Tag Archives: perspective

3 Tips on Writing the Love Interest

Happy Valentine’s Day, Writer Bees and Bugs!

Love is in the air, even in fiction. No matter the genre, a love interest can add complexity and conflict to any story. If your MC is feeling the love, then check out these helpful tips on creating a character’s sweetheart.

Experiment with Chemistry

Love at first sight doesn’t make for an interesting story. Maybe attraction at first sight, sure. For the most part, feelings must develop gradually, not instantly. No matter what stage in the relationship, take the time to build up and explore that chemistry. A great lover could become an even greater foil for another character.

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Also, keep in mind the kind of relationships your characters would pursue. What’s their sexual preference? Are they interested in one night stands and flings? Or are they looking for a serious relationship? OR are they even looking for love in the first place? These factors will dictate how their romantic relationship lives and breathes over the course of the story.

Flaws, Glorious Flaws

Look, how many hot billionaires with six packs are there in the world? Seriously? Don’t create a character that is the ideal partner. Give them flaws. Real flaws. Consider physical and/or personality quirks. Are they short and stubborn? Are they pessimistic with a crooked nose? Be creative but be careful making a completely unlikeable character. Find that balance.

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A romantic interest shouldn’t just be a cookie cutter person. They must be able to stand on their own, as a complete character. Their entire world cannot revolve around another person. Whether the love interest is a main character or a side character, at the end of the day, readers want complex, relatable characters.

The Big Bad Conflict

No romance is perfect. Every couple has their struggles. With an internal or external battle, conflict is needed so things aren’t so lovey-dovey. Maybe one is afraid of commitment? Or are outside forces (society, race, war etc.) are straining their bond? Give the couple obstacles that they can (or cannot) overcome together.

Try tying the their conflict to the overall plot line, that way, the relationship won’t seem forced or out of place. Set the stakes high to ensure the problem is meaningful enough to the characters. Like a problem bigger than leaving the toilet seat up.

Bottom line, love isn’t always rainbows and butterflies, and that’s a good thing. Embrace those imperfections and write a real romance.


How do you guys write love interests? Any tips? Talk to me in the comments. And Happy Valentine’s day everybody!

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

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Prompt of the Week: Alone Time

How does your main character pass the time when they are alone?


It’s one thing to see how a character interacts with others, in public. It’s another to see what a character does when they are bythemselves, when no one else is around.

Write your response in the comments below, best entry gets a shout out next week!

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

3 Tips on Creating Likeable Antagonists

Mayday! Mayday!

You’re writing a story, minding your own business, when suddenly, a character you’re creating is taking a nose dive right into unlikable jerk territory. Let’s try to save your character from being total terror.

Whether they be hot tempered, or rude, or just have a nasty attitude,  you have created a character who is nothing but bad qualities. An unpleasant fellow in every regard. Yes, there are antagonists and villains and personified rain clouds, however, is that all they are? Just… the bad guy?

Here are some tips for creating a character we love to hate (and not hate to hate).

Changing Point of View

If your story involves multiple narratives, consider having your jerk character try on the narrator hat for a bit. How do they see the world? Are they really as nasty as they seem? What are their home lives like? Is there a reason for their misbehavior? Take a walk in their shoes. By doing this, it can give the reader insight to that character’s backstory and perspective.

Create Obstacles

Let there a be a struggle that shows another side of their character. The reader will gain a level of empathy for this character if they see them face some kind of hardship. Maybe the character learns from their past mistakes? Or feels guilt about something? Or has to face a real, serious conflict, either internal or external. Give the character a hill to climb over.

Give Them a Redeemable Trait

Anything. There has to be something good. No matter how horrible and cruel someone is, there must be some redeemable quality. Are they charming? Quick witted? Hard working? Show some level of respect or affection towards another? Like animals? (Who doesn’t like puppies?) You catch my drift. Any sort of positive trait to balance out the not so positive traits.


