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Thread: The Stickpage Academy of Writing -- Learning and Development Center

  1. #11
    Keikaku means plan Devour's Avatar
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    Hooks, and How to Use Them

    In a nutshell, hooks are what keeps a reader reading your story. When they open your story, not sure what they're looking at or what it's about, a hook is what you use to capture their attention. Something interesting, or a small breadcrumb of information that hints what the catch to your story is. And like a breadcrumb trail, hooks are not one single sentence or one single moment in a story. If you create a good hook, decide that that was enough and then spend the rest of your story building up to your climax in melancholic fashion, you won't have the reader's interest by the time he reaches there.

    There are also different sizes of hooks. Hints and clues of Bigger Things are one form of them. Bigger hooks are usually done in dramatic reveals, usually in pivotal moments in the story leading up to your Big Moment. Your story should be full of them, pulling the reader ever-closer to your big moment, and hopefully increasing their interest as it goes.

    It's a breadcrumb trail indeed. In a wRHG battle, the 1st hook is usually your main character's supernatural powers, or the fact that they're getting ready to fight someone. Though it could be anything. Then, just as an example, further hooks can be things like raising the stakes if the MC loses, making the reader care about the battle's outcome. It can be complications, or perhaps simple Really Cool Ideas as supernatural beings did their supernatural things. As usual, it's examples Im giving here but I could never begin to list all the different ways you can do it.

    Want to know another definition of Hooks? They're also called Complications. And those are what this image is about:



    Imagine each dot as a complication to your story.A complication isn't only an obstacle for your character. A complication can also mean that your story is becoming more complicated, as more interesting information is introduced. You can have as many dots as you want, as long as it's not so many that it becomes overwhelming... or so few that the reader loses interest. Imagine them, peppered throughout your entire story, from the tiniest hooks to the greatest reveals.

    This, hooks, and this format, are a foundation of how to create a story that keeps readers interested.
    Last edited by Devour; 11-17-2017 at 08:52 PM.

  2. #12
    Seņor MemeBar Alphaeus's Avatar
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    EVERYONE -- ANNOUNCEMENT

    The Challenge system will be under construction starting this week, and will start full-throttle in December (if possible), but most likely January so that people can do their holiday stuff without worrying about deadlines and the like.
    Last edited by Alphaeus; 01-18-2018 at 07:54 AM.
    My wRHG Canon: The Remarkable Life of Altaer
    "oh fuck yeah, taco, you've been naughty" ~ Vorpal
    "" ~ Index
    Spoiler for More stuff:

  3. #13
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    The Terminology of Story

    The Terminology of Story

    We've all been there at least once. We try to pick in on a conversation, only to realise we've got no clue what these people are talking about. It's almost like they're talking in an alien language. Well, to that I say no more. To make sure you won't be standing there smiling like an idiot, I'll tell you what's what. The concepts I'll cover will be handled in greater depth in their respective lessons, for now just try to familiarize yourself with them. That way, they won't seem as alien anymore when they pop up again in the future, and you'll have a point of reference. Without further ado, let's get to it.

    Spoiler for The Fundamentals of Storytelling:


    Spoiler for Structure:


    Spoiler for Characters:


    Spoiler for The Story Arch:


    There are still concepts left untouched in this list, but these are the essential ones. Understanding what has been said here, is already understanding half of what I have to teach. All lessons following this one will, in a sense, simply be covering concepts touched on today in more depth. For those still doubting that stories share universal building blocks, why don't you grab your favourite movie, book and/or play and see how much of the above applies? If by then you're still doubting, grab a new story, and chances are you'll see the same elements recurring time and time again.

    These are the unmistakable cornerstones of storytelling.

