Writing tips

How to write a villain. Creating a villain.

Character Development – Creating a Villain

Today’s post looks deep into the skill of creating a villain.

Your story contains many elements that are critical: a main character, a plot, settings, etc. One of the most important is the villain or the antagonist. He adds depth and flavor to your story, more so than any other secondary character.

Who is your villain? Your villain is your antagonist, your protagonist’s main threat to reaching her goals. He stands in her way, creates conflicts, and forces her to make tough choices that tests her and ultimately makes her stronger.Click To Tweet

Let’s dig deep into creating a villain.

Continue reading Creating a Villain #AuthorToolboxBlogHop

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THE THREE ACT STRUCTURE is one of the most popular ways to plot a novel or screenplay. It’s the backbone of countless novels, TV shows and movies.www.cherylsterlingbooks.com

Today’s #ThrowbackThursday revisits the Three Act Structure

(Today’s post on the Three Act Structure is an excerpt from The Plot Thickens:21 Ways to Plot Your Novel.)

THE THREE ACT STRUCTURE is one of the most popular ways to plot a novel or screenplay. It’s the backbone of countless novels, TV shows and movies.www.cherylsterlingbooks.comTHE THREE ACT STRUCTURE is one of the most popular ways to plot a novel or screenplay. It’s the backbone of countless novels, TV shows and movies. It keeps the story moving, the reader turning pages and box offices busy. In its simplest form it consists of three parts:

  1. Beginning
  2. Middle
  3. End

Of course, much more is involved. Your daily trip to work has a beginning, middle and end. Hopefully, it’s uneventful, but boring isn’t what you want for your novel. Let’s re-label the three parts into:

  1. Setup
  2. Conflict
  3. Climax

Much more riveting, isn’t it?

Let’s look at each of these in depth.
Continue reading Three Act Structure #ThrowbackThursday

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7+ tips to revise your rough draft and take your book to the next level. www.cherylsterlingbooks.com

It’s #ThrowbackThursday

We’re in the wayback machine, revisiting revising. How to revise your rough draft is a problem all writers face.

For today’s AtoZChallenge, the letter “R” will show you how to revise your rough draft.

(This post is a revised {a pun!} copy of an earlier blog . I am recycling it for today’s AtoZChallenge. The information is as relevant. 7+ tips to revise your rough draft and take your book to the next level. www.cherylsterlingbooks.comI will show you 7+ tips to revise your rough draft and take your book to the next level).

I’ve just finished the final, final, final edits for Snow White and the Eighth Dwarf. Proofreading it was a long, laborious process, as I wrote 56K of the story last July in a rough NaNo like session. The first draft was not pretty. {Note:This book has been published and is available on Amazon as an ebook and paperback, and Smashwords.}

Let’s face the ugly truth. You’ve spent months, maybe years, writing a book and you have a big, sloppy mess. How do you revise your rough draft, clean it, and make it look good?

Look for inconsistencies.

Did your main character change names, eye color, or gender? Did you mention magic in the first chapter, but no one casts any spells? Does your forest setting change to a desert for no reason? Check your timeline to verify your protag and antag are on the same day. Because of the time involved in writing a book, many details can get lost. Look for inconsistencies and fix them.

Fill in the holes.

When proofreading, fill in the holes of your story. My first draft looks like a tic-tac-toe game.

My first draft looks like a tic-tac-toe game.

I write very fast because I don’t want the bright, shiny light of inspiration to dim. Get the words down, get them down fast is my motto. Fill in the holes later. My first draft is full of XXX’s, my all-purpose placeholder for research I need to do, nameless characters (example from my current WIP: “Name1, Name2, Name3, Name4 and Name5, thank you for coming here today.”), or descriptions that need filling in (example: more here of her physical trauma xxxx.) My first draft is a tic-tac-toe game. Revising is the time to do the research, decide on the names, and fill in the holes. Continue reading “R” is for Revise Your Rough Draft–#ThrowbackThursday

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