Don’t just have a character who is only recognized by the reader as being a terrible person. Real characters, like real people, need a balance in order to be complex.

Hope this helps some writer out there. In the comments, let me know who your favorite bad guy character you love to hate.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky.

5 Types of Narrators in Story Writing – Breaking Down the Basics

Hello Writer Bugs!

Today, we are going back to basics in story writing. What point of view is best for your WIP? Let’s break down the different kinds of narrators in a story.

(Psst! Don’t forget to check out that Patreon page! Keep this party going! )

First Person Narrator

Pronouns: I, my, me.

Example: The Narrator from Moby Dick. ” Call me Ishmael.”

First Person is a very personal perspective. The reader has a front row seat to this character’s feelings, thoughts and experience in the world. This can be either a main character or a distant observer. By using the first person narrative, it puts a limit to what the narrator, and the reader, knows and doesn’t know. This kind of narrator cannot know

Second Person Narrator

Pronouns: You, Your.

A Second Person Narrator talks directly to the audience, enveloping the reader into the story itself. Think of it like playing a choose your own adventure game, where the reader is a character. “You do this, you see that.” This one is quite rare in fiction; It’s more for technical writing. It’s difficult to perfect, but not impossible, so don’t be discouraged to experiment with this style.

Example: If I’m remembering correctly, Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern has some chapters using second person that are utterly enchanting.

Third Person Narrator (Limited)

Pronouns: He, she, they.

Another popular option that gives the writer more freedom to move around, follow multiple characters and explore multiple rooms of the house, so to speak. Usually, the third person narrator isn’t an actual character at all. It’s a more objective viewpoint, which can lead to a lack of connection with the reader. The audience is privy to more information about the plot, information the main characters may not even be aware of, but not the characters personal thoughts and feelings.

Omniscient Narrator

Usually third person. Uses ‘he, she, they’ pronouns.

With this one, the narrator knows everything, from feelings to inner thoughts. Imagine an all knowing, all seeing God-like being looking down at the world and relaying the story to the reader. Some can argue that it’s the author themselves telling the story. I’ll let you be the judge.

Unreliable Narrator

Usually first person, usually undependable.

Some narrators just can’t be trusted, can they? The viewpoint of this narrator is very biased, clouded by their own, possibly flawed judgement. Other characters in the story may not be described accurately because of the narrator’s own perception. Certain events can be skewed. Even the narrator himself could be not what he appears to be

Example: Check out the narrator from The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie. He may know more about the murder than he is letting on. Wink wink.

Choose Your Narrator Wisely

Really take the time to think about whom the narrator will be and how well they can tell your/their story. It’s important for the reader to really connect and be engaged with the character or viewpoint chosen. Think of it like this, the narrator is the reader’s vehicle as they ride the rollercoaster that is your story. That makes sense right?

If you are struggling to decide which narrative you want to use, try multiple styles. No harm in experimenting. It’s like reading an essay for school out loud before handing it in. You’ll know what fits your story best when you read it.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

When Your Fictional Character Gives You Life Advice

You know,

NaNoWriMo didn’t go too well for me,

I mean, I didn’t reach the 50k, but it’s fine, really.

And working on a novel can be difficult.

Why can’t writing be like a literary waterfall of brilliance?

Maybe I’m just being impatient.

Not like I can just wiggle my nose and boom! There’s my book.

“The pieces will fall into place when they are meant to.” Actual quote from my fictional detective, Private Detective H.B Cooper.

I invented you, you’re not supposed to give me life advice.

“As If I care for such trivial commentary.” – Another quote from my fictional detective.


So sorry for no post this week. I was super busy and super sick. Life just wants to hit me in the face with a baseball bat. With the holidays right around the corner, my posts may become a bit sparse. But do not fret, we will be back to our regularly scheduled program soon, I promise!


