use, regardless of whether they are royalty-free, rights-managed, or free. Use your imagination. Combine many photographs or utilize them in a creative manner. It may be more expensive, but the visual impression will be more polished and professional if you use high-quality photographs that attract attention and are remembered. The way that typography looks. Typefaces generate feelings. Some of them have an old-fashioned or contemporary vibe, while others have a sweet or savory flavor. They not only boost visibility but also provide readers with a significant amount of information regarding the contents of a book and make a visual impact in comparison to other titles. A cover design must have appropriate typography in order to be successful. In addition, it should contribute to the overarching concept of the cover as well as the genre. Think about the size, weight, and style of each typographic element before moving on. The title of the book should be the typography element that takes up the most space on the front cover, unless the author is really famous. It is best not to use more than two different fonts, and you should prioritize readability above employing fancy typefaces or effects. Feelings can be conveyed through color. Color is a powerful tool for expressing feelings, creating an atmosphere, and rapidly getting a message over to a potential reader. The meaning changes depending on the shade. Red is commonly used in thriller novels to express a sense of urgency or danger, while purple alludes to mysticism or magic, and cheerful yellow evokes the feeling of reading a book on the beach during the summer. Color possesses the ability to guide our gaze and demonstrates to us where we should look, what we should do, and how we should understand something. The psychology of color is almost always dependent on the surrounding environment. When used in a different context, the phrase "thriller novel red" could also refer to love or romance. By doing some study beforehand, you can ensure that the colors you choose accurately convey the tone and subject matter of your book. The design of a book cover necessitates that each of these aspects work together to create a coherent and engaging design that conveys the message, "Pick me up and read me." Your book is the product of considerable time, thinking, and effort on your part, and it ought to be noticed.
  5. Most people decide how good a book is by its cover. You worked on a book for many years. So, it needs a cover that does the story you wrote justice. The cover of a book should be made in a way that makes the reader want to read it right away. The summary on the back of the book should make the reader want to open it and read what's inside. This means that your book's cover has to be beautiful. It should not only be interesting to the readers, but also fit with what is being said. Now that you've finished writing your book, it's time to pick the right cover for it. This article is for you if you are worried that you might make the wrong choice. Today, we're going to give you some tips on how to pick a great cover for your book. So let's get to the details, shall we? 1. Get ideas: Look at what sells to get ideas. Go to your favorite bookstore and look at all the books on the shelves. Bring a pen and a notebook. Look at the book covers and write down what grabs your attention. More importantly, look at the covers of the books that your target audience loves. Choose the parts of these book covers that make them stand out. Look for the elements of design that fit your story: Go to the shelf where you want your book to be and use your designer eye to look for things that make it stand out. Read the most recent releases to find out about the latest design and technology trends. Make a book cover that fits with what's popular. Bring new ideas to your genre by comparing it to others: Most of the book covers for books in the same genre look alike. Even though the main parts change depending on the story, most of the time the colors are the same. It's like how different brands build their identities with color schemes. But it doesn't hurt to try something new with your book cover. To do this, you should compare your genre to others in the same category. Try out other types of music as well. For instance, the covers of fantasy books are a mix of photos and drawings. Often, the covers of crime novels only have a picture. Also, the titles of fantasy books have a lot of style. On the other hand, the fonts on the covers of crime books are clean and sans serif. Explore sub-genres: You can also look at sub-genres to come up with more ideas. Also, think about the latest design trends. For example, modern dark fantasy book covers are often made up of photos that look very real, while traditional ones are mostly made up of paintings. Some crime-mystery books have covers with pictures. Keep your target readers in mind: You should also think about the age of the people you want to read your book when choosing a cover. If you want to reach young children, a painted cover with a character drawing will do. One of the best examples is how the covers of Harry Potter books for kids and for adults look different. Don't forget about the winners of the contest: This is my favorite. The winners of recent book cover design contests can also give you great ideas for how to design the cover of your book. You can also look at the personal lists that experts or avid readers of your genre have made. Keep in mind the following: While adjusting to the latest design trends, don't forget about your best-selling items. If your book is like a best-seller from the past, choose a cover style from the past. In the end, the design of your book's cover should show what the book is all about. It should fit your story and hook the kind of readers you want to get. For more on book covers, please read https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/17620-friday-speak-out-how-i-got-a-book-cover-i-loved/#comment-25864
