Plot driven versus character driven? All bullshit. | Hexebart’s Well

Plot driven versus character driven? All bullshit.

From the blog of Kim Wilkins

From time to time, aspiring writers ask me what is the best kind of story: one that is plot-driven or one that is character-driven? Somehow the idea that the two are distinct and one can be privileged over the other persists. “Character-driven” is usually seen as the mark of serious writing, while “plot-driven” is understood to be written by hacks pandering to the marketplace. This is a false distinction, and a potentially dangerous one at that. No writer can afford to overlook one or the other: a good story is driven by both good plot ideas and good characters. The trick is managing them right.

1. A story isn’t a story until it has people and problems. These two things (character and plot) cannot in any way be conceived outside of each othttp://www.quickmeme.com/img/8d/8dc1c587351499e97e4ebaf3e21ca63ba55b4fa764b8e4f9d0fe1c1d3cb0f582.jpgher. An idea for a fascinating character means little until that character is challenged in some way; and a high-stakes plot idea means little if it isn’t focalised through three-dimensional people whose thoughts and feelings can be communicated to the reader.

2. What the writer must know first and foremost is…

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Plot driven versus character driven? All bullshit. | Hexebart’s Well
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Five great links for writers

1. Nine Easily Preventable Mistakes Writers Make with Dialogue
http://www.thecreativepenn.com/2012/10/04/dialogue-mistakes/

2. Two Words Writers Should Avoid (while answering critiques)
http://writerunboxed.com/2013/07/09/two-words-writers-should-avoid/

3. Avoid the Passive Voice with Zombies
http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/avoid-the-passive-voice-with-zombies_b73753

4. Thirty-six Writing Essays by Chuck Palahniuk
http://litreactor.com/essays/36-writing-essays-by-chuck-palahniuk

5. Seven Things Dungeons & Dragons Taught Me About Storytelling
http://litreactor.com/columns/7-things-dungeons-dragons-taught-me-about-storytelling

 

Geoff Brown Talks to Alex Laybourne About Overcoming Adversity, Personal Triumphs… and Editing | Official Site of Alex Laybourne – Author

G.N. Braun (Geoff Brown) was raised in Melbourne’s gritty Western Suburbs. He is a trained nurse, and holds a Cert. IV in Professional Writing and Editing. He is currently studying for a Dip. Arts (Professional Writing and Editing). He writes fiction untied to any genre, and is the author of ‘Boneyard Smack’, ‘Bubba wants YOU’, ‘Insurrection’ (all available as free downloads from Legumeman Books) and ‘Santa Akbar!’ (published in Festive Fear: Global Edition, out through Tasmaniac Publications in Australia). He has a short story–’Autumn as Metaphor’–in the charity anthology Horror For Good, as well as numerous articles published in newspapers. He is the current president of the Australian Horror Writers Association, as well as the past director of the Australian Shadows Awards. His memoir, Hammered, was released in early 2012 by Legumeman Books. He is the owner of Cohesion Editing and Proofreading.

I like to begin my interviews with something gentle, so please tell us a little about yourself?

via Geoff Brown Talks to Alex Laybourne About Overcoming Adversity, Personal Triumphs… and Editing | Official Site of Alex Laybourne – Author.

Midnight Echo Issue 9, Edited by Geoff Brown » This Is Horror

Midnight Echo Issue 9, Edited by Geoff Brown (aka GN Braun)
eBook 150pp
Release Date: 31 May 2013

I edited this issue, and this review by UK site This is Horror is fantastic.

“Mythology is the theme for this issue of Midnight Echo, and it’s testament to the editors that the familiar and often overdone folklores are left out in favour of more obscure legends that will thrill, chill and enchant you.”

Read more via Midnight Echo Issue 9, Edited by Geoff Brown » This Is Horror.

Author Discovery Tip of the Week: Promote your Editor! – Authordiscovery.com

 

“It’s not just the $.99-$2.99 price point and Free e-book specials that have the traditional publishing establishment worried. It’s the .99 cent e-book with the terrible cover and the typos, grammatical errors, and poor story development that have them concerned. If readers are willing to buy these types of books, then traditional publishing truly is lost.”

