May 15, 2020

By Barbara Linn Probst

Writing a book is hard. So is getting published, and so is achieving success as a writer. If that’s true, then why do we do it?

We may have asked ourselves this question, and others may have asked us. It’s not always an easy question to answer! Our reasons can be complex, difficult to articulate, and uncomfortably personal, making us feel vulnerable and exposed. Yet it’s a question worth asking—especially now, when many of us are struggling to find the energy and motivation to keep going. We read editorials about how important books are right now, and how stories have always been a source of comfort and healing and hope. That’s true—for readers. For writers, it’s more complex.

So I asked fellow writers: Why do you write? And why are you writing this particular book? Their responses, together with my own reflections, point to three primary reasons that I’m calling artistry, identity, and legacy. They’re not mutually exclusive, of course. People can write for more than one reason, or for different reasons at different times. As one person noted: “Sometimes it’s to reach out for connection with others, and sometimes it’s for my eyes only.”  

Artistry: the act of writing

Writing is both art and craft. Like painting, sculpture, or musical composition, writing allows us to create something new; like singing, playing an instrument, or acting, it allows us to express our creativity through a vehicle that someone else has provided. Language, rather than colors or sounds, is our tool.

Writing is art because it can evoke emotions and meanings that go beyond the surface of the words themselves. It’s also craft because it requires skills that have to be learned and practiced. While one can argue that some forms of writing, such as experimental poetry, are art precisely because they reject all conventions, conventions and skills are not the same thing, and I think it’s fair to say that good writing requires the development of skill, in one form or another.

As with all forms of artistic expression, people write because they have something they want to convey—a vision, a passion, a need to give voice, that they can’t quite account for and can’t quite control. One person wrote: “It’s a compulsion, brought on by these characters 'knocking on my imagination's door' screaming to be let out!” Writing is an outlet, a release, an itch that simply must be scratched. The story or characters won’t take no for an answer.

For some, it’s not so much a particular story clamoring to be written as it is the more generic opportunity for self-expression and exploration, “because it's such a thrill to compose and play and weave and see what happens.”

There’s a blend of the personal and the impersonal in the artistic process—the joy of the creative experience (a personal pleasure), and the sense of being a channel or vessel through which a story makes itself known (being “called,” in service of the story).

In short, people write for the meaning they derive from the act of writing.

Identity: the state of being a writer

Being a writer is an identity: it’s who I am (or want to be) and where I belong. “Writing stories is all I've ever wanted to do,” and “It’s just who I am.”  As one person put it: “it just feels like my identity. I know, I know, you're not supposed to BE your work, but I'm not sure how to separate it.”

Others wrote about the experience of community, of finding one’s tribe. “I have met ‘my people’ in the writing community. A joyful side-effect of writing a book!”

Being a member of a community—claiming a place, asserting one’s right to the identity that accompanies membership—can, for some, evoke insecurity as well as connection. Do I have the right to call myself a writer? Am I good enough, as good as the others? Writers, regardless of what they’ve published or accomplished, sometimes speak of what’s called imposter syndrome—feeling unworthy and afraid of revealing one’s inauthenticity. It’s tricky because there’s no objective criterion for calling oneself a writer, no license or test, the way there is for calling oneself a doctor.

For some people, the identity of writer only belongs to those who’ve published. Unpublished writers are apprentices, members-in-waiting, hoping for legitimacy and entrance to the community. This is tricky too. Without a clear and common definition, I may think of myself as a “writer,” though my friends and family don’t. Or it can go the other way, as others urge me to claim an identity that I don’t feel I’ve earned.

It’s interesting to note that there are times when the focus on publication actually detracts from the sense of identity as a writer. One person confessed that, after achieving the longed-for goal of publication, “it took me years to come back to the joy of rediscovering the sacred place of writing.”

In short, people write because it’s a way to embrace an identity.

