A step away from the more common “limited” viewpoint, omniscience places the narrator in a position of all-knowing and all-seeing power. The narration can easily jump from MC Martha to Love Interest Lucy to George the Cashier, within the same chapter and often without page breaks. As readers, we can effectively see things from the point of best perspective or the point of best action, even if the best perspective is a bird flying overhead or Generic Soldier #1. Not every character will get a complete arc, but each head you get inside should still have a distinctive personality. It’s a hard line to balance, since you’ve got the narrative voice on top of a unique character voice. It’s not difficult to give a unique voice to your main characters, but not every generic onlooker should sound the same, either.
The perspective allows you to follow the action. If Martha gets knocked out, instead of time jumping to when she wakes up, you can shift into Lucy’s head for a bit. You’re not even limited to the main characters—you can easily get into the villain’s head and let us know what they have planned. This can, however, make it hard to give a good plot twist. This will usually shift your story’s focus to not be on the twist itself, but how they deal with the results.
The narrator might foreshadow upcoming events, either of importance or not. It adds a level of dramatic irony (where you know more than the characters). And really, be careful just to hint. The narrator might already know how things end, but you don’t want to give things away if it’s important.
Often the narrator has its own voice. Many times when I see 3rd person omniscient narrators, they use their all-seeing powers to pop into the heads of random characters as an opportunity for comic relief. They might make fun of characters, or offer their own opinions on the events. The characters have no idea that this all-seeing narrator is following their thoughts and actions, so again, dramatic irony.
The perspective allows characters to inspect each other, which makes relationships and possible relationships less suspenseful. Instead of being stuck in Martha’s head the entire time, wondering if Lucy likes her or not, the narrator can very easily switch to Lucy and give an insight about her feelings towards Martha. 3rd person omniscient is very common in romance novels for this reason. It ups the tension knowing they both like each other, but neither will admit it. The tension comes in their personal struggle to act or not act on their desires.
Examples of sentences you might read in third person omniscient:
A woman across the street saw the teenager disappear into the wormhole, but paused only a minute. She blinked. A trick of the eyes, she decided. Besides, she was already late for work.
Grug the goblin scurried away to do his master’s command, pleased that his expertise would finally be recognized. He’d get a promotion for this—all he had to do was kill some overrated girl with a sword. But Grug had a lot to learn about girls with swords.
Genres typically told in this tense:
- High Fantasy, especially when there is an emphasis on fight scenes. Each fighter can react and size up the other’s movements, and appreciate each other’s skills. (The Legend of Drizzt series by RA Salvatore)
- Romance. Like stated before, there’s tension in knowing what each side wants, and then knowing why they won’t act on it. Plus, romances generally cater towards a female audience. This POV allows readers into the more familiar woman’s perspective as well as the man’s romantic thoughts towards her. You can read all the romantic things your man never says out loud, but still thinks about!
- Anything can be told in this POV, but make sure there’s a reason for it. Since the default storytelling mode is 3rd person limited, there should be purpose in straying from that.
If you want to write in this perspective, read plenty of books written in it. Here are a handful of book recommendations in 3rd person omniscient to get your started: Downsiders by Neal Shusterman, Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer, The Legend of Drizzt series by RA Salvatore. The first two link to book reviews with a creative writing analysis, both of which talk more about the narrative voice and ways to successfully implement a 3rd person omniscient narrative.
I’m outlining my novel for the tenth time, and my head is going soft from repeated bashing against the wall. It’s one of those times when I should have listened to my own advice about three months ago, but whatever. We live to learn. Or something. Also I am here so that you don’t screw up the way I do.
Make it as bad for your characters as you can. Show no mercy
I fell into the trap of feeling sorry for my characters. It sounds ridiculous since they are most certainly not real people. Yet again, I’ve made their life too easy, too pleasant, too smooth.
So if something is going right for them, think of ways you can make it more complicated. Not necessarily world-endingly so, but every chapter should contain something for them to worry about.
Conflict from multiple sides, more layers
Say your character has to find someone. That goal clashes with that of your bad guy. So far so standard. But the interesting bits are in between.
Maybe they have to break laws along the way, meaning the police will be upset at them, their significant other, their parents. Additionally, someone else you didn’t know about might also be looking for the missing person. They might be forced to bribe, steal, lie, hurt others in the process, do things outside of their comfort zone.
There’s also the distinction between internal and external conflict. In this case the external conflict are the people and obstacles in her way of finding the person, the internal conflict her grappling with morality, how far she is willing to go in order to save the person.
Don’t overdo it
I know what I said in the beginning. There’s a reason for not kicking them all the time, something needs to go right for them after all or else they’ll come across as inept or impossibly unlucky. Because there is a difference between your guys having a bad day and having the universe declare them their favorite chew toy.