Side note: What advice would your fictional characters give you? Write it in the comments. I’d love to hear from you guys.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

Starting Prep for NaNoWriMo: Learning from Past Mistakes

So, I’m starting my NaNoWriMo prep a bit differently than most.

Last year, I participated in National Novel Writing Month, the challenge for writers to write 50,000 words in one month. And last year, I failed that challenge. Don’t cry for me, Argentina. Despite not reaching my goal, I still learned a lot about myself as a writer. That experience lit a fire under me, and I’m happy I tried NaNoWriMo. With November right around the corner, I’m ready to try again.

I’m incredibly critical of myself. And an incurable perfectionist. In previous blog posts, I made notes for improvement on my writing during November. Today, I’m tackling the mistakes I made during my last NaNoWriMo run head on. Here are, what I consider to be, my weak points, and my plans for improvement. (Cue the demise of my self-esteem)

Stop Trying to be Perfect

Remember when I said I am an incurable perfectionist? I wasn’t kidding. Last NaNoWriMo, I feel like I did not let myself free write because one bad sentence was nagging at me. Or the ideal phrasing wasn’t immediately coming to mind. And then there’s that self-doubt that all writers have. “Everything you’re writing is trash. Everything you’re even thinking about writing is trash. You should just stop, stop forever and eat potato chips all day.” I mean, that’s what my voice of doubt sounds like. I just want my story to be perfect. But I know that no story is perfect, and I should get over that idea.

Solution: Accept that writing garbage is okay. That not every word out of my brain will be amazing. That at least half of those 50,000 words will probably be changed. Just to write without stopping myself because something doesn’t sound right. In the words of Hemingway “The first draft of anything is garbage”. Next month, I’ll fight the urge to edit and perfect until December.

Focus On One Scene At A Time

If you can’t tell already, my brain is easily distracted. I have a bad habit of jumping around from scene to scene, writing small bits here and there. Then, I find myself losing focus and becoming frazzled. When I try to write a bunch of bits for a bunch of different parts, I become overwhelmed and nothing gets done.

Plan of Attack: This one’s hard. I need to work on my focus. I need to push myself to concentrate on one scene at a time. I can’t write the whole novel all at once. My best bet is to tackle certain sections or scenes during November.

Write More Descriptions

Well, writing descriptions wasn’t, and maybe still isn’t, my strongest suit as a writer.  Actually, I recently wrote a post centered around tips for writing setting descriptions. I talked about how I struggle with writing about the setting. Usually, dialogue comes first to me when I’m writing. But a forest is just a forest right? Wrong.

Plan of Attack: Let’s just say, I’m working on it. I’m more mindful of how the people and the places in my stories look. My goal is to paint a vivid, realistic picture for the reader. Trying my best to tap into sensory details of settings and also the unique physical features of my characters.

Lost Connection

I’ll be honest, there were moments I didn’t feel connected to my characters nor to the time period. To quote myself from the previous year “It was like we were once roommates, living together and then, they became the neighbors down the street. An unexplained distance came between me and this story idea.” Think about it, I’m a modern-day lady writing in the perspective of a young man living in the roaring 20’s. How can I possible fit into those shoes?

Solution: Well, for starters, this year, the big bang happened. By completely changing the plot, I feel much more confident in my story idea. As for the characters, I’m gonna try a couple of things this October. Really flush some characters out and get to know them inside and out. I want to make sure that they’re 3-dimensional characters. As for the setting, research is important. I’ve already collected some resources to help me understand that time period. The goal is to be as accurate as possible.


What would you say was your weak point from last NaNoWriMo? And what are you doing to overcome it and improve for this year? Let me know in the comments, lovelies.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

 

The Writer’s Life Tag

Found this awesome tag at mylifewithbooks

Thought I’d give it a shot.

1. What do you eat or drink while writing?

This may sound weird, but dry cereal with no milk (Dairy allergy). or greasy potato chips. Yum. Roasted chickpeas are delicious too. I’m also getting into those KIND granola bars. Drink wise, I usually stick with water. Maybe a Snapple. Maybe some mango juice, to lift my spirits. Sometimes you need to eat your stress/feelings when writing.