  4. #14
    Seņor MemeBar Alphaeus's Avatar
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    The Basics of Producing Good Written Works


    Though the focus of this is on academic writing, most of the material in this book excerpt is focused around the ability to write well in the first place, and producing good work, which is a universal subject. On that note, here is 3 Short Excerpts from a Scholarly Resource.
    My wRHG Canon: The Remarkable Life of Altaer
    "oh fuck yeah, taco, you've been naughty" ~ Vorpal
    "" ~ Index
    Spoiler for More stuff:

  5. #15
    Seņor MemeBar Alphaeus's Avatar
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    On The Topic of Reading Old Books ~~ C. S. Lewis, edited slightly by Alphaeus

    There is a strange idea abroad that in every subject the ancient books should be read only by the professionals, and that the amateur should content himself with the modern books. Thus I have found as a tutor in English Literature that if the average student wants to find out something about Platonism, the very last thing he thinks of doing is to take a translation of Plato off the library shelf and read the Symposium. He would rather read some dreary modern book ten times as long, all about "isms" and influences and only once in twelve pages telling him what Plato actually said. The error is rather an amiable one, for it springs from humility. The student is half afraid to meet one of the great philosophers face to face. He feels himself inadequate and thinks he will not understand him. But if he only knew, the great man, just because of his greatness, is much more intelligible than his modern commentator. The simplest student will be able to understand, if not all, yet a very great deal of what Plato said; but hardly anyone can understand some modern books on Platonism. It has always therefore been one of my main endeavours as a teacher to persuade the young that firsthand knowledge is not only more worth acquiring than secondhand knowledge, but is usually much easier and more delightful to acquire.

    Now this seems to me topsy-turvy. Naturally, since I myself am a writer, I do not wish the ordinary reader to read no modern books. But if he must read only the new or only the old, I would advise him to read the old. And I would give him this advice precisely because he is an amateur and therefore much less protected than the expert against the dangers of an exclusive contemporary diet. A new book is still on its trial and the amateur is not in a position to judge it. It has to be tested against the great body of Christian thought down the ages, and all its hidden implications (often unsuspected by the author himself) have to be brought to light. Often it cannot be fully understood without the knowledge of a good many other modern books. If you join at eleven o'clock a conversation which began at eight you will often not see the real bearing of what is said. Remarks which seem to you very ordinary will produce laughter or irritation and you will not see why—the reason, of course, being that the earlier stages of the conversation have given them a special point. In the same way sentences in a modern book which look quite ordinary may be directed at some other book; in this way you may be led to accept what you would have indignantly rejected if you knew its real significance. The only safety is to have a standard of plain, central Christianity ("mere Christianity" as Baxter called it) which puts the controversies of the moment in their proper perspective. Such a standard can be acquired only from the old books. It is a good rule, after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between. If that is too much for you, you should at least read one old one to every three new ones.

    Every age has its own outlook. It is specially good at seeing certain truths and specially liable to make certain mistakes. We all, therefore, need the books that will correct the characteristic mistakes of our own period. And that means the old books. All contemporary writers share to some extent the contemporary outlook—even those, like myself, who seem most opposed to it. Nothing strikes me more when I read the controversies of past ages than the fact that both sides were usually assuming without question a good deal which we should now absolutely deny. They thought that they were as completely opposed as two sides could be, but in fact they were all the time secretly united—united with each other and against earlier and later ages—by a great mass of common assumptions. We may be sure that the characteristic blindness of the twentieth century—the blindness about which posterity will ask, "But how could they have thought that?"—lies where we have never suspected it, and concerns something about which there is untroubled agreement between Hitler and President Roosevelt or between Mr. H. G. Wells and Karl Barth. None of us can fully escape this blindness, but we shall certainly increase it, and weaken our guard against it, if we read only modern books. Where they are true they will give us truths which we half knew already. Where they are false they will aggravate the error with which we are already dangerously ill. The only palliative is to keep the clean sea breeze of the centuries blowing through our minds, and this can be done only by reading old books. Not, of course, that there is any magic about the past. People were no cleverer then than they are now; they made as many mistakes as we. But not the same mistakes. They will not flatter us in the errors we are already committing; and their own errors, being now open and palpable, will not endanger us. Two heads are better than one, not because either is infallible, but because they are unlikely to go wrong in the same direction. To be sure, the books of the future would be just as good a corrective as the books of the past, but unfortunately we cannot get at them.
    My wRHG Canon: The Remarkable Life of Altaer
    "oh fuck yeah, taco, you've been naughty" ~ Vorpal
    "" ~ Index
    Spoiler for More stuff:

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