If you want to throw questions my way, the askbox is always open.
Every word you write makes you a better writer. There is no such thing as ‘wasted time’ when you are writing.
Want more writerly content? Follow maxkirin.tumblr.com!
Here’s a thing I’ve had around in my head for a while!
Okay, so I’m pretty sure that by now everyone at least is aware of Steampunk, with it’s completely awesome Victorian sci-fi aesthetic. But what I want to see is Solarpunk – a plausible near-future sci-fi genre, which I like to imagine as based on updated Art Nouveau, Victorian, and Edwardian aesthetics, combined with a green and renewable energy movement to create a world in which children grow up being taught about building electronic tech as well as food gardening and other skills, and people have come back around to appreciating artisans and craftspeople, from stonemasons and smithies, to dress makers and jewelers, and everyone in between. A balance of sustainable energy-powered tech, environmental cities, and wicked cool aesthetics.
A lot of people seem to share a vision of futuristic tech and architecture that looks a lot like an ipod – smooth and geometrical and white. Which imo is a little boring and sterile, which is why I picked out an Art Nouveau aesthetic for this.
With energy costs at a low, I like to imagine people being more inclined to focus their expendable income on the arts!
Aesthetically my vision of solarpunk is very similar to steampunk, but with electronic technology, and an Art Nouveau veneer.
So here are some buzz words~
Tailors and dressmakers!
Stained glass window solar panels!!!
Education in tech and food growing!
Less corporate capitalism, and more small businesses!
Solar rooftops and roadways!
Communal greenhouses on top of apartments!
Electric cars with old-fashioned looks!
No-cars-allowed walkways lined with independent shops!
Renewable energy-powered Art Nouveau-styled tech life!
Can you imagine how pretty it would be to have stained glass windows everywhere that are actually solar panels? The tech is already headed in that direction! Or how about wide-brim hats, or parasols that are topped with discreet solar panel tech incorporated into the design, with ports you can stick your phone charger in to?
(((Character art by me; click the cityscape pieces to see artist names)))
i am so into this wow
sign me the fuck up
I want a solarpunk future. *_*
SOLARPUNK OH MY GODDDDDD i love it
CURVY ORGANIC LINES, REFLECT NATURE, FLORALS VEGETATION, UGHHHH I WANT IT
Pixars 22 Rules of Story Telling
9 is worth the price of admission, holy crap.
This is genius. So many great writing tips!
And this is why Pixar is a master in their field.
Why do I feel so weird reblogging this… this is the weekend dammit! Anyway, great advice.
Pixar you have no idea how much this actually helps me.
I’ve always liked the way this blog posts breaks down the novel structure. Just remember - it’s a suggestion and something to think about, but it is definitely not the rule.
Television, books, and movies seem to be overwhelmed with stories about the apocalypse, but why has it become so popular? Obviously, these types of stories have existed in the past, but it has exploded in the past few years. I started thinking about what the fascination could be and why we’re so interested in the apocalypse. Why is there such a big draw toward stories about the end of mankind?
At first, I assumed that maybe people are feeling unsatisfied with how the world is now, so the apocalypse would sort of give us the chance to “start over”. Perhaps people are bored with their jobs, annoyed with paying bills, etc. and they want to live in a world where all you had to focus on was your survival. Maybe the apocalypse would give most people an equal chance to be happy. Then I started to think that’s a bit morbid and there must be more to it than that. Worrying about your loved ones’ survival, fighting diseases without medicine, and living without technology wouldn’t exactly be paradise. We’ve evolved to live this way because it gives us the best chance of living a happy and healthy life (although not everyone benefits from this). However, the idea that we could live in a much simpler world is something that could be appealing to readers.
From a writing standpoint, penning a novel about the apocalypse provides incredible creative freedom. I started writing one because I wanted to see myself as a main character. I wanted to see what I would do if I was in a situation like that. How would I survive? What would I do? Where would my boundaries lie? Writing about the apocalypse allows us to explore mankind’s deepest issues. Thinking about how far people would go to survive is fascinating and thinking about what YOU would personally do is sometimes frightening. I think readers also like to put themselves in the minds of the main characters of these novels.
Exploring creative freedom further, through apocalyptic novels writers are able to create a whole new world—even if it has to be somewhat based on our own world. We can turn our world into something different and explore different themes. Even if an apocalyptic novel has villains like “zombies”, the antagonist often becomes mankind in general. Fantasy provides this element, but apocalyptic novels feel more real. They usually feel like they could actually happen. That’s appealing to readers because it’s also terrifying. Technically our society could end at any time, so it all seems possible.
