How is setting different from world building? What do you put on the page and what should you leave out? How much detail is too much detail? And how do you keep your setting active in your story? Robert gives great practical ways to evaluate your style of writing setting, and how to make it better!
What is trouble? How does it contribute to both character and plot arcs? How do you have to pay off trouble? And do you have to get it into every scene? We enjoy making a character struggle with a speeding ticket, and talk about how it can contribute to hooks both between chapters and books.
At what point does a character or place earn a name? How do naming and significance relate? And how do you keep nameless characters descriptors from becoming boring or repetitive? And what about real world places? Is there such thing as a short cut? And finally we commiserate about the difficulty of naming characters. We all just want them to sound awesome!
How do you define literary fiction? And is there a value judgment between literary and genre? Is literary just a feeling or can we measure it? And how can you make your own novel literary? Want to pick up a literary book – we’ve got plenty of examples for you to choose from!
What is the difference between a cliffhanger, an end hook, and an ambiguous ending? And what about cliffhangers within books versus at the end? How can you avoid cliffhangers within a series? And what does the reader actually want at the end of the book, story, or part in a serial?
What makes a fantasy a fantasy? Can you combine fantasy with other genres? What are the main things that go into a fantasy novel? And what are reader expectations of your world and characters? And what are some pitfalls you need to avoid as a fantasy writer?