Be Among the Lucid

Sometimes, what a story needs most is hidden from your view

Join the newsletter to learn things like ‘How to Find Your Writing Voice Without a Single Keystroke’ and ’The Plot Structure in Best-selling Novels’.

3 Ways to Create a Villain (Who Audiences Want & Heroes Need)

Remember the Create a Villain post I wrote for the awesome Christine Frazier at Better Novel Project? Well, I just finished working with someone to create an infographic for it. Take a look below, and holler in the comments to let me know your favorite villain....

Recommended Events – Coming Soon

I just wanted to loop you about a few events I’m really excited about. First, my friends, Larry Brooks and Jennifer Blanchard, are running a 4-day novel development retreat in Portland, Oregon on April 3-7. The event is called Your Story On Steroids, and I believe...

How to Find Your Writing Voice (Without a Single Keystroke)

Some writers aren’t famous for what they write about, but how their writing voices sing on the page. Their cadence elevates them beyond countless wordsmiths vying for attention. Chuck Palahniuk, Anne Rice, and Kurt Vonnegut are a few strong voices that come to mind....

How to Create Characters Before They Live on the Page

This article was originally published as a guest post at my friend Sue Coletta's blog. (Definitely check out her solid debut novel, Marred!) I despise other people’s hands in my mouth. Yet I’ve permitted countless fingers to pry open my jaws over the years. I’ve even...

How FREE is Poisoning the Internet & Killing the Creatives

If you believe in making money and thriving as a creative like I do, then you need to read this raw and real post by the We Are Not Alone (W.A.N.A.) MAMA writer Kristen Lamb... A Culture Addicted to FREE—How FREE is Poisoning the Internet & Killing the...

R.I.P. Story & Craft, but Introducing…

Wait! Please stay subscribed because I'm not shutting down my blog! I'm just switching my domain from StoryandCraft.net to DavidVillalva.com along with updating my email address and logo. Here's the new logo in case you're curious what it looks like:   Of course, I'm...

Are You Guilty of Hoarding This Valuable Thing?

I married a bone collector. This revelation came to light several months ago when I went looking for a key, opened a drawer and discovered a pile of teeth. It turns out my wife’s been stashing all the pearly whites our kids have lost. Yep, I’m in love with an...

This Is the Worst Writing Mistake I’ve Made That You Must Avoid

I just trunked another draft. Specifically, this was the third draft of my current novel. I loved its first chapter but even it needed to go. A couple friends recently asked if I’m too much of a perfectionist? They asked if I’m judging my writing too harshly? Even my...

The 1st Chapter from My Trunked Draft

I just trunked another 70,000+ words. Those 70K+ words represented the third draft of my current WiP tentatively titled, The Temporal Photographer. Of course, there are reasons and I'll publish them in greater detail in a couple days. Just know for now that it was...

Case Study: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl stays true to the Storytelling Blueprint. See below for a plot structure breakdown... Part 1 1%-26%  -  Status Quo a.k.a. Setup Amy's disappeared & Nick's looked at as a suspect while the characters/setting of N. Carthage, MO are...

Case Study: Killing Floor by Lee Child

Part 1 1%-26%  -  Status Quo a.k.a. Setup Reacher wants to leave Margrave, GA but must prove his innocence in a homicide investigation Part 2 27%-48%  -  Reactivity a.k.a. Caution Reacher follows clues his brother left behind, discovers key info & new deaths in...

WARNING: Do Not Trust Your Wife with THIS Information

Do you like being surprised? How about surprising others? I had a big surprise planned this past week but someone spoiled it, and I’m going to share how I (mis)handled it… It all started in August when after nearly twenty years of emotional rehabilitation toward...

The Unspoken Pinch Point: Your Climax

I guest posted for Larry Brooks at Storyfix a couple months ago but never mentioned it here at the site. I figured I’d better do that now. So check out this link to read my take on how your Climax serves as a 3rd Pinch Point:...

Recommendations: Cat Coloring Book, Novels & Helpful Interviews

I just want to share some positive, fun stuff that a few friends are doing out there. Please take a quick look below and check out what's up! DO YOUR TOYS COME ALIVE AT NIGHT? My friend Pamela Hodges just released her new cat coloring book. I already purchased a...

Be Thankful (Even If You’re a Robot)

I earned a speeding ticket, went home, and wept. The ticket and tears were unrelated. It was heartbreak that spawned my waterworks. The day was February 19, 2014, and it went down like this… I dropped off my kids at school and started the drive home. Within three...

The Simple Secret to Getting Readers Engaged on Page One

My pants malfunctioned in the bathroom. I blame Kenneth Cole, not user error. It was two months ago when my zipper misfired inside the men’s restroom, minutes before meeting with a new client. I flushed, began to zip, and the zipper’s slider body derailed from one...

I SURVIVED the Tribe Conference of 2015

I seek the least amount of human contact possible. But a week ago, I rebelled against my self-diagnosed case of agoraphobia to attend a writers' conference. This article shall serve as my survival tale of the Tribe Conference of 2015. FIRST CONTACT I landed in...

Is the World Plotting Against You?

Hair was never a good look for me. Photographic evidence recently surfaced when I showed my kids a high school yearbook image. My daughter giggled as my son proclaimed, “Maybe you do look better bald.” While that may be true, I still went into shock when I began...

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