Now that we’ve hopefully starting thinking more about our own novels, here are a few tips on writing a great apocalyptic novel:
Pick a theme
Many apocalyptic novels or post-apocalyptic novels revolve around some sort of theme. You still shouldn’t preach to your audience, but you should try to have a point-of-view. Think about what you’re trying to say with your novel. Is your story a commentary on how people treat each other? Are you talking about violence? A good theme will help people relate to your story on a deeper level.
Choose your monster
These types of novels can be overwhelming if there’s too many “monsters”. Decide what you want to be the main antagonist. Disease? Other people? Zombies? Vampires? Weather? There are many factors that could lead to a post apocalyptic situation, so take the time to figure out where your story is going.
Know the rules of your world
Whatever rules you make for your world, you need to stick with them. If it’s in the future and there’s different technology, make sure it’s all the same throughout. If your zombies contracted a disease somehow through a specific way, keep it that way. Know your world just as well as you know your story.
Don’t forget your characters
The weakness of many post apocalyptic novels is usually character development. I know the situation of your novel is interesting, but you need to take the time to figure out your characters and what they want. Survival will probably be one of their worries, but you need to develop it further. Where are they going? How will they get there? Character development is always important no matter what the premise of the story is.
So you want to make an OC?: A Masterpost of Ways to Create, Develop, and Make Good OCs!
i made this masterpost in hopes that it helps you in making your own OCs ah;; it can also apply to developing RP characters i suppose! if you’d like to add more resources then go for it sugar pea (´ヮ`)!
How to Write Better OCs:
- basic tips on how to make your oc even better
- tragic backstory? learn how to write one/make yours great
- writing specific characters
- a wordier, great guide on how to develop your character
- kick out those vague descriptions and make them AWESOME
- how to actually make an OC
- Q&A (to develop characters)
- more Q&As
- giving your character a backstory
- how to write an attractive character
- adding more racial diversity
- avoiding tokenism, AKA, how to add diversity to your cast not just because you “need” it
- writing sexuality and gender expression (doesnt include non binary, if you have a good ref to that, please add on!)
- masterpost on writing more diversity into your story
- cultures of the world
- guides to drawing different ethnicities (not just a great art reference, but also really helpful in appearance descriptions!)
Mary Sue/Gary Stu
- Test to see if your character is a Sue
- Explains subdivisions of Sues/Stus
- Powerful Characters Don’t Have to Be Sues
- villain generator
- need an evil sounding name for your evil character? bam
- villain archetypes
- what’s your villain’s motive for being a villain?
- character perceptions (What your character thinks of themselves and what others think of them)
- how to write strong relationships between two characters
- 8 ways to write better characters and develop their relationships with others
- OCxLove Interest Handbook
- develop your couple with good ol’ Q&A!
- how to write realistic relationships
- how to write relatives for your characters (this is more OC related to a canon character, but will help in writing family members in general)
- 12 common archetypes
- 8 archetypes for male/female characters
- female archetypes (goes pretty indepth from two main categories)
- a list of archetypes
- tips for better design
- basic appearance generator
- pinterest board for character design (includes NSFW and images of skeletons/exposed muscle (?) so tread carefully!)
- clothing ref masterpost
- give your character better powers
- a list of professions
- proactive vs reactive characters
- positive and negative traits
- interest generator
- skills generator
- motivation generator
- 123 ideas for character flaws
- list of phobias
again, this is to help inspire you or help establish your OCs! i hope you get a lot of info and help from this ahh ( ´ ▽ ` )ﾉ
A GUIDE TO AUSTRALIA (FOR RP'ING PURPOSES)- requested by anon
Firstly, the BASICS when it comes to Australia:
- The capital of Australia is not Melbourne or Sydney. But Canberra. (Where i live and it’s awful)
- The temperature is not always hot, and the beach isn’t around every corner. Especially where i’ve been- the temperatures can be humid, moody and irregular. The weather reports are never taken seriously.
- Whilst being a highly multicultural continent- Australia is still racist. It is not as laid back as most people perceive it.
- It is not like USA. This needs to be emphasised. I thought Australia was just like USA and then when i went to USA it was… intimidating. USA is huge, it is like one big city, even the ‘country side’ is bigger then most would think. In Australia there are many nooks and crannies where there is literally just dirt for miles. Or roads. Nothing else.
- Most words you spell with ‘ize’, we spell with ‘ise’. E.g emphasise, categorise.
- It has two World Wonders currently: The Sydney Opera House and The Sydney Bridge
- We’re not really good at any sport except Cricket? We love Cricket for some reason
- We have a sport called AFL. Australian Football League. It’s just like NFL except there’s no tackling. Lame.
- New Zealand is the equivalent to Australia as Canada is to the US.
