Search Results for: captain america 10-step

Captain America's 10-Step Guide to a Likable Hero

Captain America’s 10-Step Guide to the Likable Hero

Make me like your character, and I will follow him to the center of the earth, I will fight with him in the trenches, I will slog through bogs, brave tsunamis, and face down volcanoes for him. If I like your character, I won’t just read your book, I’ll ache when it’s over, buy it […]

August 2011 | Podcast Episode Archive

Subscribe to the Helping Writers Become Authors podcast on iTunes. August 2011 Why Your Protagonist and Antagonist Should Be Stuck Like Glue: Something has to be keeping your hero locked in his conflict with the antagonist – and vice versa. Captain America’s 10-Step Guide to the Likable Hero: Likable characters require careful crafting if they’re to […]

6 Bits of Common Writing Advice You're Misusing

6 Bits of Common Writing Advice You’re Misusing

Recently, I found myself reminiscing about some of the early books on writing advice that transformed and molded my understanding of storytelling and writing. They opened my eyes, honed my craft, and changed my life. I wouldn’t be the writer I am today without the solid writing advice I’ve received from the writers who have gone […]

The #1 Way to Write Intense Story Conflict

The #1 Way to Write Intense Story Conflict

One of the main pursuits of any writer is story conflict. The old saw tells us, “no conflict, no story,” so we’re always chasing after this little friction-causing engine. But as with so many things in writing, sometimes concentrating on the thing itself ends with us missing the forest for the trees. Story conflict is […]

The #1 Key To Relatable Characters: Backstory

The #1 Key to Relatable Characters: Backstory

Part 10 of The Do’s and Don’ts of Storytelling According to Marvel Ever stop to think about why you enjoy backstory? I receive lots of questions from writers about backstory, most of it along the lines of: I love my backstory soooo much. How can I cram as much as possible of it into the main story? I […]

How To Craft Dimensional Dialogue

How to Write Subtext in Dialogue

Part 5 of The Do’s and Don’ts of Storytelling According to Marvel Good dialogue comes down to five factors: 1. Advances the plot. 2. Accurately represents characters. 3. Mimics realism. 4. Entertains. 5. Offers subtext. These are also pretty much the “levels” in which we master dialogue. When we start out learning to write, our main concern is that the dialogue […]

how to plot your book start with the antagonist

How to Plot a Book: Start With the Antagonist

I hate antagonists. Not so much because they’re, you know, the bad guys. No, I hate them because 90% of the time, they bore me into catatonia. Evil plan to take over the world? Yawn. Just please do whatever you gotta do to make the hero look good. That’s how many authors approach their antagonists–as an […]

How to Control Reader Reactions to Character Sins

How to Control Reader Reactions to Character Sins

Your protagonist just messed up. Big time. We’re talking unforgivable sins here. Now, these sins are totally necessary to your plot. There’s no way you can write them out of the story just because they’re dark. But… here’s the rub. What if you’ve pushed your readers too far? What if they can’t stomach your character anymore […]

The Re-Readability Factor: Does Your Book Have It? (5 Ways to Make It Happen)

When I was a young reader, I had a horrendously bad habit. Whenever I started a new book, I would systematically read the front cover, the back cover, the front matter, the back matter–and then the final line of the book. I know, I know. Anathema. I clearly remember the day I swore to never do […]

Is Honesty the Most Important Trait in a Likable Character?

Memorable characters come in many shades—everything from Heathcliff’s murderous manipulation to Steve Rogers’s aw-shucks idealism. Sometimes the not-so-likable characters end up being all the more interesting and enduring for their inner darkness. But, generally speaking, most authors are on a mission to write a likable character. We want readers to fall in love with our […]