character flaws

The Hero’s Arc: What’s Your Journey?

Silhouette of a woman with sword with text: What's *Your* Hero's Journey?

In storytelling, we often talk about the arc of our hero—the path of change and improvement they follow while trying to reach their goals and satisfy their desires. Like our characters, we have an arc, and we can take lessons from the hero’s journey of our characters and apply it to our life.

June 20, 2017

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Wonder Woman: The Essence of a Strong Female Character

Wonder Woman poster: Silhouette on a beach at sunset with added text: The Wonder of a Strong Female Character

What makes a “strong female character”? We can struggle to define them because we see so few successful portrayals of such characters—especially in movies. Luckily, Diana Prince in Wonder Woman is a wonderful (ha!) example, so let’s break down her strengths so we can push for more characters like her in our stories.

June 8, 2017

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Story Structure: What Should We Do for Trilogies?

Three blue chairs against a wall with text: Making Trilogies Work

If we’ve thought of writing a trilogy, we might have struggled with questions about how we should structure our stories over three books. Or how we should break up the plot and character arcs. Today, let’s try to answer those questions!

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February 14, 2017

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The Most Important Question in Storytelling: “Why?”

Question mark on white background with text: Character Motivations: Give Me a "Why?"

A common problem—even in traditionally published books—is Missing Motivations. A character’s goal can feel irrelevant if readers don’t understand why they have that goal. Or a character might seem stupid or unlikable if readers don’t know why they’re acting a certain way.

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January 26, 2017

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Backstory: When Is It Necessary?

Man holding picture of the back of his head with text: When Should We Reveal Backstory?

We often think about the purpose of backstory in terms of “what do readers need to know?” But with that perspective, it’s too easy to include too much backstory. Instead, we might be better off if we think about backstory from the perspective of what the story needs.

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September 13, 2016

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