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FFC #77 - Figuring out stakes

Posted August 18th, 2021 at 02:20 PM by The Grim Reaper's Friend
TGRF's Fan Fiction Chronicles - Entry #77

Iíve said elsewhere that I want to use this time to further study writing, specifically what I have left to work on.

One of those areas is stakes. Stakes have always been a bit of an issue for me, as Iíve mentioned before on numerous occasions. Despite various proclamations that I had Ďfixedí stakes or Ďfound the answersí, they always were difficult to work with when developing a story.

Over the years, Iíve gotten an increasing understanding of the nature of stakes. Not only in simply what works and what doesnít, but why those things work or donít. Iíve analyzed books and films, read research, and formulated my own findings. Usually when you come up with a theory that fits everything like a glove, itís a sign youíre on the right track. Well, Iíve found such a theory, and I wanted to share it with the other writers here.

Iíve gotten bits and pieces of what exactly personal stakes (the...
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FFC #76 - Opening impressions of The Stormlight Archive

Posted August 16th, 2021 at 03:04 PM by The Grim Reaper's Friend
Updated August 18th, 2021 at 02:20 PM by The Grim Reaper's Friend
TGRF's Fan Fiction Chronicles - Entry #76

A while ago, I finished the Mistborn trilogy, by Brandon Sanderson. In a word, Iíd describe it as a solid read. Some things I took issue with, others I thought were masterful. The end result was that it got me excited to start the Stormlight Archive. I finally got my hands on the first book about half a month ago, but in all that time, Iíve only read through the second chapter.

While there are a few reasons for my apparent lack of enthusiasm for the book (some of which have nothing to do with the book at all), there were a few which I feel have contributed heavily to the bookís current un-read state, and which I think can be instructive in how not to start a story.

Iím coming to realize that Brandon Sanderson is known for his unique style of switching PoV constantly throughout his books. While he certainly managed to use it to his advantage in Mistborn, here itís causing me to lose interest after I...
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TGRF's Reviews - Mistborn (The Hero of Ages)

Posted July 7th, 2021 at 01:10 PM by The Grim Reaper's Friend
I recently finished the final book in the Mistborn trilogy, so it's time to get down to the review.

Out of the trilogy, I feel like this book was definitely the best one. Sanderson kept up some unique style choices throughout the series, and in this book they started to pay off big time, increasing tension nearly every chapter. By about the last third of the book, the twists started coming thick and fast, as nearly every single loose thread and every seemingly-unimportant detail fell into place.

Ratings:
5: Amazing, above flawless.
4: Flawless, but doesn't really stand out.
3: Might have some issues, but works fine.
2: Has some issues which might detract from the story.
1: Flawed, bring the story down noticeably.

Title: The Hero of Ages
Author: Brandon Sanderson
My Rating: 4.25/5 - A great read

(Spoiler-free) Summary: Following the events of the second book, the heroes get down...
Posted in TGRF's Reviews
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FFC #75 - Series approaching... maybe

Posted June 26th, 2021 at 01:20 PM by The Grim Reaper's Friend
TGRF's Fan Fiction Chronicles - Entry #75

While the fires of my creative writing have been reduced to smoldering embers, I've been devoting my writing time instead to research. I feel like I'm ready to start work on my novels, and I want to clean up any remaining issues my writing has in preparation of that.

I've mentioned what those issues are previously, but there is one I have not mentioned, largely because I was unaware of it until now. It isn't so much an issue as a simple lack of experience, but it's still worth nailing down: how to write a series.

When it comes to writing a connected series of stories, there are two basic ways of outlining it (that I have found - if you know of others, please do let me know).

The first method is what I did with Dilmir. Each story is its own complete thing: character arc and 3-act structure separate from any other story. Each story introduces a new conflict, and each conflict is wrapped...
Posted in FFC
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FFC #74 - The plan

Posted June 16th, 2021 at 09:36 PM by The Grim Reaper's Friend
TGRF's Fan Fiction Chronicles - Entry #74

Writing is a field of unknowns. Take this entry. This could be my last entry for a good while, or I could be back in two weeks. I have no idea which.

Why could it be my last entry for a long time? Because I finally did what I've been saying I need to do off and on for a while now. I got a job. We'll see if this magically sparks my writing powers - so far they are sapped more than they have ever been.

However, getting a job isn't why I wanted to write this FFC. Throughout the later half of my writing years, I've posted various 'roadmaps to novels'. As a whole, they've been fairly inaccurate. But, because repeated evidence clearly has no effect on me, I'm going to post another one.

As I've said elsewhere, I've been nailing down the remaining issues my writing consistently has. I've noted everything I can find, and for the most part I know how to deal with all of them. It just remains...
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