How Many Characters is Too Many?

Vik Rubenfeld#AskVik8 Comments

Ray asks: In world building for an epic fantasy. I’m using the characters thoughts and actions (both heros and villains) to reveal more off the world. My biggest problem is too many characters. I already cut like 6. How can i tell if there are still to many? …and adds: @VikRubenfeld ty! Please keep in mind that i intendon writing … Read More

About Having Multiple Villains

Vik Rubenfeld#AskVik5 Comments

@Sylent_steel asked: @VikRubenfeld I'm writing a novel and putting a heavy dose of villains in act 2. Is that advised? — R Cox (@Sylent_steel) January 1, 2015 I replied: @Sylent_steel I love this question! Are the villains all working together? — Vik Rubenfeld (@VikRubenfeld) January 1, 2015 @Sylent_steel: @VikRubenfeld yes. All are part of same organization performing different functions and … Read More

Make Story Up as You Go, Or Work Backwards?

Vik Rubenfeld#AskVik1 Comment

@sharkimellow asked: @VikRubenfeld with stories that reveal something in the end, do you make it up as you go or do you work your way back and build up to it — Shaakira (@sharkimellow) December 19, 2014 To be sure, this is a matter of personal preference. At the same time, I replied: @sharkimellow In most cases it's better to … Read More

Tips for Novelists Interested in Writing for TV

Vik Rubenfeld#AskVikLeave a Comment

@sedoster asked: @VikRubenfeld Any tips for writers wanting to transition to tv? I write novels and comics, but know scripting for tv is much different. — GeekyAcrylics (@sedoster) December 30, 2014 This is a great question. And too big to be answered via Tweets alone. Here are a few tips. You can have a great novel without an antagonist (e.g. … Read More

All-Time Best Novels for Young Adults

Vik Rubenfeld#AskVik2 Comments

@bookuphoria asked: @VikRubenfeld What is one of your favourite novels of all time? Something you would recommend a young adult to read? — Rachel (@bookuphoria) December 17, 2014 I  replied: @bookuphoria I thought about this quite a bit. For young adults—Huck Finn, "All the Mowgli Stories" from The Jungle Books, &Sherlock Holmes. — Vik Rubenfeld (@VikRubenfeld) December 17, 2014 Timeless novels … Read More

The First Key Decision to Make When Starting a New Story

Vik Rubenfeld#AskVikLeave a Comment

I posted this on Twitter: Got a question about how to plot a story for novel/tv/film/play? Ask and I will answer via Twitter or blog post. 🙂 #amwriting — Vik Rubenfeld (@VikRubenfeld) December 14, 2014 I’m excited about this.  I got my first question this morning: @VikRubenfeld Want 2 write 3 short stories with the same theme either for tv or perhaps … Read More

From GATSBY—Fastest Example Yet of What a Work of Art Does

Vik RubenfeldNovelLeave a Comment

I was having lunch a couple weeks ago with two business colleagues.  I was trying to express to them what it is that a work of art communicates. I tried this Robert Frost poem, but it didn’t “connect.”  Then I tried the last line of Gatsy – one of the most famous sentences in the history of the novel: So we beat … Read More

Hamlet is a Huge Personality

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I was reading Hamlet recently. You know the story – he comes home from studying at university on the occasion of his father’s funeral, only to find that his mother has already gotten remarried to Claudius, the brother of Hamlet’s father. And as if that isn’t bad enough, the ghost of Hamlet’s father appears and tells Hamlet and two of his … Read More

What a Work of Art Communicates: Example from “Moby Dick”

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Here’s the paragraph that introduces Stubb, in Herman Melville’s MOBY DICK. Stubb was the second mate. He was a native of Cape Cod; and hence, according to local usage, was called a Cape-Cod-man. A happy-go-lucky; neither craven nor valiant; taking perils as they came with an indifferent air; and while engaged in the most imminent crisis of the chase, toiling away, … Read More

Amazingly Vivid Characters in “Jane Eyre”

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An illustration from the Book Jane Eyre is Reading in Chapter 1, “Bewick’s History of British Birds”  Here are the very first paragraphs of “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte. There was no possibility of taking a walk that day. We had been wandering, indeed, in the leafless shrubbery an hour in the morning; but since dinner (Mrs. Reed, when there … Read More