• Archives,  writing

    What is a character?

    Orson Scott Card wrote in Characters & Viewpoint that characters are people. Human beings. Whole and alive, believable, and worth caring about. Like I said last week, storytelling is not just about narrating a string of events without a purpose. It’s about what happens, to whom, the struggle to achieve a goal, and a final change at the end. Characters are our “to whom”. And even if your protagonist is not initially a person nor alive (they can be a city, an animal, a ghost), you make them look human in your writing. You want to make them living, whole, believable, and worth caring about. The character is the soul…

  • Archives,  writing

    What is a story?

    You decided to be a writer. You want to write the stories in your head, or the stories you want to read. You call yourself a storyteller. But do you know what a story is? In How to Write a Damn Good Novel, James N. Frey defines story as a “narrative of consequential events involving worthy human characters who change as a result of those events.” Lisa Cron brings a similar definition in Story Genius. “In a nutshell: A story is about how the things that happen affect someone in pursuit of a difficult goal, and how that person changes internally as a result.” If you want a simpler definition,…