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7

I think it depends on what the main problem is in the novel. If the main problem is technical in nature, the reader needs to have some sense of what it technically possible. If the main problem is psychological or moral, however, what matters is the decision to use or not use the power in question. There is a whole cottage industry online doing "if A has ...


5

Being filled with regret does not necessarilly make your character pathetic. If what she is regretful about is truly horrible and self-damning, then that regret may be an appropriate response to the loss. It only becomes pathetic in the eyes of your readers, when what has been lost and is now sorrowfully missed, was never real or really valuable in the ...


4

Character-Driven Story Is Driven From Self-Concept Self-concept is one of the strongest powers on earth. That's because so many people have self-concepts which put them at odds with the world around them. Self-concept drives the actions a person takes. Because it is so real, it is the essence of what we search for in our stories. Self-Concept Drives ...


3

"Mom" and "mother" and the other variations are all common enough that alternating between them probably won't be disruptive. On the other hand, they are different, with nuances of formality and attitude - so if you're alternating between all of them, with great frequency, like you do in this sample - then yes, it does start to feel a little weird. I think ...


3

By definition, character-driven fiction is that where the plot takes a back seat to the characters. What's essential? Everything that's in a plot-driven story, really, just in a different balance. There is usually a plot, but its purpose is to keep the readers engaged while the author digs into the characters. A teacher of mine said plot is the shiny keys ...


2

Some people do. I don't. I prefer to discover who my characters are by just writing them. I'll put them in scene after scene with each other and see what happens. Sometimes the unexpected happens. This requires a lot of exploratory writing that might not make it into the final draft, but I find that this technique creates characters that are more natural, ...


1

How well do YOU understand the physics of what the character is doing? If you have a detailed, fully internally consistent process worked out, then you can probably just allude to it in very general terms if the in world population wouldn't understand it (and perhaps the character himself doesn't have the scientific vocabulary to articulate it if he is the ...


1

I suggest a popular literary technique called 'indirect characterisation' If your writing in first person; write about her thoughts and reasons and actions. If she is approached by someone who speaks and she reveals how that person has affected her ,good or bad. If in second person you may start a chapter revealing that she had suffered a breakdown and is ...


1

While through your description i assume your story is a serious one, i think your best point of reference would come from comedy. It is a common trope in comedy, specially british comedy, to have characters who don't like anyone else, or that aren't particularly interested in anyone else. Like for example Jim, from Yahtzee Croshaw comedy novel "Mogworld". "...


1

Addressing characters in dialogue: Anything goes. I usually call my mum 'mum', but I might call her 'mother' to be mock-serious. 'Queen of the Muffins'? Sure, if in the middle of some exchange it makes sense for me to call her that, as a joke, as an insult, whatever — you can put it in my dialogue. Addressing characters in the narrative: Orson Scott Card!...


1

I've had a related discussion with my wife two weeks ago about whether there's anything significant about men writing a female protagonist and women writing a male protagonist. For example, Robin Hobb writing about FitzChivalry, or Witi Ihimaera writing about Paikea. In the end, my wife and I concluded together that the protagonist's gender is really only ...


1

My advice (Probably not helpful advice, but still) Make the character relatable You have probably heard this a million times, but it is important. Many readers, including me, are turned off by relatable characters. And I've also learned "relatable" does not mean "average". The character could be the leader of an empire, but they're still human. They have ...


1

I see three keys to character-driven stories: The character wants something strongly enough to struggle for it. The character has a unique reason for wanting the thing. Something about the character makes the struggle more difficult. The first one is common to all stories. I'm not sure the second one is essential, but it sure helps. Give the character a ...


1

I have not been in any kind of trauma, but here we go. You said the protag. is in shock. There is a change they would experience "survivor's guilt"(If I'm reading this right). It happens when everyone else in the party dies and the patient doesn't. The patient then tends to think it's unfair, and that they should have gone as well. I probably didn't help at ...


1

Every human being strives to establish a place in the world, to be seen and accepted in a certain way. Their voice, the way they react to each situation, is developed in an attempt to establish and maintain that place. Their way of speaking, their vocabulary, their boldness or timidity, is shaped by the place they wish to claim and maintain. What they say ...



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