Sometimes stories hinge on coincidences, and personally I think that’s fine. Sometimes. It depends on the size of the coincidences, the amount of them, and how they are used. I think you can get away with stretching plausibility a bit, but stretch it too far and readers just won’t buy it.
Now, some readers will likely be turned off by any coincidence being used to drive the plot along. But you can say that about a lot of things. You can’t please everyone; the aim is to try to keep a significant amount of readers happy. You want the majority of your readers not to get annoyed at you.
So, the size of the coincidences. I’ll give some examples of what I think is acceptable, and what might be pushing it a bit.
For one, let’s say you have two important characters just happening to bump into eachother at an opportune time. Why are these characters important? Do they have pre-existing links to one another, the villain, or any other important character, or does one or both of them only end up being important because of this meeting? If it’s the latter then it’s not even a coincidence, it’s just something that happens, if it’s the former, then it is. And I think that in many cases it could be an acceptable one. Could be. I’m going to be supremely unhelpful and point out that every story is different, and every writer has to make their own judgement call, taking the opinions of others they’ve let read the story into account.
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Embsay Crag is a hill in North Yorkshire. It’s not a big hill, and it doesn’t have a trig point or a summit cairn, but it’s a nice climb and there’s good views from the top. It’s part of Barden Moor, which is part of the Bolton Abbey Estate. The estate stretches pretty far beyond the sort of main, central bit. I think Embsay Crag and Reservoir are towards the edge of it, I’m not entirely sure where exactly the borders are.
Anyway. Barden Moor is used for grouse hunting, and walking is restricted during the grouse hunting season. I’m not sure if the entire moor is closed off, but it’s something to be careful about. Oh, and there’s some bits of it you’re not allowed to take dogs on. Basically, it’s privately owned land, so it can be subject to restrictions, so if you’re planning to go walking there it’s a good idea to check if you’re OK to first.
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Should I tell you why I love you?
Well, I haven’t got a clue.
You’re selfish, cruel and vicious
There’s no love for me in you.
In fact, no love for anyone
Your heart must be made of ice
You do what you want, and let
Other people pay the price.
And it’s not like you can’t help it
This is how you choose to be
You’re blatantly a monster
And who knows that best but me?
Continue reading “Poetry – Should I Tell You?”
This post is about plot twists. A good plot twist can really elevate a story and make it truly memorable.
The emphasis is a good plot twist. What would I define as a good plot twist? Something that’s unexpected but not out of nowhere; on the first read you don’t see it coming, but on the reread you can spot the clues. Of course, even with a really good plot twist a discerning reader might see it coming, but if it was impossible to guess then you’d get the ‘out of nowhere’ problem. But if a reader is going to work it out, then it shouldn’t be easy for them.
I think one of the biggest things that causes badly done plot twists is that I think sometimes writers throw them in there because they feel they have to. You don’t want a story to be too predictable, but you don’t necessarily need a full on plot twist to achieve that. I think it depends on the kind of story it is, how long it goes on for. I couldn’t give any kind of specific thoughts of when a twist is and is not a good idea. I think most stories could work well with or without one, it’s just which way it would work better.
What this post is really going to be is me rambling about my thoughts on some popular plot twists until I run out of steam.
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This post is about knowing who the audience for your writing is, and keeping that in mind. If you know who’s most likely to read your writing then you’re going to have a better chance at appealing to a wider audience.
Now, a lot of people say they write for themselves, which is fair enough. When you’re writing – or creating any kind of art – then it helps if it’s something you want to do. Writers get started writing because it’s something they enjoy. And even when you’re writing something that you aim to share with others, I think you should still write what you want to write, what you feel inspired to write.
However, if you want people to read, enjoy, and read more of your writing, you do have to consider your audience. Sometimes there may be a story that you’re really, really attached to, but that’s doesn’t necessarily mean anyone else wants to read it. If you want to pursue your writing as a potential career, it helps to learn to tell when that’s the case.
As always, I am not an authority here. I don’t actually know if the stories I have deemed as having potential to be liked by other people actually are any good. But I have been trying, and I have had to accept some of my stories as being hopeless in that regard. I’ll still work on them sometimes, for fun, but they really are just written just for me.
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You’re the reason I am scared,
You’re the reason no-one cares,
What happens to me
Because they can’t see
That you’re the reason why.
You’re the reason I can’t sleep,
You’re the reason that I keep
My head down, mouth shut,
And I’m a wreck, but
Everyone blames me.
Continue reading “Poetry – You’re the Reason”
Brimham Rocks must be one of the most remarkable places in the UK. I don’t say that lightly. For the most part, the places I go walking are very pretty, but pretty is about it. Some places get more impressive if you research them, but stuff that makes you go “Wow” on first sight is rare – definitely not unheard of, but it is a treat to stumble upon these places.
Brimham Rocks is very much a wow place. It is a patch on Brimham Moor which is covered in big rock formations. The rocks are formed from millstone grit, and you can see rocks like them in various parts of the British Isles, but not loads of them packed into one patch like here. Basically, if you saw one of these rocks just stood on its own somewhere, you’d be impressed, but instead you’re bombarded with them. It’s pretty awesome.
It’s also a lot lusher than you’d expect such a rocky area to be. It’s as green as anywhere else around here, and there’s lots of trees. The place would be amazing whatever, but all the green adds a level of prettiness that just makes it that bit more special.
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