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’.

How to Create a Remarkable Villain (Beyond the Clichés!)

Your villain plays the most important role in your story. Yep, more important than your hero. That means you must go beyond the cliches when developing your villain, because generic platitudes such as maniacal laughter, minions and monologues are standard issue. But...

Why Your Story Choices Come with High Stakes

My first story coach offered me a refund. Full or partial. Whatever I needed to feel whole. Why? My eligibility was explained in an email. Here are a few quotes: “I couldn't tell you the main storyline.” “I can't tell you, with confidence, what anybody in this story...

Your Protagonist Isn’t Your Story’s Most Important Character

I broke up with my girlfriend on her birthday. (Sorry Heather.) It happened in Jr. High School… All our friends were at her house for a pool party.  While everyone swam, I sat alone on the patio looking at her birthday gift. Because taped to the wrapped perfume I...

How to Navigate an Episode of Writer’s Block

This article was originally published as a guest post at JenniferBlanchard.net. I look like a rabid beast when I dance. My legs twitch. Elbows fly. Hips don’t lie. What’s crazy is that I actually feel the music. Unfortunately, my feeling translates into body movement...

REVEALED: Open Letter from Your Antagonist

To whom it should concern: I'm the devil you need but don't want to exist. Don’t dare challenge that. Why else would you write an entire story trying to stop me? Hell, I’m lucky if I survive your story. Yet my purpose here is not to beg for salvation. I'm writing...

Confession: I’m No Hero

I’m going to tell you something I never shared with my wife. It’s not the kind of thing you disclose on a first date. Or when you propose. Definitely not your wedding night. Confessing after eleven years of marriage through your new website is a good time. Yep, that...

2001: A PLACE Odyssey

I rejoiced the first time story structure exposed itself. Easy there. The year was 2001. The place was San Diego, California. The mood was one of hope and dreams. I sat in my apartment having just finished Syd Field’s Screenplay. I wanted to write my first big story,...

The Greatest Ingredient in Every Story

The epiphany struck in the bathroom. I stood in front of the mirror and proclaimed, “I’m going to write novels." During that first week of writing, I told myself, “This is what I do. I’m never going to stop.” So I wrote anything and everything at any time. I wrote for...

Welcome to Story & Craft

At some point, you probably read a novel and thought, “I can do this. Actually, I can do this better.” So you came up with an idea that no one wrote about yet. That idea swelled to the point your head would explode if it wasn’t unleashed. And you started writing your...

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