whiterabbitanimation asked: I need some advice, I have an idea for a book series but i'm afraid that its too vast and i have no idea where to start. I've got 4 main characters that are within the same huge story arc but they're in different times, worlds, and universes. I've written down various dialogues and scenes that are going to played out, but i have absolutely no idea where to go. I would really appreciate anything, to help me get this running.
Listen to your instincts. something is wrong
one of my favorite recent writing stories is how Steve Zallian approached writing American gangster. he wrote completely separate drafts for the lead characters. one starring Russell Crowe character and one starring Denzel Washington’s character.
after he completed those drafts he then weaves them together scene by scene. only putting in the scenes that truly furthered the story and character. he then was able to put together a dual narrative that completely serviced both characters beautifully.
I have done this. it is such a blast. and it keeps things from getting unruly. it very easy to get unruly. but writing is puzzle work. pieces have to fit
ohai-mg asked: How important is drawing ability for someone who might like to write comics? It seems like many writers out there (yourself included) are also pretty talented artists, and I'm just here with some crude stick figures.
It is important that you understand visuals. even if you can’t physically draw on a professional level that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t put pen to paper and figure out your pages to the best of your ability.
much like some great directors are also actors or have studied acting, I think it would behoove a writer to take art lessons. life drawing classes. just learn what it feels like to point pen to paper. experience it. sympathize with that.
your comic book page is a piece of real estate and you are going to be putting things on that real estate that have value. to understand how much real estate you have and how valuable it is you should put pen to paper.
you never have to show it to anybody. I draw page layouts all the time that I don’t show anybody. I just want to take a look at the page that I’m trying to figure out
prospero101 asked: I feel like all the characters I write are from the same mold. How do I break out of that habit and make more varied, interesting characters?
for a start, Base them on people that you know who are very different from the kinds of characters that you naturally write.
Another great tip for this, for getting your writing out of YOUR OWN head and not confining characters to doing and thinking the way you would do and think…. remember that Seinfeld where George decides that all of his natural instincts lead him to not happy outcomes… and then he decides to just do THE OPPOSITE of what he would normally think?
It’s a good practice for writing a character outside of your own experience… make their choice the opposite of what you would do… and then find a great way that they JUSTIFY it.
It worked for the main character in Fight Club when he needed to create an alternate identity to do the things he couldn’t do… or wouldn’t normally do…
Sometimes you have to develop odd little tricks to snap yourself into thinking in the skin of extreme characters.
I’ve trained myself to be a diplomatic person… to try to have an empathetic what of dealing with people… but that won’t work if the character is incredibly extreme and would not behave that way… so then you think of ways that they JUSTIFY that extreme behavior.