Legacy: the gift of having written

We write for ourselves, because we must, and we write for others. Although there can be a deep fulfillment in the experience of putting ideas and images into words—an experience that’s complete in itself—most writers do want their work to be read. Writing is restorative, healing, profoundly satisfying. But it’s relational too.

Through writing, we hope to touch others, and to continue to touch them after we’re gone. Whether it’s egoism or simply part of being human, we want to make a difference, to be remembered. Our writing is part of our legacy, stamped with our name.

There can be an impersonal aspect to this, as well—the wish to make sure that the story itself isn’t lost, especially if it’s a story about an individual or group that might not be able to tell it themselves. We can be the one to bear witness or bring a forgotten era to life.

In short, people write because it’s a way to leave something behind.

Final Thoughts

Artistry, identity, legacy, or a combination of all three?  

Whether writing is an item on a late-in-life bucket list, an unfulfilled longing from childhood, or something that’s always been part of our lives—we feel its summons. We need to get the stories out of our heads and onto the page, to reach others and be read. As one person put it, the urgency to write “sometimes scares me and at other times gives me wings.”

For me, personally, artistry and legacy are the strongest motives.  I love the process and want to give back to others in a meaningful, enduring way.

What about you? Why do you write? Please share with us down in the comments!

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About Barbara

Barbara Linn Probst is the author of much-anticipated Queen of the Owls, published by the visionary, award-winning She Writes Press. Queen of the Owls has been chosen by Working Mother as one of the twenty most anticipated books for 2020 and is the May 2020 selection of the Pulpwood Queens, a network of more than 780 book clubs throughout the U.S. To order or learn more, please visit http://www.barbaralinnprobst.com/.

Queen of the Owls by Barbara Linn Probst

A chance meeting with a charismatic photographer will forever change Elizabeth’s life. How much is Elizabeth willing to risk to be truly seen and known?

Click here to read more or to order the book.

Top Photo Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

May 13, 2020

by John Peragine

I often ponder what types of books and genres I can write. There are many genres I enjoy reading, but can I write in them? Do I have the knowledge to be able to write about subjects I've read about, where I lack any related life experience? What limits does my experience place on my writing?

As a ghostwriter, I steer toward book genres and subjects I am familiar with. I avoid projects in very technical areas like deep finance or medical research, as I don't have a working knowledge of those subjects. I'd be limping along to try to write them. Ghostwriting is about getting into the person's head and bringing out their story, but I must still step into their experience to make it real on the page. Sometimes, I just can't.

I believe anything is possible, but not everything is probable. It is improbable that, in my current lifetime, I can do justice to some specific genres.

Stepping Into New Genres and Niches

There are all sorts of interesting genres out there. Some of them, like Romance, are even lucrative. And while I've said a few romantic lines in my life, I couldn't even begin to touch that genre. It would take an extraordinary amount of time for me to even figure out what would qualify as romance.

On the other hand, I recently obtained my real estate degree. When I applied this knowledge to my writing, I started with the area I knew the most about: my own backyard. By combining my limited experience as a real estate agent with my existing knowledge of wine and vineyards, I was able to talk confidently about backyard vineyards. Previously, I wouldn't have even considered writing about real estate.

The article: https://www.realtor.com/advice/home-improvement/i-grew-a-vineyard-in-my-backyard/

There is a difference between book knowledge and experiential knowledge.

Most people are not immediately ready to be professional in their chosen field after high school, or even college. Doctors struggle through years of internships and residencies before they are prepared to hold their own as a board-certified physician. They spend even longer before they are ready to do surgery.

When I was a social worker, and I knocked on a person’s door after receiving a report of child abuse or neglect, I was invariably asked: are you a parent? The common thought was that if I'd never experienced being a parent, then how could I have the audacity to talk to the person on the other side of the door about parenting? They were probably right. My world, my ideas, and my values all shifted when I became a parent.

Writing requires that we step into experiences we can only imagine.