  6. I find that the possibilities within paranormal fiction are endless. For example, a ghost can linger on our plane of existence in order to wrap up any unfinished business they may have before moving on. Their unfinished business could result from a traumatic experience in their personal lives, or even their death itself. The classic trope is usually that the ghost was once a person who was slain, and now they haunt the location where they were killed. And it goes without saying that they won't let up until they have the satisfaction that justice has been done. Simple. What if the ghost was kind and good-natured as they were in their corporal life? They may choose to remain on earth because they willingly do so in order to assist in the care and provision of loved ones who are still among the living after they have passed away. They could warn the lovers of an adversary or inform the next victim before plotting their revenge. The ghost doesn't even have a personal connection to the main character at all. It's possible that the protagonist will get hurt because of the ghost's haunting. For instance, a ghost may be destined to continue haunting the location where they died until they can discover the name of the person who murdered them. Therefore, anytime anybody goes to the location, the ghost appears in all of their gruesome splendor to plead for help, terrifying the living daylights out of whoever is present at the time. I know that is a bit dramatic, but it has been done. The majority of ghosts search for answers, for justice, and for a conclusion to their unresolved issues. But let’s be honest, some ghosts are just jerks. They were bullies in life and death, or these ghosts have become so bitter as a result of their plight that they have given up all prospects of ever finding peace. All they want to do is cause as much anguish as they themselves have experienced. So now that you want to use a ghost in your work, it needs a physical setting. If you don’t ghost hunt like me, you may want to use the old tried and true locations where ghosts are found. Many supernatural ghosts are said to haunt (or be "connected to") one of several distinct categories of items, including the following: A room, structure, or location where they passed away. I have investigated homes, prisons, asylums, battlefields, and hospitals to name a few. Within an item that held significance for them or played a significant role in the manner in which they passed away. The most common objects that I found to have attachments are dolls, masks, jewelry, clothing, and portraits. Wherever the person they are attached to happens to be. If the person who is haunted is very unfortunate, the ghost may be able to materialize at virtually any time and in any location. For example, I have been on investigations at various locations, and entities from one location will follow the investigator to the next and call them by name. Obviously, the entity that can follow a person is pretty impressive. An entity like that should have a remarkable skill set. They should be able to pass through solid matter, enter people's dreams, possess and control other people, manipulate physical things like electricity, or take on a physical shape. These abilities must be consistent throughout the novel or develop over time as the entity grows more comfortable with its abilities. But how does my antagonist get rid of it? Well, that’s assuming your antagonist wants to rid themselves of it and that the entity is not the antagonist. You probably already knew this, but in order for a ghost to be laid to rest, their unfinished business needs to be taken care of first. You must: Discover the cause of their deaths. Put their killer in jail Reveal the secret that died with the ghost.
  7. As some of you may already be aware, I am a fan of the paranormal. I am an avid ghost hunter and paranormal researcher. I collect haunted objects (yes, I willingly bring haunted things into my home) and the three-book series that I have been crafting for the past two years, is based on the paranormal. I am a voracious reader of ghost tales, and I have just recently researched Native American belief systems and their link to the paranormal which greatly helped me to establish my beliefs on spirits. In my last post, I gave four tips on how to write about paranormal experiences. What I would like to do in this piece is talk about the function of a ghost or entity in your writing. I like to break down ghosts/entities into four different categories: 1. The Plain Old Run of the Mill Ghost. This is the spirit of a person who has passed away but was unable to move on to the next life. It does not break its bonds with the physical world. 2. A Haunting Apparition This is a physical representation of the protagonist's disturbed psyche, and it torments them in the following ways: a.Dreams that keep coming back. b.The recollection of prior humiliation and traumatic experiences brought on by a current event. c. daydreams d. hallucinations, either auditory or visual in nature e.When viewed from the outside, the protagonist appears to have paranoid thoughts; yet, the protagonist believes that their encounter with the haunting is all too genuine. This is by far, my favorite spirit to work with when I write. It lends itself to many subplots and can be a gateway for genre overlap. For example, thriller or crime novel can easily be transformed into a paranormal tale by a tormented soul. Take for example, Odd Thomas. An unassuming fry cook can save hundreds of people because of his paranormal experiences. 