2. What do you listen to while writing?

I’ll dance in my chair to soundtracks of Broadway shows, Newsies soundtrack specifically. Love Newsies, that music gets my energy up. I enjoy acoustic guitar and ukulele, easy breezy kind of music. I have played Jack Johnson’s “Banana Pancakes” on repeat many, many times.

3. What is your biggest writing distraction?

Somehow, I always end up with like 10-15 tabs open when I write. And I’ve definitely fallen down those YouTube rabbit holes. But yeah, too many opens tabs. Also, having a bunch of writing assignments that take me away from my personal writing.

4. What’s the worst thing that’s ever happened to you while writing?

Haven’t we all had that moment when a word doc doesn’t save? Or the battery on your laptop runs out? Or you forgot your flash drive? Yeah, I’ve had those moments. I’ve bawled and had panic attacks during those moments. Not fun.

5. What’s the best thing that ever happened to you while writing?

That wonderful burst of inspiration, when my fingers are typing fast and loud on the keyboard. Words come out in a flood. Like I caught lightning in a bottle. And for those of you that have been following this blog for awhile, you’ll know that I recently made a huge change to my plot idea that I’ve been working on. That experience of starting over has been amazing and one of the best things I have done as a writer.

6. Who do you communicate with or not communicate with while writing?

I mean, I don’t talk to anyone while I write. In the dark of the night, It’s just me at my desk. But, if I need to brainstorm, or just work out an idea out loud, I’ll talk to my boyfriend. He’s not a writer, and that can be a benefit sometimes. He sees things through a reader’s lens, not a writer’s lens and he really does help untangle my thoughts.

7. What is your secret to success and your biggest writing flaw?

I don’t know if I’d call it a secret to success. Whatever I write, I try to challenge stereotypes and cliches. I’m always pushing myself to do things differently. I just try to be honest and create 3 dimensional characters and stories that feel real.

My biggest flaw? Well, I am struggling to be consistent. I want to write fiction everyday, but sometimes it’s difficult. Missing a day of fiction writing, turns into a week of no writing very quickly. And then my motivation is low and I don’t know where to start or how to get the ball rolling. Does that make sense? Finding the time and getting motivated are my biggest flaws, and I’m working on that.

8. What inspires you? Or what makes you productive?

Whenever I read, I feel inspired. I try and learn from other writers. I consider what captures my attention and try to apply that into my own writing, so I can become a better writer. I have a tough time being productive with my writing. Being a freelance writer, I’m writing for everyone else but not for myself. I work on my story as best I can. I just know I want to write a novel one day. My dream, for the longest time, has been to have a book on a shelf with my name on it. To write the story that hooks a reader. That’s what keeps me going.

9. What is one thing you do or other writers do that’s annoying?

When writers say dumb stuff like “omg no one understands my art!” or “my story is amazing, you don’t know anything!” Seriously? I know about being protective of your work, but really, take it easy, pal.

10. Are you willing to share something you’ve written?

I have shared some of my old, junk drawer, stories on this blog before. Just some snippets of stories and scenes. I had a four part flash fiction series called The Wizard and His Lady   I’m just making use of rejected pieces and drafts from fiction class. There are a couple other short stories on my blog. One scene I posted actually has the characters from my current fiction project. They’re probably not that great, but a writer has to start somewhere, which is why I share some of my work.

((And be on the look out for a new flash fiction series on Lady Jabberwocky, coming soon!))


Hope you guys liked this tag. If there is another tag you think I should do, let me know! Have an awesome day, lovelies.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

Words for Writers Wednesday #2: Write What You Don’t Know

Write what you know,

So they say.

What happens when you have to write what you don’t know?

You research, and you learn, and you grow and you overcome the challenge.

