After spending years of your life writing a story, you don’t want it to be rejected in the first sixty seconds by an editor. Using pink paper for your novel manuscript submission or dressing like a chicken for your audition on America’s Got Talent both might get you attention, but it is not the attention you want.
How do you avoid the rejection pile and get published?
When you can’t think of what to write, step away from your computer, and doodle. Yes, step away, and doodle. You heard me correctly. (Said in a kind gentle way.) Now, grab a pencil and a piece of paper, and start to doodle your way out of writer’s block.
There are stories published in books, and stories that have never been published. There are stories that have been read by more people than live in Kansas* and there are stories that have been read only by you, the writer. Don’t compare yourself to others.
There are also stories that have never been written. Stories only you can tell.
Fiction or nonfiction, the stories you write are unique to your experiences and your creativity. But if you compare yourself to others, you might never write them.
There are several ways to reveal who your character is in a story: through how they dress, their posture, and through what they value. But the best way to determine who your character is is through their action.
Not sure what your character might do? Put them through the Starbucks Character Test.
When we read books, books with characters we love, we can learn how to write our own characters by studying what details the writers included. There are so many details about your characters you could include in a character description, but which ones do you need?
Let’s look at the advice Stephen King gives in his book On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft about good description and see if applies to Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games and Harry Potter in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.