Monday, February 22, 2010
A Few Things I Learned About Writing
I wanted to post a few things I've learned lately about writing--particularly writing sci-fi and fantasy. Because, well, learning stuff is good for you. So, suck it up. :)
1 - As technology changes, culture changes. Human emotion, however, is fairly constant.
2 - The more empathy you can create for a villain, the more powerful they are at affecting your audience.
3 - What feels exotic (in setting/culture) to the characters will also be exotic to the readers.
4- The more you make magic like science, the less sense of wonder you provide the audience from the magic itself.
5 - Sci-Fi is our world as it could be. Fantasy is our world as it could never be. Horror is our world as it should never be.
6 - Horror is in essence about morality. It is a study of good vs. evil.
7 - Children have fears that are concrete and abstract at the same time. For example: being afraid of "the dark"
8 - Real people with real psychological problems believe what they are doing makes sense--even if no one around them agrees.
9 - It is crucial to know all your characters motivating factors.
10 - There are six major motivating factors in a child/teenager: 1 - sense of belonging 2 - sense of protection 3 - curiosity 4 - denial of curiosity (knowing everything) 5 - desire to make things happen and affect the world around them 6 - to become or act more like a grown up
So, I hear the 10 is the it number when it comes to lists these days, so I'll stop there. What have you learned about writing lately?
P.S. I'm excited to be attending the LDS Storymakers Conference in April. If you're coming too, see you there! :)
They're also having a VERY cool Show Your Love for the Storymakers Contest. Let's just say, if I win...I will be surrounded by coolness.