So that the things you don’t know become the things you do know.

You know?


Sometimes, when you have to write about something you aren’t familiar with, there is a bit of trepidation that comes with that. Whether you are writing fiction or an essay, don’t be scared about writing a topic you are unfamiliar with. Don’t steer away from it, challenge yourself. Just remember, you are smarter than you think you are.

For me, I don’t know what it’s like to be a person from the 1920s, but I research and I try to be as accurate as possible when I’m writing fiction, even if I run into subjects that aren’t up my alley. I didn’t know much about writing about comics, but look at my job now, writing weekly comic book reviews. Never be intimidated to write about the things you are not an expert in.

Also, shout out to everyone who caught my Newsies reference.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

 

Changing the Murder in a Murder Mystery: The Beauty of Starting Over

Okay.

We need to talk.

A real talk about being a writer.

Sometimes, you just need to start over.

Which is what I’ve decided to do. Well, for the most part.

I’m starting my story over.

Let Me Explain

For the past couple of months, I’ve been trying to write a novel. Trying being the key word. It’s a mystery story about a Detective and his assistant, set in the 1920s.

These characters and setting have been on my mind for years. Back in fiction writing class, I offered my short story, featuring the detective and the 20s, to be critiqued by my fellow classmates. Although my work was much different than my peers, I received many positive comments. I’m not bragging that my writing is genius, but that positivity gave me encouragement to keep at it.

When I graduated, I was on my own, to write what I please. To be the author I always dreamed I’d become. Frankly, I struggled. With this newfound freedom came fear, fear of the unknown. What kind of story do I write? What genre? Then, I remembered my mystery story from class. I enjoyed writing detective fiction. And I thought to myself, why not just expand the 10 page story I wrote into a novel? Seemed plausible, at the time.

Honestly, I was having a tough time. Every time I tried to write something, it was like walking through quicksand. This was different than ordinary writer’s block. I felt stuck. The more I tried to work on it, the more tangled I felt.

I’ll admit, I grew depressed. I was a writer not writing. I lost all motivation. Writing just lost it’s magic. For months, I had this gut feeling that huge parts of the plot needed to changed in order to create an even greater story. Even though I’m afraid of change, I have to rework the entire plot line, for it’s own good.

What Exactly is Changing

So, here’s what’s happening. Major construction and reconstruction.

I’m my opinion, I have great characters. I think, if I do them justice, they can be really special fictional characters. It’s not the characters that need changing, it’s the plot itself. The pieces were playing the wrong game. Does that make sense?

What I want to change, what I NEED to change, is the center of the plot itself. The murder in the murder mystery. The case connecting all these characters together, the case my detective would solve, had to be revamped. Kicked up a notch, I supposed you could say.

Originally, my detective story was centered around an actress who had been shot with a not so fake gun while on stage. Then, I recognized that the murder in my murder mystery was cliche. I didn’t realize how much of a trope my idea was. While having a trope or a cliches in a story is fine, I didn’t want to write something that’s been done a bunch of times. Fiction shouldn’t be predictable.

Why I’m Sharing My Setback

While writing is an art, it isn’t always roses. I want to share my ups and downs, as a writer, with full honesty. That’s what the Lady Jabberwocky blog is about. If my experience as a writer has an impact on another writer’s life, then maybe sharing my set back will be worth it.

I’m not starting from scratch completely. Some scenes from the original story line can be salvaged and used in the new story line. Characters, for the most part, will remain the same. Sometimes, you need to take a step back and rework elements of a story in order to become better.

I’m happy. And excited to create a story again. A new story. Hopefully, get those creative juices going again. Challenging stereotypes and cliches and tropes always made me write better. It’s what got me writing in the first place.

I’m erasing the drawing board and starting again, and that’s okay.

Never feel discouraged just because of a step backwards. Writing is a process. It’s also a journey and a real adventure. You will eventually arrive at your destination, even if you took a few detours along the way.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky