Posted in Characterization

Character Richness

Have you ever read a book, and you liked the characters so much that you didn’t want the book to end? Oh yes, I’ve been down that road myself. That means the author did their job of creating characters that stand out and touch your heart. But, how did they do that?

  1. Their characters displayed emotion to the point that the reader ‘felt’ right along with them.
  2. The character displayed a habit or two. This personalizes the character, makes them human.
  3. The character was relatable. We as a reader could identify with that character. We may have understood what they were experiencing. If not, then we could at least feel for them and/or root for them.
  4. The dialogue sounded real and not mechanical or robotic. Maybe they made you laugh or cry.

These are just some of the elements a writer uses in order to bring a richness to their characters. Take your time developing them. Observe people around you and jot down notes of things you see or hear them say or do.

Posted in Writing

Writing Growth

Your growth as a writer is important. After all, the better you get, the better your story/poem will be. When that happens, your reader response goes up. You also want to please others with your writing and getting better at it will accomplish that. Below are some ways to advance your writing skilks:

  • Write Everyday: You might not feel like writing everyday, but if you write something…anything for just 5 to 10 minutes, it’s still something. Oftentimes, that 5 to 10 minutes turns out to be longer without you realizing it. What writing everyday is doing is getting you into a habit. Great! That’s what you want.
  • Use Writing Prompts: These are particularly useful when you don’t know what to write about. Plus, if you don’t feel like writing, it’s a great way to get you writing something. Keep in mind, 1 prompt can be used for a number of different stories/poems. The internet is full of writing promt list. Just type that into Google Search
  • Get Feedback: I know, no one likes to be told they need improvement. We all enjoy hearing how good we are. BUT…hearing how you can improve will raise you to that next level.
  • Read from the Best: Read works from some of the best authors you enjoy reading. Do not copy them, but learn from their stylistic choices. Then use what you learn to improve YOUR style.
  • Take Classes/Courses: Talk about beneficial. This is an opportunity for you to ask questions and sharpen your skills as a writer in a more in depth manner.
  • Read Books about Writing: There are so many books out there on the subject of writing. Whether you are writing fiction, non-fiction, or poetry, you can find books on the different aspects that go into each. From story structure to learning how to incorporate emotions into your characters. These books will help you. Some of them even have exercises so you can practice.

Have fun with your writing growth journey. I promise you it will be a great adventure in and of itself.

Posted in emotions, Fiction

Conveying Anger

I talked about emotions in previous posts in months past, but today I’m going to focus on one of them. Anger. I’ve said it before, you don’t merely want to tell the reader that your character is angry. You want the reader to FEEL the anger…right off the page.

Bad Example:
Dan was angry at the sight of his girlfriend in the arms of another guy.

Good Example:
Dan stopped short and did a double take, as he passed through the student union on his way back to his dorm. It couldn’t be her. No, no. His eyes betrayed him. After all, he saw the back of her head. It could be any girl. His brain wanted to leave but his feet stood glued in place, and his eyes were pealed on that one girl. Was it her? Was it Ann? Then, as if in slow motion, the girl turned her head, her eyes stopping on his. She smiled, then leaned in toward the strange guy and kissed him full on. A heat swelled within his chest. Why was she doing this? If she wanted to break up with him, she could have said something instead of this show. The heat within continued to swell and his nostrils pulsed. Before he knew it he was upon the both of them. His fists clenched to his sides.

Posted in Writing

Words to Write By

When it comes to writing tag lines, such as ‘said John,’ sometimes we need other words to say instead of the word ‘said’. Why? Because said gets too monotonous. And in this writer’s opinion, it can ruin the flow. It kind of takes the realism out of the dialogue. So…..what are some alternatives? See the list below.

  • responded
  • replied
  • answered
  • stated
  • asked
  • stormed
  • ranted
  • joked
  • gushed
  • noted
  • observed
  • agreed
  • cried
  • added
  • gasped
  • explained
  • grumbled
  • boasted

There are much more than these, but you get the idea. Notice these words dig deeper into the mood/emotions of the speaker. That’s what you want because, what this does, is touch the readers’ emotions. That’s what you want.

Posted in point of view

Strong Point of View

First Person POV: The story is told from the story teller’s point of view and uses the pronoun ‘I’, ‘us’, ‘our’, or ‘ourselves’. It can also be narrated by the protagonist/main character, witness, or side character.

Third Person POV: The story is told from outside the story and the narrator refers to the characters by name or as ‘he/she/they’ and also ‘him/her/them’. Types of third person include:

  • Third Person Omniscient: the narration of the story is told with a voice as if from the author. They take on an all knowing perspective on the story being told.
    1. Example: As Rob and Janet slunk in their seats to watch the movie at the drive-in theater, he hoped he’d get lucky in the backseat of his car, and Janet secretly wished it was Dave snuggling next to her instead.
  • Third Person Limited: only the narrator knows only the thoughts and feelings of a single character. Other characters are presented externally.
    1. Example: He reached over to hold Jill’s hand but stopped halfway. Did she want him to, or would she slap him?
  • Third Person Objective: think of this POV as a peeping tom. The narrator is neutral and not privy to the thoughts or feelings of the characters’.
    1. Example: She twisted her hands, as she paced the floor of her bedroom.


For a stronger point of view that pulls the reader into the story, use verbs that create action directly (note the bold faced words in the examples above). When you do this, emotions are created at the same time, which is felt by the reader and pulls them in even further. Now your reader is hooked. They want to know how the story is going to play out and change for the better/or worse. Have you ever read a book you can’t put down? Strong point of view is all part of that.

Posted in setting

Setting (Paint Your Picture Continued)

Photo by Maria Orlova on Pexels.com

Where are you? What does that place look like? What feeling does it convey? Is it essential to the story? Did something significant occur there?

When you are selecting settings for your story, the reader must know where the story is taking place. More importantly, they want to ‘see’ it and ‘feel’ it. You may have just read the previous sentence and said, “Well, duhhh.” I kid you not. There are some writers out there who don’t pay enough attention to their setting. It leaves the reader scratching their head. I’ve read books where I have had to back track because the setting wasn’t paid its due diligence. I don’t know about you, but I picture in my head what I’m reading. It plays out like a movie. If I can’t see it, the story lacks that flow. Once you hook the reader on the first page, you want to keep them.

Posted in Poetry

Freedom: An American Poem by L. M. Montes

Photo by Frank Cone on Pexels.com

Turn your eyes up to the sky,
the sun shoots you a glint,
a light, a warmth, a tender smile,
from beams of perfect mint.

A gray that creeps and grows,
now reaches with its clutches,
its evil now it plants and sows,
and grabs all that it touches.

Its messages now blacken,
the lightening strikes the soul,
a crack, a thunder, morals slacken,
the attitudes are coal.

But the eagle now takes flight,
its wings woosh guiding light,
to We The People in the night,
who now will stand and fight!

By L. M. Montes