Making A Character Three-dimensional 

This can be one of the most difficult to pull off, and even sometimes I can barely pull it off. Making three dimensional characters is a must in almost any book, if you ask me. But it is also the headache for many writers, even me to an extent. 

The first thing which I would say would help make your characters three-dimensional is giving them a flaw. Or a number of them. Some small, some big. And enough to make them believable to a reader. Having one flaw can be quite boring, but a few where they would need to rely on others is more suitable instead. And one might just lead to their downfall. 

Another is develop details, sometimes certain quirks or details help to make a character have a little more depth. Even more so when why did they eventually develop such a habit, it can be quite fun to invent the various back stories constructed in such a way to make them so. 

Their quirks and habits, must reflect their mindset. Or at least give a nudge that there is a lot more than what meets the eye, or even any disabilities they might have. Not shove it into the reader’s face or simply mention it but also show it in some ways that they are as such. 

And most importantly, is to have another side to them. Rather than the usual characters personality, show a little more to them. It can make the book a little funnier, a little darker, a little more deep. Also, it must be a smooth transition or hinted from early on that they might have such a side or personality. Only that it is hidden from them. 

Most importantly, is to always be honest with the character you have and their motivations, their goals and their morality. Show what their mind is thinking, show what kind of actions they would take. And also, let their actions and words define them, you can justify it from their point of view but they should never change or become a gentler version of what they should have been. 

It is also to portray them in their true colours if they are main characters. Otherwise, they wouldn’t even sound like themselves anymore, just hypocrites if done unintentionally can be rather off putting. 

So, do you have any other ways to make a character three-dimensional? Feel free to leave it below, it is always welcome. 


Improving Your Craft

To others that might include a lot of steps. But to me, I guess the main idea is to write, write and write. You probably wouldn’t know what sounds good on your first novel, but after countless tries, your work would sound better albeit still not perfect. 

But the most basic thing you have to do first is to write, write a first draft that is horrible, write a short story, write anything that doesn’t sounds right. Experiment. Just write basically. You won’t get it right the first time, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t later on. 

But like I said, you have to write. There is no simple way to go over it. Trust me, I thought that by reading writing tips my work will be a lot better than others. That my work would be a notch higher. Unfortunately, never worked out. You will only learn if you constantly write, and keep writing. 

And it’s simpler than having to attend workshops, courses on writing, which I have never even stepped foot into one. Although I used the internet for advice and tips, but at the end of the day it drill doesn’t help much with the exception of writing. 

If you want to say that failure doesn’t sound right to you, let me tell you that in this, you probably have to expect a lot of failures and disappointment. It’s in the life of a writer, when you get a critique that has a list long of suggestions where you can improve, trust me, it will happen and no work is immune to it, there isn’t an objective book in writing, only subjective. And you probably need to have something to show them, you can talk all you want about the book but if it doesn’t exist because you haven’t started writing then it is quite a waste. 

So, what are you waiting for? Just pick up the pen, as let’s face it, there is no perfect time to write a book, it’s either we do it now or we will never get around to it. 


Making A Story Original

A story can be as clichéd or as original as you want to be. There always will be borrowed elements from elsewhere, but to me it is bringing something new to these elements and frankly speaking what you think of them. 

I mean, we write books which are meant to be subjective. There is no one size fits all in this approach, and nothing will be able to satisfy all. You have to accept that there will be people who hate your novel and people who also will love it to pieces. Thus the only important thing is to always bring in how you feel about the world into your book it is always present even if it is reduced to nothing more than subtlety within your own book. And to never shortchange your readers. 

As such, to be original is to just bring a new twist to it. To show things in a different light. And also, what you think makes up the particular genre you are writing in. And most importantly, whose story you are telling. 

No work is fully original, we all borrow a little here and there but what is original is how we say things, it is also how we write them and present our ideas and thoughts through novels. 

As such, to be original to me is to really enjoy what you are writing. If you put your heart into it, it will feel original rather than a novel who basically had all the elements in a checklist. 