Can I do justice to a teenage girl dealing with heartbreak? Can I step into the mind space of a high powered trial lawyer facing billion dollar corruption across the courtroom (when my only experience in court was for a traffic ticket)?

As writers, we try to pull off situations like these and more. Are there ways to make it easier?

Short stories are one way to do this.

In the past year, I have challenged myself by entering into the various short story contests offered through NYC Midnight.

What I really love about these competitions is that they assign you a random genre, with a few story elements thrown in. You might be assigned everything from a thriller to a Rom-Com, and then have two days to write a complete story about it.

Competitions like this have helped me in two ways:

  • They required that I step outside of my comfort zone.
  • They've helped me make a list of genres I was rotten at, and now I know those genres are not for me.

Experience and Knowledge Can Fade

At fifty, I feel I have the gift of long sight. But much like my current eyeglass subscription, even though I can see things in the distance, they are a little hazy and challenging to make out. Sometimes I have to squint and move my glasses around to see clearly.

The same is true when I write about people younger than me. I was a child, a teen, a person in their 20s or 30s. I remember scenes and experiences from those periods of my life, but there are huge gaps. While I remember the highlights of my first crush, I have to dig to put to words those feelings. Those feelings were knotted inside a twisty ball of emotions, but some of the sensory details are still crystal clear.

When I write a teenager or a child into a story, it's often a stretch to remember what that experience was like. The further back I go back in time, the tougher this process can be.

The wisdom that comes with age doesn't always make us wiser on a subject.

Those early experiences embed inside our psyches, and create the beautifully flawed individuals we become. Those early experiences make us who we are. And no matter how accomplished we are as writers, to a certain extent, we are all confined by those experiences.

My advice to new writers

Our understanding of the world is influenced by the writers who came before us. We can speculate on what a world looks like, how a ship flies, or which magic an elf possesses, but these speculations are often fueled by the stories of writers who came before us.

I recommend to new writers that they make it a practice to read all kinds of books. Good books, bad books, books they must hide under the bed, and books that are better off being used to start a fire. Reading is experiential learning to which there is no substitute.

Understanding concepts like the hero's journey, described by Joseph Campbell, is vital because it permeates the marrow of most stories whether they're fantasy or romance or science fiction.


We are limited by what we know. This is why it's crucial to read widely in the genre we choose to write in. Each genre has mechanisms, expectations and specific mechanics. To get better at a genre you are less familiar with, first read widely and then just start writing. Practice. Write short stories.

Practice, and then practice some more.

As an example, from an early age I studied playing the flute. I took lessons and practiced for years until the process of playing became muscle memory. Although I haven't picked up my flute in a few years, I'd wager the memories would surface quickly, and I could play it without completely starting over the learning process.

I am a good musician, but that doesn't mean I am great at all music. There are styles I am better at than others, usually influenced by listening to and studying a lot of music I liked. I can play the hell out of symphony but can't swing a beat to save my life. I can confidently say: all the practice in the world won't make me a great jazz musician.

Great writing requires practice. A lot of practice. Write, edit, show, toss, rinse, wash, and repeat.

Pick a genre you are passionate about because writing practice is often tough and monotonous until those great writing skills develop. Half-baked writing results in half-baked books: often gooey and not very appealing.

Writing What You Know

Probabilities are odds, and I am always looking for ways to improve the odds. This requires honest conversations with myself. Can I write a thriller based on a spy from China? Do I know what being a spy is? Do I know the culture well enough not to make people angry with stereotypical flat characters?

There are things we know, things we can learn, and things we will never figure out. This sort of knowledge helps us do three things:

  1. We know which genres would take us the longest to learn. This knowledge may determine whether pursuit of that genre would provide a diminished return.
  2. We know our strengths. You know where you are an expert, with knowledge you can confidently weave into any story. For me, that is music, gardening, herbs, social work, psychology, and the application and removal of clown makeup. Try to incorporate these areas of expertise in the stories you write.
  3. We know which topics we want to learn more about. Research is often fun, and a potential rabbit hole if we don’t manage our time. Online research, books, subject matter expert interviews, and instructional videos are all available to us. (Masterclass.com and Writersdigest.com are a couple of my favorite resources).

