Dos and Don’ts for Writing Viewpoint Voice

Many readers and editors state that a strong voice immediately draws them into a story, and one of the most important voices will come from your viewpoint character. But even when you’ve developed their personality and voice, it can still be tricky to actually get them on the page. Here are nine dos and don’ts […]

Tightening Your Focus

Tighten the focus of a novel

Tell the story from that person’s point of view. This is especially true if you have multiple protagonists, because it means that you will need to characterize those people by showing just how differently they relate to the world. Seeing the word through their eyes and being immersed in how that character thinks and feels, requires tightening your focus. 

Tightening Your Focus

When you’re writing a tale, it almost always turns out better if you get deep into the head of your protagonist and tell the story from that person’s point of view. This is especially true if you have multiple protagonists, because it means that you will need to characterize those people by showing just how […]

How to Write a Damned Good Scene, Part 2: Who Owns the Scene?

Many new authors will open a tale by telling us about their character: “Johnny Appleseed was a nice little kid with red hair and freckles.” They may want to tell us about how he loves to ride his bike around town and terrorize bluebirds and cats with his slingshot, how he loves his mom and […]

Handling Multiple Viewpoints

When you’re writing a novel, you will find that if you stick to only one point of view, it can be rather stifling.  The problem becomes that your protagonist must always be doing something interesting—fighting the good fight, running from villains, solving crimes, falling in and out of love, and so on.  Not only does […]

The Key to Making Your Book Better than the Movie

You’ve all experienced this: you went to a movie that was based on a book, and on the way out of the theater you heard the comments from others: “Oh, the book was soooo much better!” There are two reasons why this is almost always true: The book is far more immersive than the film.  It allows […]

Are You Writing a Book, or a Movie?

In his book on screenwriting, George Lucas briefly discusses the difference in approach between writing a movie or a book. Since this question lies at the heart of so many problems that I see with new writers, I want to get into it a bit more deeply. As Lucas points out, with a movie, the […]

Touching Your Audience Deeply through Viewpoint

My friend James Dashner has his movie The Scorch Trials out this week, and the audiences are loving it overall, but I suspect that if you listen in to the viewers as they come out of the theatre, you will hear the comment over and over, “The book was better.” I was just talking a […]