3. A Haunting Run of the Mill Ghost This spirit is a combination of the Haunting Apparition and the Plain Old Ghost. It's possible that the protagonist is being followed by a true ghost, but it's also possible that the "ghost" they see is only a representation of their guilt and terror brought on by a break from reality. You are probably saying, “Fantastic, Cara! Now, how do we use them as tools in our writing?” I am so glad you asked. Ghosts and the paranormal is a fantastic way to reveal our own biases and shames, as well as the anxieties that are prevalent in our society at the time of the writing. This is something that is sometimes done on purpose as a socio-cultural metaphor however, the author must take great care not to malign any one person or group as being monstrous, transgressive, and/or frightening. Yet ghosts and that paranormal can be, when done correctly effective representations of the past returning to haunt us. They can be the perfect symbolic exploration of what it is like to confront and triumph over adversity. They can be the manifestation of: lingering and hidden embarrassments The consequences of our actions Our own trauma Therefore, the more you are able to incorporate one or more of those themes into your narrative (either through the past of the protagonist, the ghost, or both), the more emotionally and psychologically resonant it will be with the reader. In short, ghosts and the paranormal have a strange position in our thoughts; despite the fact that they are terrifying. They convey an underlying sense of optimism because they imply that there is life after death, that there is still a chance for justice to be done, and that we will one day be able to find rest and tranquility in the hereafter. Writing about the paranormal brings a unique emotional value that is both reassuring and terrifying. I find the paranormal endlessly intriguing and the possibilities for storytelling are unlimited.
  8. So you got inspired to write another novel. Maybe it was just a title and a concept. Like maybe you were drifting through a grocery store and saw a person mopping up a spill in aisle four, but like you, no one could figure out how the spill happened. Suddenly, it hits you, a story about a prankster child with telekinesis sitting in a grocery cart; but as you write it, it ages into a novel about a lonely teen gamer who plays out a fantasy world in his parent's basement. But it’s not quite coming together... So the self-doubt and all the questions ‌creep in. Did I write enough? Too much? Where am I going with this? Then you ‌bang your head against the wall and throw your hands up in the air, defeated. You throw it in a drawer never to see the light of day. Heather Webb asks you to look at your own writing process. Enjoy! https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/16903-your-writing-process-says-you’re-a-failure/#comment-25118
  9. My wife is a paranormal investigator and works for a company that runs ghost hunting events... The last three weeks have been interesting for sure. I took my kids on vacation, which resulted in me taking a vacation from writing. I enjoyed being unplugged from my keyboard and so did my kids. In this newly found freedom from the keyboard, my wife approached me with, “Hey, I need some help at work. Do you want to come?” My wife is a paranormal investigator and works for a company that runs ghost hunting events. I have gone with her before but this time it felt different. My creative juices started to flow. So, we left to first stay at an abandoned asylum and then at a historical landmark on the East Coast. For those of us who have experienced an unusual or paranormal experience, we may have contradictory feelings about whether or not we should tell other people about it or whether or not we should keep it to ourselves. It may be quite cathartic to share your tale, and many individuals have found that writing about their experiences with the supernatural inspires amazement and intrigue in readers who like reading about the paranormal. To explain a supernatural experience, however, requires more than just asserting that the doll moved on its own, as some people have done. In order for your audience to follow along and be attracted by what you have to say, you will need to structure your account like a tale with a beginning, middle, and ending. In the case that these occurrences did in fact take place, the task at hand is best approached in the manner of a memoir, which requires creative skill. In light of this, the following are some pointers for writing about genuine paranormal experiences: 1. The tone and the atmosphere There is a strong emphasis on atmosphere in scary stories. Even while some supernatural tales may have comedic or humorous parts woven into them, the general tone and atmosphere of the story should be solemn in order to have the creepiest possible impact. Your narrative should be filled with an eerie, bizarre, and terrifying atmosphere, but it shouldn't be so dramatic that the events come across as funny, disruptive, or incomprehensible. There is a very thin line that separates campy from creepy. It is helpful to read your tale out loud in order to get a sense of where your writing is taking you. A compelling tale is one that is bizarre yet realistic. 