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Category: All Writing Tips

From character development to forging a plot, find all the writing tips and advice you need right here! The Character Comma helps you deepen your novel and create compelling story lines that keep readers hooked cover to cover. It all starts with reading up on writing tips and seeing which ones best apply to your novel.

Swoons and Wounds: Shaping your character’s internal motivations

Swoons and Wounds: Shaping your character’s internal motivations

All characters need a goal. That much is obvious, and something most writers already know all about. Without some kind of character motivation, there’s not much left to drive the plot forward. But have you also given your characters dreams? Hopes and fantasies that they think about in daydreams? In a perfect world, how would this character be living? One of my writing teachers called these “swoons.” Swoons: Your character’s dreams and fantasies. When they space off, this is what…

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6 Tips to Starting your First Chapter

6 Tips to Starting your First Chapter

That blank page sure is intimidating. And the blinking cursor only makes it worse! If starting your novel is to a point where it’s inhibiting your entire ability to write, then I say skip it. Try to start somewhere else—somewhere that excites you! That said, you’re going to have to write the first chapter at some point. And since this is the chapter that will either draw your reader into the story or scare them away forever, you need to…

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How Peeling an Orange can Reveal More about your Character

How Peeling an Orange can Reveal More about your Character

I have this crazy theory that you can learn about someone based on how they peel an orange. I think I mentioned this to a friend, and he just looked at me weird. But I digress. Let me explain my madness. Everyone has a unique technique when it comes to orange-peeling. Previously mentioned friend bites into an orange to break through the rind. The thought of this makes me cringe. The taste of orange peels makes me cringe. I’ll use…

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First Impressions: The Secret to a Great Character Introduction

First Impressions: The Secret to a Great Character Introduction

It has come to my attention that not everyone understands the absolute necessity of a great first introduction for your characters?! Seriously, when you introduce a character in your story, a first impression is everything. A good intro will make a character easier to remember AND solidify whatever character arc they end up progressing through during the story. Basically, you can get a lot of work done in just this one scene, so don’t waste it! The trick? The key to a…

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Writing Dialogue: Saying What You Mean (Not)

Writing Dialogue: Saying What You Mean (Not)

We don’t always speak our minds. Sometimes we lie. Sometimes we shape our words to protect ourselves or keep our distance. It’s as simple as you talking to your crush, but they don’t know they’re your crush and you’re too nervous to say something. You don’t usually admit “I like you” when you see them. You’ll usually beat around the bush like “You’re funny” or if you’re feeling brave, “I like spending time with you.” Characters are like this too….

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5 Core Features that make up a Dynamic Character

5 Core Features that make up a Dynamic Character

When you encounter a great character, you can usually just feel it in the way they act and behave. They’re realistic and complex and full of personality. They’re their own person, with their own distinct needs and wants and fears and all the things the rest of us humans have to deal with. It’s hard to narrow down a well-written character to a list, but in general there are some things you should include when writing your own characters. Take your time….

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Welcome to the New CC!

Welcome to the New CC!

After blogging through Tumblr for so long, it’s exciting to finally announce this stand-alone website! This has been a dream of mine for several months now, and although there was a bit of a learning curve for setting up a website, I’m extremely pleased with how everything is shaping up. But why a new blog? Why expand beyond Tumblr? What can this new CC do for YOU? Cleaner, more professional content. Of course I put a lot of effort into writing…

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36 Core Values for Building Complex Characters

36 Core Values for Building Complex Characters

Your character’s core values shape their decision-making throughout your novel. They’re the character’s own moral compass, and each character’s core values are specific to them. These are the passions in our hearts–what inspires to fight and argue and never give up. When we follow our core values, we feel peace and rightness.When we stray from them, it’s what keeps us up at night or makes our stomachs churn. That said, it makes sense that we can apply Core Values to…

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