Open Your World

Sitting in front of a computer or entering a classroom doesn’t bring us any closer to having real-life experiences to draw on when we're writing. Go live life.

Even in these crazy times, we can find ways to make connections with others and visit new places. The more we experience life, the more neural connections that are made in our brain, which makes us more brilliant in our writing.

Be brilliant, my friends!

What topics or skills do you know really well? What do you want to know more about? What is one thing you can do today to increase your life experiences?

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About John

John Peragine

John Peragine has published 14 books and ghostwritten more than 100 others. He is a contributor for HuffPost, Reuters, and The Today Show. He covered the John Edwards trial exclusively for Bloomberg News and The New York Times. He has written for Wine EnthusiastGrapevine Magazine, Realtor.com, WineMakermagazine, and Writer's Digest.

John began writing professionally in 2007, after working 13 years in social work and as the piccolo player for the Western Piedmont Symphony for over 25 years. Peragine is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. His newest book, Max and the Spice Thieves, will be released this Fall.

May 11, 2020

by Melinda VanLone

We've spent quite a bit of time on various blogs here at WITS talking about what makes a good cover for your genre, and about why you should invest in one. Now that you're convinced you need one, what's the next step?

If you're reading this, I assume it's because you're not a graphic designer and you are in the position of having to hire one to do a cover for you. You are probably wondering how much a book cover costs. If that's you, then keep in mind the old saying you get what you pay for.

That doesn't mean you can't get a fantastic, effective cover for an affordable price. It just means that more of the work might fall on your shoulders. Below are examples of how you can make book covers more affordable.

Pre-Made Covers

Price range: approximately $29-$149
Advantages: Low cost, Low customization, Low Service.

In general, pre-made covers are a "what you see is what you get" proposition, with the only customization being the title and author name. Don't count on even being able to change the font, much less any of the artwork. These covers are low cost because the designer doesn't have to spend an hour tweaking it to fit your specifications. That said, it's possible to get a fantastic cover this way.

There are plenty of great designers making pre-made covers. The trick is to keep in mind what works for your genre and choose accordingly. The burden is on you, not the designer, to find the artwork that conveys your story in the right way.

Be sure to check that the cover you've selected is "exclusive," meaning it won't ever be sold to anyone else, and check to see if the price you pay includes a print cover as well as ebook. If it doesn't, be sure to ask how much extra the print version will cost you unless you have no intention of ever offering a printed version of your book.

One place to find pre-made covers is TheBookCoverDesigner.com, but there are many others out there. Some designers offer this in addition to other services.

This pre-made cover features both a background and a model that are readily available at several stock photography sites, along with a little photoshop grunge, none of which can be altered. The only thing that will change once your purchase is the title and the author name.

Semi-Custom Cover 

Price range: approximately $150-$600+
Advantages: Medium cost, Medium customization, Medium Service.

The majority of book cover designers fall into this category. These designers use photography from various stock sites (see my previous blog post for a list of good ones), and their Photoshop skills to create your cover. As you can imagine, the skill set varies wildly from designer to designer, which is why the price range is so large.

This type of design includes the following:

  • Designer will create artwork based on input you give them regarding your story.
  • They usually charge a flat fee.
  • Often includes 1-2 rounds of edits after the initial concept is delivered.

Note: Be sure to get the price for the print wrap included in your quote.

At the lower price points in this range, the designer might be fresh out of school and trying to build a portfolio, or someone just entering the field who is trying to get a stable of work built up quickly.

At the higher end, they might have expertise in Photoshop and design, plus years of experience backing it up. They might have marketing skills to offer as well, and will help steer you toward the right kind of cover for your genre.

