Friday, March 27, 2015

Look Around You

If you are having trouble writing the start of your next story -or maybe you don't know where to go with your current one- look around you. Life is full of inspiration. Did you recently go through a bad break up? Use that. Did something great happen at school? There you go!
The point is, if you really pay attention to what is around you there is inspiration. They key is to search it out.
For example, when I grew up in Arkansas, my grandparents live in this tiny little blue house on the corner of the street. To this day, I pretty much always find a way to use that very house in my stories.
Your life can be the most inspirational thing if you look close enough.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

10 Do's and Don'ts of Writing

I know it has been a while, but I am back with all new tips, ideas, and writing advice like never before! I have been spending the last couple of days researching and exploring the literary world to develop a list of five writing MUST DO'S and DON'TS.

The DO's:
1. Write from your heart. 
2.Write without editing, fixing, or checking.
3. Research what you are writing about. 
4. Maintain the personalities of your characters. Show them evolving. 
5. Put thought into your delivery.

The DON'TS:
1. Using the same plot line over and over again is never a good idea.
2. Don't reuse the same verbs and adjectives in every line. Mix it up a little bit.
3. Don't second guess what you are doing, just write. 
4. Don't write when you feel like it. Set aside time to write at least a little bit everyday. If you only do it when it seems like a good idea, you will never get anything done.
5. Don't work on too many works at one time.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Write Like You

As a teen writer, a lot of the time I feel like the works I write are a reflection of the talents of others. After reading The Mortal Instruments, I was determined to figure a way for me to write comfortably. After the Hunger Games and Divergent, I was dead set on writing a thrilling, action packed romance. After Fangirl and The Fault In Our Stars, I was more than ready to write a love story that had the ability to bring you to tears and break your heart. Eventually I had to settle into what I want to write and what I am GOOD at writing. I want to write from my heart, not that of the authors who inspire me and so many others. Don't get me wrong - I would take a bullet for a few mad geniuses who have brought us some of the most amazing literary masterpieces - but I want people to read my things and connect them to me as a person and as an author, not someone else. I want to being people to tears and crack them up by MY WORDS. That's what I have always wanted. If you want to write, let it come from your heart. Show everyone just who you are by the words you share. Let them see who you are, what you represent,

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Character Outline


I feel like I need to plan out my characters before I start writing their story. I usually make a story board, plot board, or a character outline. (I personally prefer the character outline because it goes in depth as to who your character is.) The following is a template I found to fill in with the details of your main character.

ORIGINS & FAMILY:
Name:
Nickname:
Reason for name:
Birthday:
Age:
Gender:
Place of birth:
Places lived since:
Parents’ names, backgrounds, occupations:
Number of siblings:
Relationship with family (close? estranged?):
Happiest memory:
Childhood trauma:
Children of his/her own?:
If so, relationship with their mother/father?:
Age he/she gave birth/became a father:

PHYSICAL
Height:
Weight:
Build:
Nationality:
Disabilities (physical or mental, including mental illnesses):
Complexion (freckles, acne, skin tone, birth marks):
Face shape:
Distinguishing facial features:
Hair color:
Usual hair style:
Eye color:
Glasses? Contacts?:
Style of dress/typical outfit(s):
Typical style of shoes:
Health (is this person usually sick? or very resilient?):
Grooming (does she/he wear makeup? shower daily? wear only clean clothes? pluck her eyebrows?):
Jewelry? Tattoos? Piercings?:
Accent?:
Unique mannerisms/physical habits (bites nails, talks with hands, taps feet when restless):
Athletic?: 

INTELLECT
Level of education (high school drop out, undergrad BA/BS, PhD, MD, etc.):
Level of self esteem:
Gifts/talents:
Shortcomings:
Style of speech (loud, mumbler, articulate, etc.):
"Left brain" or "right brain" thinker?:
Artistic?:
Mathematical?:
Makes decisions based mostly on emotions, or on logic?:
Neuroses: 
Life philosophy:
Religious stance:
Cautious or daring?:
Most sensitive about/vulnerable to:
Optimist or pessimist?:
Extrovert or introvert?: 
Level of comfort with technology: 

RELATIONSHIPS
Current marital/relationship status:
Sexual orientation:
Past relationships:
Primary reason for being broken up with:
Primary reasons for breaking up with people:
Level of sexual experience:
Story of first kiss (if any—if not, how does he/she want it to happen?):
Story of loss of virginity (if any—if not, how does he/she want it to happen, if at all?):
A social person? (popular, loner, some close friends, makes friends and then quickly drops them):
Most comfortable around (person):
Oldest friend:
How does he/she think others perceive him/her?:
How do others actually perceive him/her?:

VOCATION
Profession:
Past occupations:
Passions:
Attitude towards current job:
Attitude towards current coworkers, bosses, employees:
Salary:

SECRETS
(Every character—no matter how minor—should always have secrets!)
Phobias:
Life goals:
Dreams:
Greatest fears:
Most ashamed of:
Most embarrassing thing ever to happen to him/her:
Compulsions:
Obsessions:
Secret hobbies:
Secret skills:
Past sexual transgressions:
Crimes committed (and was he/she caught? charged?):
What he/she most wants to change about his/her current life:
What he/she most wants to change about his/her physical appearance:

DETAILS/QUIRKS
Daily routine:
Night owl or early bird?:
Light or heavy sleeper?:
Favorite food:
Least favorite food:
Favorite book:
Least favorite book:
Favorite movie:
Least favorite movie:
Favorite song:
Least favorite song:
Coffee or tea?:
Crunchy or smooth peanut butter?:
Type of car he/she drives (or wishes he/she drove):
Lefty or righty?:
Favorite color:
Cusser?:
Smoker? Drinker? Drug user?:
Biggest regret: 
Pets?

***It also helps to have a picture or sketch of how you picture this character. Take into consideration attitude, posture, and style of the actual character.***

I hope this template is as helpful as it has been for me!