Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Selections from Pixar's 22 Rules for Storytelling


Note: This information comes from the following article. I cannot take credit for any of these rules.

When I stumbled on Pixar's 22 Rules of Storytelling, I realized the company knows exactly what they're doing. It's clear to me now why Pixar is the leading contender when it comes to film and animation. Here are a few of my favorite points:
#2: Keep in mind what's interesting to you as an audience, not what's fun to do as a writer. They can be very different.

#7: Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard. Get yours working up front.

#9: When you're stuck, make a list of what wouldn't happen next. More often than not, the material that gets you unstuck appears.

#15: If you were your character, in this situation, how would you feel? Honesty lends credibility to unbelievable situations.

#19: Coincidences that get characters into trouble are great. Coincidences that get them out of it is cheating.

#22: Putting it on paper allows you to start fixing it. If a perfect idea stays in your head, you'll never share it with anyone.

These are just a few of the excellent tips Pixar offers about storytelling. Interested? Read them all. You just might learn something.

What do you think? What is your favorite storytelling tip?

Saturday, December 8, 2012

How to Get Into Your Characters' Heads


As a writer, I know it's difficult to get inside your characters' heads, especially if a character is different from you. Creating believable characters means getting to know a character all the way down to the core of his or her being. If you're finding it hard to identify with your character and figure out everything that makes him or her tick, consider trying the following strategies:

Write an entry in your character's journal.

Write a letter from your character to a friend or loved one.

Walk, talk, eat, and move like your character for a set amount of time.

Write a bulleted list of important moments in your character's life.

Make a playlist of songs that remind you of your character.

These are just a couple of techniques for getting over writer's block where characters are concerned.

What do you think? How do you get into your characters' heads?

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