Also, all writers would present it differently. Their works would all have something inherently different, if not then it’s basically plagiarising, to be able to have some original ideas mean some novelty and something different from other books itself. All books published I do have to admit has this, even if the execution doesn’t really make any like it. 

For me, this is what I think is necessary to being original. What do you think about this topic? What else could make your works a little more original? 


On Worldbuilding

To me, this is as important as making characters itself. How your world is structured would make your characters, it would show what kind of society they grew up in, the kind of beliefs they were raised in. And to me, it is important. 

Some writers treat this as a character itself, to me it is an interesting perspective to see. That the world is intricate and hard to define in one sentence, it basically sums up our world. Where there are so many things which are so simple yet so complex, there are completely different explanations for children and adults. Just like morality, Jo answer is completely right, and most of the time it comes in shades of grey. 

To me, history plays an integral part in shaping my world. It tells me that to make a believable world, I need to show the history having its own merits and faults, and how the world is flawed itself. If the world was perfect, it would be called an utopia rather than what it is. And writing utopian works; they are simply hard to pull off. How do you write a work of an utopian world, a dystopia would work far better. 

To me, it is also figuring out how the world would impact the characters and what sort of characters might come out of it. Especially in long sagas about fantasy, the world plays a large part in making characters who they are or what they believe. Such as whether it’s a patriarchal society or matriarchal society, whether both genders are treated equally, whether they respect power and authority. It all plays a part in making the characters. 

With the world set, possible back stories can be made with the context of the world itself, and hence making the character even more believable with the environment they have grew up with and the sort of life they had lived. As long as the world is developed enough to justify the personality of the character and also how it happens to them. 

To me, worldbuilding can also be a fascinating topic. I once did a note on nothing but earrings, but they were quite an important way to show their status in my book, as such the development was necessary to me. For me, worldbuilding is about as much as the important beliefs, traditions, more than miniscule details which might matter little. For me, focus on what is important in the world. And don’t be afraid to use the real world as an inspiration and helping you to figure out some details and also use objects as a way of symbolism. That to me, has always been one which I loved to use in my books if I could find an appropriate form to use it. 

Worldbuilding can be fun, and also sometimes just let yourself loose and surf the net. I always end up surprised what I end up searching, the history of the world is basically your best friend here. There are plenty of interesting facts about the world waiting to be discovered in fact. 

As for those who didn’t worldbuilding daunting, just stop trying to fill your notes with words and details that might matter little, more on what is important and vital to the story for it to feel realistic. And also, leave it alone until you feel as though you want to add something. Mine are still sparse till this day but I keep in mind on what I develop and write in the actual document itself.  


Creating Believable Characters

This applies to main characters mostly. I really hate characters which are always doing the right thing. They are simply not believable to me in the least. Whenever I read a book about such characters, most of the time I think they are stupid. 

There is always a fine line between having a moral code and forgiving and simply being a self harming idiot. And I absolutely despite villains who just change at the last moment, it never happens at all and please don’t tell me that he was possessed, it simply feels cheap. 

I really like realistic characters, and maybe it’s why I end up writing mostly anti-heroes, or even villains. Those that are realistic and sound in their decisions. Rather than being irrational and saving the world because of it. 

If a hero always manages to go through everything without ever growing at all, and not growing through any ordeal. Then, he is simply a flat character. He does not learn anything from his own adventures and simply is not a good hero. 

Or heroes whose view on the world never changes, even slightly. It doesn’t have to be as big as from good to evil. Perhaps a little more willing to sacrifice others for the greater good or just willing to accept that some are beyond saving. That’s a change. The saviour complex sometimes needs to stop really. 

And also, don’t try and link characters together by a prophecy. It’s old and it’s tried. For me, a far better and more interesting thing is to watch characters dig their own graves, and characters becoming their downfall through their own mistakes. I really like characters that are also driven whether by revenge, or any other means. They just need to have a goal, and not just a person that the reader slip into. 

They also must grow and change. Like earlier, it can be anything from personalities or moral ethnics, but I believe the goal should not change much at all. I strongly dislike characters who just change their goal unless they have achieved it or found a better goal. They should never just be solely forgetting the previous goal. Goals can make or a break a character, especially villains and protagonists. Their goal should always be opposite of each other to be interesting. 

