The characters in our essays, poems, songs, and stories embody our writing. Sometimes, characters speak for us, taking away the burden of theme, plot, idea, emotion, and mood. However, they do not exist until they are described on the page. If you want your readers to form a vivid impression of your characters, focus on:
Details that disclose characters’ psychologies and personalities
A character’s eye or hair color does not tell your readers much. When introducing a character, pay attention to details that reveal your character’s psychology and personality.
Unique character features
To describe characters convincingly, you must be able to show all the things that make them distinctive and unique. For instance, you may describe character’s voice as inflexible, dry, and dictatorial.
Characters’ gestures and body language
Showing character’s actions and gestures is an important part of describing a character vividly. A character’s gestures, body language, and movement can describe a lot about their psychological and personality state.
Writers who are well-known for their characterization
If you want to describe your characters vividly, look for strong character descriptions. Look for books written by authors who are famous for their characters. A good example of such author is Anton Chekhov.
The words comedy and humor are often used interchangeably. Although both terms have some elements in common, they also have some differences. Writing comedy is not the same as writing humor.
Usually, the humorist writes an article or essay that is funny or amusing. The humorist’s work is intended to be read. The comedy writer, on the other hand, writes material to get laughs, in front of a watching audience. Comedians are known for writing materials for comedy films, situation comedies, sketch comedy, and stand-up comics.
Comedy writing and humor writing are often based on truth. Frequently, both use the same humor devices like exaggeration, satire, and irony. Both also use the storytelling and anecdote.
Both Humour writing and comedy writing requires a punchline and setup. The intention of both of them is to create a comic effect. Humourists tend to write about subject matters that are funny. They also write about serious topics or subjects with the intent of making them amusing. So do comedy writers.
Despite many similarities, humor writing and comedy writing are different in some aspects. The intention of most comedy writing is to entertain by provoking laughter. On the other hand, most humor writing is more cerebral and subtle, intending to inform, amuse, persuade, and educate the audience.
Humour writing is mostly done for print publications, such as books, newspaper, or magazines. Most comedy writing, on the other hand, is done for comedy films, TV sitcoms, stand-up comedy, and comedy sketches.
As with academic writing or personal document, wring fiction stories can be challenging. However, by avoiding some habits, fiction writers can greatly improve their work. The following are habits that you should avoid in fiction writing:
Avoid generic nouns and verbs
Imagine painting everything in the world using three or four colors. Probably, the results would look pretty generic. Writers use language as their medium. Places, things, people have names, and its writer’s job to know what they are. Precise nouns work wonders because nouns have meanings that go beyond their definitions in the dictionary. Precise verbs also contribute significantly to characterization.
Avoid “he said “or, “she said”
A good dialogue can make readers feel like they are listening to a real conversation. When used repeatedly, the word “said” becomes very inconspicuous. If you find yourself using this word for every dialogue tag in your screenplay or manuscript, you are doing more harm than good.
Inconsistent point of view
A fiction writer must choose the point of view, or perspective, from which a story will be told. Once you have decided to use a certain point of view, be consistent. For example, if a story is told in the first person, the narrator must be present in all scenes he/she describes to the reader.
Although life is fantastic, it can also be busy, crappy, overwhelming and crazy at times. Sometimes we need an escape, and that is what good fiction gives us. We go to the movies for entertainment and escape. We read and write stories for the same reason.
Since time immemorial, humans have always enjoyed reading and listening to stories. Stories have been told around the campfire. The TV is one of a campfire, but there are some bad stories out there!
Giving people a break from craziness is valid. Entertaining people by creating a story from your mind is exciting. Isn’t it? We write fiction to challenge ourselves and to entertain ourselves and others. We read fiction to transport our mind to a new realm, who said there is no such thing as mind travel to another world? When you read my stories, we connect across space and time– it is a miracle.
We write fiction to give an emotional impact to our audience. We also write fiction to express our ideas and thoughts about various topics through what characters do and say. It is quite fascinating to use stories to explore topics like friendship, marriage, love, and sacrifice.
At some point in your career of your education, you may be required to write an autobiography. Whether you like making a presentation about yourself or you hate it, it is important to start with a positive thought. Your story might turn out to be more interesting than expected. With some brainstorming and some research, any person can write an interesting autobiography.
Before you begin to write an autobiography, it is important to know that your life story should have the basic framework that essays have, such as introductory paragraph, a body, and a conclusion. However, the trick is to make your story an interesting narrative. That means doing good research and taking notes.
Just like a famous person’s biography, your autobiography should have things like place and time of your birth, your likes and dislikes, an overview of your personality, and the events that shaped your life. Some things to consider are interesting things about the place where you were born, how the history of that region relates to your family history, and the reason your family came to that region.
Think about your childhood. Although you may not have had the most interesting childhood, you may have had a few memorable experiences. Highlight all the best parts when you can. It is also important to consider your culture in your autobiography. Culture is the overall way of life. It includes customs that came from the values and beliefs of your family.
After taking a look at your life from an outsider, select fascinating elements from your notes and establish a theme. You can turn one day or one event into a theme. It is possible that one day or one event in your life made such a noteworthy impact that it can be used as a theme.
Create an outline with activities or events that relate back to your main theme and turn those into body paragraphs of your story. Finally, tie up your experiences in a summary that explains and restates the central theme of your life.
In creative writing, the term “voice” has two different meanings. First, it is the style of the author, the quality that does not only makes his/her writing unique but also conveys the author’s personality, attitude, and character. Second, a voice is the thought patterns and characteristic speech of the narrator of a work of fiction. Voice is what enables the reader to hear the writing. Voice can also be said to be the spirit or breath that animates the writing.
Your choice of words, choice of content, tone, and punctuation make up the authorial voice. The voice of the author is usually fairly consistent, especially in third person narratives. Consequently, it is usually possible to recognize or identify the author just by reading a part of his or her work.
Every person has his/her way of putting together ideas, words, and phrases. These elements make up the “voice” of a person. Some people are funny; others are pompous, authoritative, warm, chatty, or combine various qualities to make up a distinct complex personality.
Whether you are writing a short story, flash fiction, novel or a blog post, finding a voice can be a struggle. Your voice should be uniquely your own. It should make your work pop and readers recognize the familiarity. Even if you borrow a sense of style from another author, your voice should be authentic.
Tone is the attitude of the fiction writers toward the readers and their subject. The tone of the write creates a mood or atmosphere for the story. The tone can be condescending, sarcastic, zealous, passionate, satirical, humorous, and so on. The writer’s tone can be anything the writer’s picks. In children literature, for instance, humor is an important tone.
The writers’ choice of diction often reveals their tone. The tone is mainly expressed by word connotation. For instance, some expressions might be interpreted as vulgar. Other expressions can be interpreted as sarcasm.
The tone is also about writer’s effect on the reader. What mood does the story create in the reader’s mind? The tone of a story may be optimistic, pessimistic, informal, formal, threatening, sad, humorous, serious, and joyful.
In formal writing, the tone should be concise, clear, courteous, and confident. In creative writing, the tone is more subjective. However, the writer should always aim to communicate clearly. Sometimes, genre determines the tone.
The tone in writing is not any different than your voice tone. You know that sometimes it is “how” you say it and not “what” you say. Every adverb and adjective you use, the imagery you use, and your sentence structure will show your tone.
The tone may remain the same throughout the story or can change very quickly.