A semi-custom cover gives you the opportunity to have a fairly custom look for a lower price than one might expect. However, the designer will most likely use a stock model or background that has been used on hundreds of other covers. While there's a lot of stock images out there, the number of suitable models for book covers is surprisingly limited per genre once you start looking for the urban fantasy girl or the beefcake guy. The designers on the higher side of this category are skilled at taking a stock image and twisting it in such a way as to disguise the fact that your girl has been on a hundred other covers in the last month. 

One of the best ways to find a designer in this category is word of mouth. Look for covers that you like and check the copyright page to see if they've credited the designer, or contact the author if they haven't.

Other options to find designers:

  • Ask around on various Facebook author groups, or among your author friends. 
  • BookCoverCorner.com is one place among many that offer this service.
  • Browse websites like 99Designs.com where you can list your project and have designers compete for your business.  

This Stronger Than Magic cover features both a model and a background readily available on stock sites, along with a custom logo in the background and Photoshop special effects on the logo, the girl and the water. This cover was fully designed and customized, but did not include a photoshoot.

Custom Cover

Price range: $599+
Advantages: High cost, High customization, High Service

A fully custom cover involves a photographer, a model (or two or three), and/or hand-drawn artwork, digital or otherwise, that can't be duplicated by anyone else.

These designs might use some stock photography for parts of the background, but the model will be one hired specifically for your cover. The shots obtained won't be used on any other cover, meaning the face that represents your story or series will be unique. Often they use their own personal photography for the background as well, or if they don't, they blend stock images in such a way that no one will ever know it was stock.

This cover for Raegan Reid - Rifter features a model located through my author newsletter, and included a trip to Atlanta in order to do a photoshoot with her, along with Photoshop work for special effects and background blending.

These one-of-a-kind covers are usually priced accordingly. That said, often a designer will negotiate costs if you are working on a series, and therefore will need more than one cover with the same general theme. One photoshoot of a model can go a long way, so the price per cover often comes down. BookCoverCorner.com (full disclosure - it's yours truly) is one place that offers a fully custom cover.

Final Thoughts

You can find quality covers at every price point with enough research. The real question is how much control do you want to have, and how unique would you like your cover to be?

How did you get your existing book covers? What did you like and dislike about the process? Do you have questions for Melinda, or tips to share? Post them down in the comments!

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About Melinda

Melinda VanLone writes urban fantasy, freelances as a graphic designer, and dabbles in photography. She currently lives in Florida with her husband and furbabies.

When she's not playing with her imaginary friends, you can find Melinda playing World of Warcraft, wandering aimlessly through the streets taking photos, or hovered over coffee in Starbucks.

Her elementary fantasy series, House of Xannon, begins with Stronger Than Magic. For more information on covers, visit BookCoverCorner.com.

Top Image by Andreas Lischka from Pixabay

May 8, 2020

byJulie Glover

Writing process is a topic of ongoing conversation among writers, whether just starting or multi-published. Plenty of books and articles have been written and workshops and webinars held to suggest this writing process or that one, claiming it’s The Way It’s Done.

While savvy writers out there reject the one-size-fits-all message, we still have certain presumptions that we mostly swallow. One of these can be summarized as…

Write First, Edit Later

There’s no end to the advice to simply turn off your inner editor and vomit words onto the page. Just get the story down!

Consider these quotes from some truly great authors:

"Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. Never correct or rewrite until the whole thing is down." ~ John Steinbeck

"Don't cross out. (That is editing as you write. Even if you write something you didn't mean to write, leave it.) Don't worry about spelling, punctuation, grammar. (Don't even care about staying within the margins and lines on the page.) Lose control. Don't think. Don't get logical. Go for the jugular." ~ Natalie Goldberg

"Simply refuse to look at anything you have written until the last page is done. Period." ~ James Frey

"Don’t get it right, just get it written." ~ James Thurber

"Write the first draft as if you’re out for a spontaneous night with a devastatingly handsome man you met abroad. Run wild, take chances, and don’t even consider the possibility that you’re making the wrong choice. Just go for it." ~ Christine J. Schmidt

Obviously, this works for many, or even most, writers. Too often, we don’t know enough about our plot and characters, and the first draft is our opportunity to discover, explore, learn, and hone our story.

