Archive for August 8th, 2009

Aug 08 2009

I wish I had come up with this myself…

I provide advice about how to write novels, comic books and graphic novels. Most of my content applies to fiction-writing in general, but I also provide articles specifically about superhero stories.

In Green Lantern #9, Batman gets a GL ring.

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62 responses so far

Aug 08 2009

SVT’s Review Forum

Published by under Review Forums

What am I trying to write?

I’m trying to write a superhero novel about a guy and a girl, I’m uncertain about the age (it happens), who battle some kind of huge pseudo-army of people. Whether it be a criminal organization or a mystical race of vampires, I am uncertain (there goes that word again).

Who is in my target audience?

Teenagers, possibly college students. Of the older, more mature sort. I don’t intend on making this book full of rainbows and butterflies. Some comparable works would include Animorphs, Maximum Ride, Kung Fu Panda, Fantastic Four, Spiderman, and The Wizard of Oz (I’ll explain later).

How thick is my skin?

If you don’t call my work terrible or anything of the like, we’ll be fine.

11 responses so far

Aug 08 2009

Webmasters, don’t pull rank on your readers!

Here are a few tips about how to treat commenters and reviewers respectfully.

1.  It’s rarely helpful to highlight the host’s comments in a different color. First, it usually looks annoying, particularly if your comments are long.  Second, most of the people that read the comments on your website will know who you are, particularly if you comment frequently.  Third, shouldn’t your writing stand out on its own merits?  By virtue of your experience and effort, you are probably among the most competent and best-written people on your site.  (Ahem– if your guests were more competent than you, they would move on).  When a host highlights his comments, it may feel like he’s insecure about the quality of his writing.

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Aug 08 2009

Scaling Your Story: How Epic is Too Epic?

How epic is your story?

  1. The hero has to overcome a problem that isn’t life-and-death (like most romance).
  2. The hero has to save himself or another character from serious danger (like most action).
  3. The hero has to save a city (like most superhero stories).
  4. The hero has to save a nation or species (like most epic fantasy and national security thrillers).
  5. The hero has to save the world(s).  (This is pretty rare outside of epic sci-fi).

Here are some suggestions about how to handle the scope of your story.

1.  It’s rarely a problem when a story evolves from #1 to #2. For example, it would be pretty easy to write a story where a journalist covers a story that becomes ludicrously dangerous.  First, the change in epicness is fairly slight.

Second, the author has a variety of ways to prepare the reader.  For example, you can foreshadow the danger.  Or you can gradually ratchet up the violence– first a witness dies under mysterious circumstances, then the journalist gets death threats, then his brakes suddenly stop working on the freeway, etc.  Preparing the reader is important because otherwise the reader might be disoriented when you change the stakes.  If your readers have no reason to suspect that the journalist is in danger, they may be confused rather than thrilled when a mysterious man suddenly draws a gun on him.

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14 responses so far