Narrative Structure

Writing With Multiple Point of View Characters

Writing with multiple character viewpoints. Should we? Why? Why Not? If we do decide to create a cast of viewpoint characters, what's the best way to do it?


Kishōtenketsu: The Four Act Narrative (or Plot Without Conflict)

Kishōtenketsu is a four act narrative structure that is not based on conflict and resolution. It's a common format in Manga narratives and video games.

fixing bad writing

10 Reasons Why your Writing Sucks and What You Can Do To Make It Not

Sometimes a writer thinks their works sucks and it's just a crisis of confidence. Other times the writing actually sucks. How can you tell the difference?

narrative structure

Studying Character and Narrative Structure: The Morphology of the Folktale

Some of the most common Western narrative structures are derived from traditional forms like folktales, fairy tales and myths. We’ve...

tips on writing a mystery novel

How to Write a Mystery Novel: A Five Act Structure

Ever wondered how to write a mystery novel? With rare exception, all mystery stories have a five act structure based on the classic theory of mythic narrative structure, the Hero's Journey. Writing a mystery means understanding this narrative formula and designing your plot around its structure.

writing romance

How to Write a Perfect Romance Using the Hero’s Journey Structure

The idea of the Hero's Journey was compiled studying folklore and legends and as such, we'll most often see the Hero's Journey applied to narratives in fantasy and other speculative fiction genres. But, how well does the Hero's Journey apply to stories in non-speculative genres? Can we write a romance using the Hero's Journey?

How to Start a Novel: Writing Lessons from China Miéville

How to Start a Novel: Writing Lessons from China Miéville

There are as many examples of how to start a novel as there are individual novels. One way might not work for you as a writer nor for the story you're working on, another will be perfect. In thinking about different ways to open a story, I’ve taken the first chapters, the Prologue and Chapter 1 of Perdido Street Station (2000) by China Miéville and broken it down section by section, analysing the structure of this very special novel in order to see what lessons Miéville has to teach we lesser writers about the craft of writing.

writing horror stories

Three Killer Ways to Start a Horror Story (with examples)

What’s the best way to start a horror story? You’ve got your excellent idea, a great plot and a killer ending. How are you going to begin? Horror is all about effect, delivering fear and dread and dislocating readers from their place of comfort. Starting the story in the right place goes a long way to set up your story and lay the foundations for the emotional impact you’re aiming to deliver.

narrative structure

How to Write Classic Narrative Structure: The Hero’s Journey

Every story has a structure. From the simplest narrative, like a joke, to a complex narrative like an epic novel series, stories are built on frameworks deeply embedded into our cultures. Understanding narrative structure can be helpful in working out how to best develop and write your story.

combining genres hybrid genre

Writing Hybrid Genres in Fiction: How To Do It Right

Why are some hybrid genre narratives successful when others fail? How can we approach creating a hybrid genre in our own writing projects?