If that process works for you, embrace it.

But Is It True for Everyone?

W. Somerset Maugham presumably said, “There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.”

We don’t all write the same, and a process that turns out one writer’s best work could be the death of another’s work. Let’s look at four reasons why editing as you go is a terrific idea for some authors.

1. Get the Foundation Solid

You may be writing along and reach a point in the novel where you feel unmotivated, stuck, or that something’s just off. Perhaps you can’t put your finger on it, but something isn’t working the way it should.

We talk about story structure because we understand that a novel needs a decent foundation to hold up well. That includes a plot without holes, a strong character arc, a compelling antagonist, and much more. But whether you plotted or pantsed this far, you might have a kink in your structure and continuing to write scenes would be like adding more stories onto a tilted house.

Going back and fixing the problem, or editing as you go, could keep your story from needing a total renovation later.

2. Close the Pop-up Window

“Turn off your inner editor,” they say. But what if you realize something should be fixed in the last act, the last scene, or the last page and not doing so means your inner editor keeps reminding you?

Your “I need to fix that” may not go away with a note in the margin. Rather, for some it's like a pop-up window on a website that you can't get to close. It just keeps popping up.

However, if you went back and edited in the moment, your mind could settle, your inner editor could chill, and you could write forward more effectively.

3. Revise While You Reorient

Not everyone remembers where they left off writing. Some writers read what they wrote the day before, or longer, to reorient themselves. And it can be efficient to revise right then what needs changing.

Of course you don’t want to perfectly polish words that won’t end up in the final draft. But you might add setting, viscerals, character details, etc. as you go over your previous scenes and prepare for your next writing session.

4. Fix It Before You Forget It

What happens when a fresh idea comes to you about a scene you’ve already written? In the “write now, edit later” paradigm, you'd jot a note somewhere and add it in the second draft. But if you're me, you'll have forgotten just what you were thinking by the time you read that rough note.

Rather than writing a long note your forgetful self will later understand, you may as well just fix the scene. If you wait too long, you could lose that brilliant thread and be unable to weave it into the story.

Should You Edit as You Go?

I don’t know if it’s better for you to plunge straight through a first draft or edit as you go. But I previously wasted time trying to use a writing process that didn’t work for me, and I want other writers to feel free to do what works for them.

Moreover, some successful authors do edit as they go! Here are a few more quotes to consider:

“It takes me six months to do a story. I think it out and write it sentence by sentence—no first draft. I can’t write five words but that I can change seven.” ~ Dorothy Parker

“I’ve been a rolling-reviser since my earliest writing, back in the Jurassic Era before computers and word processors….It is part of my process because my backbrain simply will not cooperate if it isn’t really, really sure that what I have already written is a solid foundation for whatever is currently at the leading edge of the story.”  ~ Patricia C. Wrede

“Before I start to write, the night before—I mean, when I finish work at the end of the day, I go over the pages, the page that I’ve done that day, and I mark it up. And I mark it up and leave it until the morning, and then I make the corrections in the morning, which gives me a way to start the day…” ~ Joan Didion

“By the time I am nearing the end of a story, the first part will have been reread and altered and corrected at least one hundred and fifty times.” ~ Roald Dahl

Whatever process you adopt, you should get the book done. This post does not give you permission to spend fifteen years piddling, polishing, and perfecting a novel when you know you need to finish already. But I remain in defense of editing as you go as a perfectly acceptable process and truly valuable for many writers.

Do you write first and edit later, or do you edit as you go? Why or why not?

