You need a good straight man (or woman) to bring your comedic, heroic, or otherwise unconventional characters into sharper focus.

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Two of the classic story shapes are "the fall" or "the rise." In these story arcs, the main character climbs to a peak of happiness, falls from one, or does a round-trip for maximum emotional impact.

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In almost every story, there is a pill that makes something exciting happen. Whether it brings love, stardom, happiness, or calamity in your book is up to you.

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Sometimes what your book needs is an elephant or two in the room. That's what a mokita is, and while we don’t want these elephants in our real lives, they can be powerful agents in your storytelling.

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Creating a believable character for your story begins with an initial idea, but the process of developing her into a complex, real personality will require thought and research.

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In your attempt to create characters your readers crave, these five steps can help you get to know and understand your players well enough to write living, breathing three-dimensional characters on the page.

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For me, it’s way too intimidating to just start crafting a book with the first word of the first sentence, so I've learned how to release the valve to set my ideas and words free. Here are five ways I start writing a book to warm up, ease into it, and do some crucial background work so my story will truly come to life.

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