2. Exhibit and explain The piece of advice "show, don't tell" is perhaps one of the most poorly phrased pieces of guidance given to writers. A more useful piece of guidance would be to "primarily show, but tell sometimes." This is especially important to keep in mind while writing about interactions with the otherworldly. When should one give a description, and when should one show? Please fill us in on what transpired. When discussing the real supernatural occurrence, be sure to provide specific facts. It is not necessary to use metaphors or other flowery language in this context. Keep your statements simple and to the point. These parts of your tale shouldn't leave anyone scratching their heads. Describe to us how you were feeling. Although the presentation of your information must never be muddled, it is OK for you to be confused. Perhaps not all of your readers have had experiences with the supernatural, but all of us have felt things like fear, rage, loneliness, despair, and so on. Because of this, it is essential to incorporate a human dimension. It's possible that the reader would never believe in what terrified you, but if you can convince them that you were afraid, then you've already achieved your goal. 3. Use all five senses You are familiar with the five senses: touch, smell, sound, and taste. These five senses are essential. Use them. The more you do, the more genuine and interesting your work will appear to the reader. The use of the senses is very effective when describing a location, establishing an atmosphere, providing information to the reader, or demonstrating to the audience how you feel about something. So, explain how the temperature dropped or raised, talk about the tapping in the walls, describe the shadow or the orbs slinking around the room, the lavender perfume in the master bedroom, or the strange taste that you get when you inhale the dust kicked up from your feet. 4. When you get to the scary part, slow down. Take some time to reflect on your experience. Write down if there is a significant emotion attached to it. When writing about real-life paranormal encounters, do not simply describe how inanimate objects moved on their own without mentioning anything else. Describe the situation...all of it. So, there you have it. My four tips for writing about a paranormal experience from a person that has had paranormal experiences. Please add that sense of reality to your tales. I know it is so much simpler to suspend one's disbelief in a narrative that took place on the other side of the world but once you have that experience, the other side isn’t that far away.
  10. As writers, we all know the tried and true formula for building protagonists. We also know that the story is driven by choices the protagonist makes and the consequences. But how does the protagonist make those decisions? How do you depict the internal struggle of choice? It is important for readers to not only recognize these transformations but also understand how the story's events affect the characters. The writer must make the implicit explicit, otherwise the reader cannot infer character traits or recognize a character's growth across a story. Readers must be aware of the underlying reasons why characters change. Of course, there is a formula for that as well, but it is not without fault. David Corbett goes into detail in his article below. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/16744-emma-vs-hamlet-two-approaches-to-dramatizing-character-change/#comment-24958
  11. A villain, or as writers say, the antagonist, has goals and actions which challenge the protagonist, the hero. Together, the hero and the villain drive the storyline. A villain, unlike a hero, is frequently driven by a desire to perform acts of cruelty and depravity. They are the story's hostile force, challenging your hero and creating the tension. But what does it take to make a great villain? Most great villains have a set of features. First, a villain must have a strong bond with the hero. Their innate antagonism to them aids in the development of the hero's character. Second, every villain must have his own set of morals. If a villain in your novel spends a significant amount of time killing people, you must offer him or her plausible motives for doing so. Make the reader realize what desperation or belief has brought him to this point. After all, every villain considers himself to be the protagonist of their own tale. Third, a villain must be a worthy adversary. Your hero's nemesis should be a formidable and deserving foe. They shouldn't be too weak to be defeated, nor should they be too powerful to be defeated only by chance. Fourth, the villain must have an intriguing backstory. A good villain should have a compelling and plausible history. A memorable past helps us to relate with and even sympathize with the evil, in addition to generating a deeper and more three-dimensional adversary. Lastly, villains should be entertaining. Let's face it: our favorite villains have attributes that we love to despise, whether it's their dark sense of humor or their loathsome worldview. In his article, How To Write an Effective Villain, Michael Neff explains it all. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/18113-how-to-write-an-effective-villain/#comment-26340
  12. When writing your manuscript, you are supposed to write it in chronological sequence, right? The events of the narrative are retold in the sequence in which they occurred in the story. We trace the cause and effect of each event and the results of each event until we get to an endpoint that leaves the reader satisfied. But what if you want to modify the timeline of a narrative and retell the events in a different order than they occurred in the original story? Hmmm…a nonlinear timeline? Preposterous! But there are a variety of reasons why a writer can choose to narrate a narrative out of chronological sequence. Let’s look at them. Nonlinear timelines show character growth. Because of the contrast between many individuals, the nonlinear narrative has been employed to illustrate character development and progress. Nonlinear timelines show a stream of consciousness. The ideas of the protagonist are communicated directly to the reader without the need for extra commentary. It's as if you're able to read the character's thoughts. Because the characters cycle between memories in their minds and also address what is occurring to them in the present, this contributes to the nonlinear storyline of the novel. Putting the reader straight into the head of a character helps the reader develop a deep sense of empathy for that person. Nonlinear timelines present questions in the mind of your reader. If done well, it will keep them interested with your story for the rest of the chapter. Because they move about in time, nonlinear narratives can generate story problems by demonstrating the result of a cause that the audience hasn't yet witnessed. So how do we write these nonlinear timelines? I present to you Sarah Zachrich Zeng. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/19380-how-to-write-a-novel-with-a-mind-bendingly-complex-nonlinear-timeline/#comment-27550
  13. "Third-person point of view" refers to the way we describe events in a work of fiction or nonfiction through the use of third-person pronouns such as "he," "she," and "them." Third-person point of view may be divided into categories: 1. Third-person objective: The facts of a story are conveyed by an observer or recorder who seems to be unbiased and impersonal in his or her reporting. 2. An omniscient third-person narrator not only provides the facts, but he or she may also interpret them and describe the thoughts and feelings of the characters. 3. A narrator who provides the facts and analyzes events from the perspective of a single character is referred to as third-person limited. 4. The use of a "multiple" or "variable" third-person point of view, in which the viewpoint switches from one character to another during a narrative. In the article: Four Levels of Third person POV, Michael Neff presents to you four levels of third person. They are: The Author-POV or APOV, refers to the author, the detached or "omniscient narrator" who steps in now and then to set the scene or make artful commentary at the right time (just *please* don't address the reader directly because that is so irritating and breaks the reader's immersion into the fictional dream). 3POV Distant or 3POV-D occurs at such time the narrative focuses on specific characters and we watch their actions like a live camera actively filming them. 3POV Close or 3POV-C takes us into the character's head and camera viewpoint shifts to the character, i.e., we see or experience, for the most part, only what the character is viewing or experiencing. 3POV First-Close or 3POV-FC dives deeper into the character's head and effectively mimics first person POV, but naturally without the usual limits of first person POV because the author can cut from the 3POV-FC and pull all the way back to APOV. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/15644-four-levels-of-third-person-pov/#comment-23937
  14. Recently, I wrote about log lines. Remember those? The one to two sentence summaries that draws the reader in and describes the major tension of the tale? I’m sure you do and if you are like me and the rest of the writers out there you know that the finest loglines stand out, grab our attention, and are brief. I am placing emphasis on brief because it’s the most significant portion. Why? Because, it's crucial to focus on the key elements that make your characters and story unique. Not only that, but since your story only exists in your mind’s eye, you must set up the goal and how your character will achieve it. Did I mention you should do it in two sentences? Check out this post by Sue Bradford Evans on the long and short of it. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/16009-athe-logline-short-and-agonizing/#comment-24377
  15. With the seasons changing, I have started to emerge from my winter routine and return to my porch sitting and coffee drinking in the mornings. This morning there was a fox in my yard. He was happily frolicking until he saw a bunny. Then, to my surprise, he played with the bunny. I thought to myself that the bunny would surely hop away, but it didn’t. I thought he would run under the eight-foot monstrous fence my neighbor put up to keep the fox, deer, and other woodland creatures out, but he didn’t. Instead, it stood there, while the fox swatted it and sniffed it. He was passive about the entire situation and resided on whatever was to happen would happen. There was no active engagement, there was no reaction, nothing. I was confused and so was the fox. The more he tried to swat and bounce, the less the bunny did. It was amazing for sure. So, where am I going with this? We have all encountered the problem of a passive protagonist at some time in our lives, whether we are aware of it, or it is pointed out to us by a beta reader or an editing professional. But is your protagonist actually passive? And if your protagonist is, then what is wrong with that? Here are two fantastic reads on passive protagonists. https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/20166-seeking-vs-suffering-the-secret-of-passive-protagonists/#comment-28422 https://algonkianconferences.com/authorconnect/index.php?/topic/19906-active-protagonists-are-a-tool-of-the-patriarchy/#comment-28145
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