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About Julie

Julie Glover writes mysteries and young adult fiction. Her YA contemporary novel, SHARING HUNTER, finaled in the 2015 RWA® Golden Heart® and is now on sale! When not writing, she collects boots, practices rampant sarcasm, and advocates for good grammar and the addition of the interrobang as a much-needed punctuation mark.

Julie is represented by Louise Fury of The Bent Agency. You can visit her website here and also follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Sources:

May 6, 2020

by Fae Rowen

We all make hundreds of decisions every day, whether it’s to go one more day without washing our hair or deciding what we're going to read. Most of those decisions are routine and unremarkable. But I bet you can remember a seemingly unremarkable decision that had a big impact on your life.

This is true of your characters as well. There are important decisions that can affect the entirety of your character's life. Four particular areas carry a lot of power in guiding your main character through the story: motivation, backstory, conflict and character arc.

Decisions that show motivation

What if... In the beginning of your book your character makes an unpopular decision. We'll say it’s to quit school. Your reader may not agree. It's even better if your reader doesn't agree. You can get them to change their minds and their hearts.

If you show the why of how much, how long your character has wanted to do this very important thing, you build the motivation that will guide your story.

Maybe your character wants to join the military because of her brother’s service and questions around his death, or start a business, or volunteer with elders. Perhaps you show how much she loves art and working with artists. Maybe she paints “on the side” but it is a secret she’s never revealed. Perhaps you show how her love of her grandmother and listening to her grandmother’s stories has filled her heart with her family.

Whatever you choose, pick something that speaks to your characters overall motivation.

Decisions that reveal backstory

What if your character’s parents’ marriage was bad? As in a society father who flagrantly cheated on the character's mother? Backstory like this explains his reticence to become engaged. And if he finds out about a pre-nup that was very negative for his mother, won't it make sense for him to resist when his father pressures him to get a pre-nup of his own?

I bet you can think of lots of possibilities for a short backstory scene that will reveal a character’s reticence or determination about something.

Decisions that cause conflict

Your female lead comes downstairs for a family dinner, wearing green. Not her favorite color, but why are her parents livid? Because the dinner is in honor of a knight whom they are hoping will ask for her hand. His coat of arms is red. His enemy’s is green.

You got it. She doesn’t want to marry the man her parents want her to. She may or may not have feelings for the “green knight.” Whatever the reasons, conflict is sure to ensue.

Decisions that show character arc

In PRISM 2: Rebellion (available for pre-order July 1), the hero, Jericho, is the son of the wealthiest and most powerful man on Earth. Over the course of the two books you see his perception change from wanting to make his first billion by the time he’s twenty-five to recognizing his father’s deceit and disregard for planet Earth and the people under his care.

Jericho has fallen for O’Neill, his pilot and bodyguard on Prism. His decision to marry her is problematic because she cannot leave the prison world. He considered travelling back and forth from Earth, but it is a six-month round trip that he’s already made once.

When Jericho decides he can't bear not seeing O'Neill every day, his inheritance, his privilege, his way of life no longer matter. His entire character arc changes with that decision. Now he is more concerned that he has no skills suited to surviving on a planet that's awaiting a mercenary invasion financed by his father. And no matter what, he isn’t leaving O’Neill.

Are you struggling to show motivation, backstory, backstory, or character arc? Are you trying to come up with a decision your character needs to make to move your story forward? Share it down in the comments so our WITS readers can help you get writing again!

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About Fae

Fae Rowen discovered the romance genre after years as a science fiction freak. Writing futuristics and medieval paranormals, she jokes that she can live anywhere but the present. As a mathematician, she knows life’s a lot more fun when you get to define your world and its rules.

P.R.I.S.M., Fae's debut book, a young adult science fiction romance story of survival, betrayal, resolve, deceit, and love is now available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Fae's second book in the series will be available for pre-order on July 1, 2020.


2014-2020

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