- It is one of the smallest continents in the world- which includes Main land Australia, Tasmania, New Guinea as well as many other neighbouring islands!
- Australia has six states (five in the mainland, Tasmania counting as the sixth)
- 88 Random fun Facts about Australia
- Australian currency is called dollars as well, and it’s made out of plastic. Therefore it is almost entirely impossible to counterfeit.
- The Australian Dollar is surprisingly strong
- Everything in Australia is expensive. People say England is expensive but after visiting London, i can honestly say that Australia and England both have the same price for clothing and such. Everything is super expensive. Therefore, if you live in Australia you’re probably at least a tiny bit well off
- Australia does not have a lot of homeless people or poverty, not compared to America at least
- Some people you probably didn’t know were Australian
- Australia actually took the land from the Aboriginals and Indigenous People, led by Arthur Phillip (who was from Britain)
- The ‘Stolen Generation’ was a movement that was then led in 1909 till 1969. In which the English came and stole indigenous children from their homes to put them into schools were they would learn how to be white. These children were abused physically, mentally, emotionally and sexually and a lot of families were damaged due to this. Even today.
- In 2012, former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd issued an apology to all those that were part of The Stolen Generation.
- In 1915, Australia fought in Gallipoli. And lost. Many soldiers were killed in battle- it was one of Australia’s greatest defeats. This War is still remembered, even today in Australia, it’s a great day of respect.
- The Gold Rush was where pretty much everyone went gold mining and it was extremely dangerous being around that much coal and a lot of people died but a lot of gold was also found. Which apparently made the death toll okay?
- This is pretty much all that you learn in Australian Schools about Australian History in 12 years of schooling.
- Everyone, or at least most people in Australia, are politically aware, especially nowadays
- We do not have a President. We have a Prime Minister. What’s the difference?
- Our current Prime Minister is Tony Abbott. Who 98% of people hate because of his opinions on sexuality, women and people of colour as well as the carbon tax.
- We had our first Female Prime Minister ever just a few years ago who was named Julia Gillard. Who you might remember tripped over when she visited India
- We have two major political parties- The House of Representatives (green) and the Senate (red)
SO YOU’RE MAKING YOUR RP BASED IN AUSTRALIA?
- The ever helpful wikipedia page which should include EVERYTHING you’d need to know before opening
- We have more cities then just Melbourne and Sydney.
- In fact here are the top 100 best towns in Australia!
- The Australian Calendar and dates to remember!
- The seasons go like this: December, January, February (summer). March, April, May (autumn). June, July, August (winter), September, October, November (spring)
- Things you probably don’t think are (or hope aren’t) stereotypes about Australia
- The school year goes a bit like this-
Starts: first week of February, goes for 10 weeks. Two week break. That is one term.
After two week term: another 10 weeks, or 8 weeks if you’re in year 11 or 12. Then another break, 2-4 weeks long. This concludes semester one.
After a fortnight/ month according to which year you’re in at school, it is then the start of a new semester. Which starts about mid July and is exactly the same as above. Two semester equal one year of school. Done and done
- Schooling is a bit like this (not so different from US schooling!): preschool, kindergarten, year 1, year 2, year 3, year 4, year 5 (all counted as primary school). Year 6, year 7, year 8 (all counted as middle school). Year 9, year 10, (high school) year 11, and then year 12 (college). Then you can choose to go to university or yadda yadda.
- 100 things you can only do in Australia!
SO YOU’RE MAKING AN AUSTRALIAN CHARACTER?
- 15 tips on what every Australian does/ knows
- A list of perfectly useable famous Australian FCs!
- Australian stereotypes you should probably avoid
Periodically, I come across folks in writing and roleplay that have their character’s career set as a mortician. Without reading anything else in their bio, I already know they probably got a lot of what goes into the job wrong based on the word “mortician” alone. ‘But it’s just roleplay it’s meant to be fun, not serious.' You're also the same jerk that touts yourself to friends as a writer, so write RIGHT, god bammit.
"Morticians," as the outdated term is, are actually called funeral directors. If you didn’t know that, yet want to have a character that works in death care, then you need this guide.
My biggest beef is with people romanticizing this field of work as “deep or edgy.” If you think using a long vacuum needle to suck the remaining feces (that’s literal SHIT) and urine from a body through a hole in the abdomen is in any way “edgy,” you don’t need to be writing a funeral director.
In this guide I will be going over:
- Myths and facts about death care
- How to get into mortuary school in the US
- Tools of the trade
- Embalming (Some graphic preparation gifs included!)
- Prepping a body for viewing
- Occupational hazards and risks
- The office side of thingsTrigger warnings include:DEATH, GORE, BLOOD, VISUAL IMAGERY OF DEATH