Structure 101: The Beginning Of The End

And if all endings are just leading into new beginnings, then hope never dies.

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There are many ways to look at stories: Stories are about conflict, stories are about themes and messages, stories are just for entertainment, stories are a bright spot in a dark universe, stories are how we face our inner demons, stories are a series of words arranged in a certain way in order to describe a series of events.

But beneath all that quotable fluff that’s fodder for inspiration porn, beyond the genres and motives, stories share something under the hood: A beginning, middle, and end.

And now, the end is here. The final part of this small series.

I hope I’ve brought you cheer, and not the pain of courtroom juries.

I’ve talked from start to mid,  with nothing hid, wrote in a wry way.

And more, no more than this, I blogged it my way.

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Structure 101: Middling In The Middle

In fact, it is precisely because it is in motion and in progress that we say people get interrupted in the middle of-

There are many ways to look at stories: Stories are about conflict, stories are about themes and messages, stories are just for entertainment, stories are a bright spot in a dark universe, stories are how we face our inner demons, stories are a series of words arranged in a certain way in order to describe a series of events.

But beneath all that quotable fluff that’s fodder for inspiration porn, beyond the genres and motives, stories share something under the hood: A beginning, middle, and end.

…What do you mean I’m reusing last week’s intro? That’s an introduction designed to maintain continuity within a shared topic!

Continue reading “Structure 101: Middling In The Middle”

Structure 101: Beginning With Beginnings

As in “Once upon a time, there was this kingdom, things used to be good, then they got messed up because of this evil thing, and they were incapable of solving their own problems until a complete stranger showed up.”

There are many ways to look at stories: Stories are about conflict, stories are about themes and messages, stories are just for entertainment, stories are a bright spot in a dark universe, stories are how we face our inner demons, stories are a series of words arranged in a certain way in order to describe a series of events.

But beneath all that quotable fluff that’s fodder for inspiration porn, beyond the genres and motives, stories share something under the hood: A beginning, middle, and end.

And over the next few weeks, I’ll be taking a closer look at the skeleton of stories, starting with…the middle, clearly.

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Mentors: Meet De Mentors

Why not take the easy way out and make them your usual can of exposition and training?

Very few characters actually make it on their own. Even as loners, they had to learn from somewhere. They had to have a teacher, someone to actually teach them to acquire the skills and traits the author arbitrarily assigned to them.

Someone like a magical talking animal. Or a grizzled washed out wizard. Or the city streets themselves.

Or some weirdo on the internet giving introductions and tips to writing.

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Comic Book Deaths And You

“We have to retrieve Blue Beetle’s soul from the Phantom Zone and his body from Gorilla City and get Etrigan to stick the two together!”

Ah yes, death. The final answer. The culmination of a gripping battle or a long march. A powerful tool in the writer’s arsenal, meant to create SHOCK and DRAMA. For surely all will be touched by the loss of their loved one, the legacy and memories they leave behind, and all the emotions that come with it.

And then there’s comic book deaths.

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Don’t be so shocked. Isn’t religious Sonic fanart a thing?

As part of my usual target audience, you’re more than likely familiar with the concept. A character ‘dies’ only to come back to life later, sometimes to joyful celebration and other times to rolled eyes. And of course, you know the various ways this happens: clones, robot doubles, magic, time travel, bad/mad science, fight with Death itself, it was a dream, reality gets mixed up, the works. And of course, the classic “The fans/profits demanded it.”

There are plenty of articles to discuss this particular trope’s merits and faults, both from a literary and in-universe perspective, but I won’t be going into those. Instead, I’ll do my best to present the usual ways this plays out, and hopefully give you some fun and some tips about writing along the way. Because really, discipline aside, it IS important to have fun with writing.

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