What makes a story good?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by MeltingRoses, Nov 25, 2010.

  1. MeltingRoses

    MeltingRoses MeltingRoses

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    I recently had an epiphany on what it was that pushes a story passed be ok to being good. The overuse of adjectives seems to be a common mistake up and coming writers, or those who think they're good at writing, use. Bland verbs is the other. If you want to make a story interesting work on interesting verbs instead of overloading it with adjectives to the point that it sounds corny.
    Thoughts and other ideas on what makes a writer good?
     
  2. Bloody Fool

    Bloody Fool New Member

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    Well, the story itself must be interesting. I hate buying a book, reading half of it, then realizing I just bought a book that I more or less already had on my shelf. I am very picky about what I read, and I don't want to be wasting my time with a storyline that's already been dealt with a million times. Every once in a while, I'll come across a book with a plot that's actually pretty unique, consistent, and INTERESTING. Which leads me to say, if you're going to write fiction, and you use a dull, overused and cliche plot, by publishing boring fiction and putting it out there for the world to see you may as well litter on the side of the street.
     
  3. Greybeard

    Greybeard Geezer

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    Compelling characters. The reader must be engaged by characters he finds interesting and with whom he can identify on some level.

    Conflict. The reader must see the characters challenged by circumstances or, better, by other characters. Ideally the characters will be challenged to accomplish things they don't believe they can accomplish, or that they believe are impossible.

    Plot twists. A surprised reader is a happy reader, as long as you convince him that you haven't cheated to get the surprise.

    Characters who change. Nothing is quite so rewarding as watching a character grow from a child into an adult. That's one of the reasons Egwene al'Vere is one of my favourite charactes in WoT: she grows so much and reaches so high in that growth.

    While I agree with your stylistic points, MeltingRoses, I don't think style determines whether a story sells or not. Story and character sell; as long as the writing isn't too bad to read it shouldn't be much of an issue. With very few exceptions, I've never found myself lost in a writer's style, but I've found myself lost in many a good story.
     
  4. Aatell

    Aatell The one who has two minds

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    honestly relation as in ive always wanted to do the same thing well along those lines