Overall, I really think that believable characters are made of goals that may never change, constant growth at the end of the book and most importantly, having characters be driven through it rather than some prophecy. 

What do you think makes up a believable characters? Or is there anything I have left out which you think is important? Please leave it in the comments below. 


Making Time Out To Write 

If you have a busy schedule like I do, each day having so much in your plate yet still wanting to write, then you have come to the right post. Here is where I am going to share some of my secrets on how I manage to write every single day. 

#1 Keep A Schedule 

Keeping a schedule helps me a lot here as it arranges my time properly and leaves me with open spaces to write. And seriously, keep a schedule of your daily life if you want to write. It’s easier to keep in mind and set aside time if you have a schedule in mind and also ensures that I can keep up with my daily life. 

#2 Planning ahead of time 

If you think that it is hard for you to write all the time because of the blank page, consider this method. Plan things out maybe one chapter ahead of it, and jot down notes and ideas when it comes to you. This was the lifesaver which prevented me from hitting huge blocks most of the time and being unable to meet a deadline. 

It doesn’t need to be a lot of even detailed, it can be a couple of sentences just describing what happens in the next chapter. It can help you face the blank page because you know what must go on it. 

#3 Get rid of distractions 

If your the sort who tends to get distracted easily, just find ways to turn it off. If you have a hectic schedule get rid of the distractions as it can keep you from writing and wasting the time that you can turn to write. 

#4 Write when you are tired 

This works well for me especially is that when I’m tired I’m less likely to obsess over small details and just write without a care for the world. And I just write and write until I really start to fall asleep then call it a day, or write it close to your bedtime, trust me it works very often in helping you hit your word count. 

#5 Squeeze out as much time as you can 

Find time, just find it wherever you can. And squeeze it out to write. Even though I tend to look for long empty spaces to write but less than an hour also works very very well for me. And those small gaps are where I plan, and just keep in mind all the notes or just write the dialogue which is relatively short enough to write with a small amount of time. 

Overall, this are my tips on squeezing time out to write. If you have anymore leave them in the comments below, I do want to know what other methods there is to squeeze time out to write. 


The Benefits Of Planning 

Many authors don’t plan, and not saying they are wrong. But for me, planning works so well for a reason, it’s because it saves a me a lot of time since I already know where the story is heading. 

And planning can be as detailed as an outline, or as loose as just a couple of sentences jumbled together. But it is a plan, that tells the author what he needs to do next. Rather than waste time just wondering what the next chapter should be about, or facing the blank screen. It saves me a lot of time. 

This method is really for those who have little time to waste each day, or simply want to write faster. Planning helps me focus more, rather than think about raw creativity and the importance of writing the first draft as a vomit draft. 

You also won’t write yourself into a corner and have no way out, that happened to me before where I simply couldn’t write anything else because there was no way for me to write out of it. And it can be a stumbling block. And planning saves you since you identify such problems before you really have no idea where to go. 

It also helps you come closer to a better novel, and means less editing work and less revisions. As you don’t need to spend so much time on the plot or the research, since you are doing it as you go. Or having to add characters, add elements which would add to the story, or the worldbuilding because there was little details about it. And it most definitely helps to see where foreshadowing can be included in subtle ways. 

And also, it isn’t something that you have to completely stick to. If it doesn’t work at a certain point, you can disregard what you have planned before and just move it to the direction you are bringing it into. And I have done that, once I got to a certain point I discarded some plans because other ideas work far better. 

As such planning works for some but not really for all, I simply do it because it’s more efficient for me. Good writing comes to me once I know what to write about, and not just facing a blank page. And chances are, what you have written there would mostly stay rather than having plenty to be cut because it simply has no meaning in the story. 

But those without a plan might do so because it gives them excitement, it is quite exhilarating to have no idea where a story would head. However for me, I just choose because it is just frustrating to have no idea where to go next and having to set it aside because of that. 

But it is entirely up to you to decide whether to plan or to just write with no end in mind. 

What do think of planning? How far would you plan? Please leave your input below.