Read more via Author Discovery Tip of the Week: Promote your Editor! – Authordiscovery.com.

Don’t make fun of renowned Dan Brown – Telegraph

This is just brilliant…

‘Renowned author Dan Brown smiled, the ends of his mouth curving upwards in a physical expression of pleasure. He felt much better.
If your books brought innocent delight to millions of readers, what did it matter whether you knew the difference between a transitive and an intransitive verb?
“Thanks, John,” he thanked.
Then he put down the telephone and perambulated on foot to the desk behind which he habitually sat on a chair to write his famous books on an Apple iMac MD093B/A computer.
New book Inferno, the latest in his celebrated series about fictional Harvard professor Robert Langdon, was inspired by top Italian poet Dante. It wouldn’t be the last in the lucrative sequence, either. He had all the sequels mapped out. The Mozart Acrostic. The Michelangelo Wordsearch. The Newton Sudoku.’

Read more via Don’t make fun of renowned Dan Brown – Telegraph.

LitChat Interview: Editor, Ellen Datlow – LitStack

“Multiple award-winning editor Ellen Datlow has been editing science fiction, fantasy, and horror short fiction for almost thirty years. She was fiction editor of OMNI Magazine and SCIFICTION and has edited more than fifty anthologies, including the horror half of the long-running The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror.Ellen is currently tied with frequent co-editor Terri Windling as the winner of the most World Fantasy Awards in the organization’s history nine. She has also won with co-editor Windling a Bram Stoker Award for The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror #13, and with co-editors Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant a Bram Stoker Award for The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror #17. She has also won the International Horror Guild Award for her anthologies The Dark and Inferno; the Shirley Jackson Award for Inferno and Poe; the Locus Award for Best Editor in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009, and the Hugo Award for Best Editor 2002, 2005, and Best Editor Short Fiction 2008 and 2009. In addition, SCIFICTION won the Hugo Award for best Web site in 2005 as well as the Wooden Rocket Award as best online magazine for 2005.”

Read more via LitChat Interview: Editor, Ellen Datlow – LitStack.

The importance of editing, Simon Bestwick & nuns, and the perfect Halloween viewing » This Is Horror

Without editors, gentle reader, most people in my profession would be screwed.Editors wipe our noses, change our nappies and make certain we’re not late for nursery school. They also pay off the police, bury the bodies, buy up all those naked photos from when we were young and needed the money and burn them for us. Or in my case, burn them for me, rinse their eyes with bleach then impale them with a letter opener and run around the office screaming: “I can still see them, oh God I can still see them!”

via The importance of editing, Simon Bestwick & nuns, and the perfect Halloween viewing » This Is Horror.

How NOT to Put Together a Short Story Collection | HTMLGIANT

DO NOT say to yourself, Well, I’ve got a lot of stories now, so I guess it’s time to shove them all into a manuscript and send it around. This is not a good reason to compile a short story collection. Are your stories good? Do they complement each other in some way? Do they reflect the very best of your writing? Then by all means, go to it. But be aware: selling a short story collection is very difficult. Editors like novels. Some presses only publish novels. This doesn’t meant that you won’t be able to sell your collection but do not think that this will be an easy task. As a short story writer, you already have an uphill battle to fight. If you’re working on a novel, or have a fantastic idea for a novel, it might be better to just do that instead. If, like me, you are deep-in-your-soul a short story writer, then I am sorry for you and glad for you. Just be prepared for a long slog.

via How NOT to Put Together a Short Story Collection | HTMLGIANT.

10 Marks of a Self-Disciplined Freelancer | FreelanceFolder

“You’re a freelancer. You’re creative. You’re innovative. You’re flexible. You’re tech savvy. But are you disciplined? If you think that you can succeed as a freelancer without self-discipline, think again. Self-discipline is one the most important traits a freelancer can have. It can mean the difference between completing a job and blowing a deadline. It can carry you through those tough freelancing experiences like rejection, stress, or the feast or famine cycle.In this post, I share ten marks of a self-disciplined freelancer. You can use this list as a checklist to determine what your level of self-discipline is and what areas you need to work on.”

via 10 Marks of a Self-Disciplined Freelancer | FreelanceFolder.