The Five Whys #AuthorToolboxBlogHop

The Secret of the Five Whys

The secret of the five whys is known to a few writers, but it’s such an awesome way to know your characters and thus make plotting easier, that we had to share. Feel free to pass it on.

The five whys

A long time ago, when I started writing, a friend (hey, Lisa!) would grill me on my character’s motivation. One answer was never enough for her, she had to ask and ask and ask until the character was stripped bare. Only then would she relent and let me continue telling the rest of the story.

I named her method “The Five Whys” because that was the average number of times she asked me “Why?” about the character.

Let me give you an example.

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How to Build a Character Arc

How to Build a Character Arc

Impersonator. #AtoZChallenge. www.cherylsterlingbooks.com Character arc

A WRITER CAN POUR plot twists, solid conflict, steamy sex, non-stop action, and a fluffy kitty or two into a story and still miss the heart of the reader if the main characters in the story fail to demonstrate some sort of character arc. Readers relate to characters through their goals, motivations, and conflict, but also through their flaws, disappointments, and their triumphs. Characters that fight a flaw or inner demon and conquer it (or in a tragedy, fail to conquer it) will touch the reader on a deeper level.

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Cool Links 9-8-18

Cool Links 9-8-18

Cool links 9-8-18 edition looks at overue library books, odd things spillled on the road, paranormal travel destinations, and the Wizard of Oz.

Oops, forgot about that

There are two reasons I hesitate going to the library:

  1. I’ll bring home a mountain of books, my writing will grind to a halt, and I’ll spend the next three weeks reading. Not a bad concept, but I have to get my writing done.
  2. Despite email reminders, I’m afraid I’ll misplace a book and not return it.

One borrower could have used a friendly reminder. Fifty years after checking out a book from the Lexington Public Library, an anonymous borrower returned it by mail.

cool links 9-8-18 edition

Overdue fines capped at $6.75, a fact that, if the borrower knew, might have factored into an earlier return. He probably imagined a higher fee. Or maybe the book was misplaced.

You can read the story here.

What’s the latest you’ve returned an overdue book?

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