Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
×

:iconmakingfunofstuff: More from MakingFunOfStuff


Featured in Collections

All about Writing by NightBloom-chan

rants by AwesomeHellee9


More from DeviantArt



Details

Submitted on
September 18, 2012
File Size
5.8 KB
Submitted with
Sta.sh
Link
Thumb

Stats

Views
15,242 (3 today)
Favourites
616 (who?)
Comments
420
×
CHARACTERS:

Crazy, psychopathic, murderer ladies

Sexy, butt-kicking girls

Crazy/random/hyper self-inserts

Depressed emo/goth/always-dresses-in-black types

Angsty/moody/hot teenagers

The brown-haired girl with no personality

The mean, popular, snobby girl

Unreasonably cruel bullies out to make life harder for the main character

The best friend (if they were a good character who *happened* to be a best friend they wouldn't have to be described as this)


Fun fact: Making victim OCs is cliche
Another fun fact: how someone dresses is NOT their personality
Yet another fun fact: People who claim to be random really are not and they know it.
Super bonus fun fact: A character's breast size need NEVER be stated. The end.

Super de duper bonus fun fact: Please, spare us the paragraphs on what the character looks like. It is a story, not a fashion show. A few sentences with mentions of hair color or other select features you find necessary to point out(KEYWORD: NECESSARY) are perfect. After all, how many paragraphs did JK Rowling describe Harry in? And yet we all know what he looks like... Plus, there are always these things called *pictures* you can take advantage of! especially on this fine art site ;)

Super de duper bonus fun fact part 2: When you're describing a character (or explaining a background, etc.) you don't have to do it all at once. Pace it reasonably throughout the story or it will become too overwhelming for the reader. Think of creative ways that make describing things seem more necessary. Example: She pulled out a piece of her curly orange hair.


BACKGROUNDS:

Turned crazy from being abused

Turned depressed from being abused

Turned anything from being abused

Family was murdered

Anything to do with a fire or a car crash

Anything that was invented for the purpose of making the audience feel bad for them, just to get their family out of the way or just for the sake of being dramatic/emotional.



PLOTS:

Over-dramatic/emotional scenarios specifically designed for "fluff" (aka unbearable corny-ness that you will someday wake up and realize you feel like complete fool for writing)

Making it up as you go (aka no plot)

Romance/romance related

Fun fact: Dramatic scenes do require more skill to write than casual scenes and most of the times less is more. If you base a whole story on the most dramatic/emotional things you can think of you WILL regret it.
I repeat, less is more (I don't necessarily mean less dramatic scenes, but also less drama IN the scenes too. The less drama, the more surprised we'll be when your character pours out their heart or whatever, so save the drama for when it's really important).

Another fun fact: There is this come in handy-ish thing called suspense. Drama is the anti-suspense. Create a suspense that the drama can have fun destroying, because drama without suspense is dead. It needs something to feed on.
I know you're dying to get to the part where your character is sobbing their heart out, but let the readers get to know them first, or they won't care as much (if at all...).
In most cases the only way for us to get to fully know them is through light-hearted, casual, every-day scenes and situations (sometimes far more than just the dramatic ones). It's up to you to make THOSE interesting too, you know.


(Also consider whether the sobbing their heart out part is too corny or not. A lot of the times it really is. Be careful).

Example of over-dramatic/over-used scenario (a short and undetailed one to be precise): Your character is completely distraught and broken. They sit in a corner with their arms around their knees sobbing. Then their boyfriend comes up and comforts them.

If you have an emotional/dramatic scene like this think very carefully: Is this the kind of thing I want my grandchildren to see in years to come or is it something I'm going to want to burn in humiliation?

Yet one more fun fact: Stories don't HAVE to have romance in them *shockety shock shock*

The last fun fact: Don't look up to animes when you write. Things that pass in anime don't always in literature. They're all full of Mary Sues for one.

THINGS THAT PEOPLE THINK ARE "RANDOM"

Llama  

Pie

Ninja

Saying "I like *insert type of cute food/animal/object here*"

Barfing rainbows

Basically anything else you got from internet memes or fads


OTHER

Lyrics/links to songs (sorry, but music is personal and no one is going to think of it the way you do. Plus, adding lyrics that you didn't write in the middle of a story is unprofessional)

Rewriting a story just to add a love interest
(anyone who writes down scenes of a movie word for word frankly has no life)

Sex, drugs, alcohol, racial issues (basically anything you can report someone on clubpenguin for talking about)

Fun fact: The more swearing in your writing the more immature it sounds. It's a scientific fact.
(Granted, it could be realistic if it's the way of a certain culture etc., but I think it's safe to say: leave that to those who know what they're doing).



EDIT:

Please, read my new post: How Not to Tell a Story

makingfunofstuff.deviantart.co…
WARNING: DO NOT READ THIS IF YOU GET OFFENDED OR INSULTED EASILY. THIS LIST IS FOR THE BRAVE AND HONORABLE.

Clarification: I am not saying that all these things are necessarily BAD. I am saying they are cliche and can usually be associated with unprofessional/amateur/inexperienced beginners.
I am not saying that none of these can sometimes be UNcliche when handled with care. Many good stories do involve car crashes or fires after all.
This is simply a list of cliches I put together of things that I have honestly encountered at least eighty million times each. Make of it what you will.

My take on Mary Sue [link]

A deviation I made as an example of one of the cliche stereotypes on this list:
[link]

And here's a video I highly recommend for people who write about romance.... [link] (I highly recommend a lot of their videos actually. They're worth taking a look at, especially the ones about relationships!!).
Add a Comment:
 
:iconweidenlied:
Weidenlied Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2014
Hmm... may I ask you a question? I read a few (not all of them, but I might get around to it) of your articles, and I think you raise a lot of valid points. While I do occasionally enjoy stories with fluff or not much going on plotwise and with Mary-Sue character types, when I myself write I try to avoid it. So, here's the thing.
I'm currently working on a story of a girl who is forced out of her normal (-ish) life and has to follow an older alien around (not her love interest, ew) lest she goes crazy. Now, I try to make her reactions seem "believable", so at first I had her be intimidated and feeling lonely, mostly because the alien needed to learn a thing or two about humans, and I will readily admit that after four chapters I used the cliché scene you listed and made her hide in a corner and crying because she felt alone and terrified. Now, I need a way for her to feel better, to make her see some sort of silver lining to all of the horror that became her life, and was thinking about meeting a little girl that needed her help to get her to snap out of it. Wat do you think about this approach? You know, to give her something else to focus on for a while and then deal with by talking it out with the alien.
Reply
:iconearthwasim:
earthwasim Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2014
thank you  so much! i have only just really got into DA, and the moment I found your Literature critiques I had to read them from top to bottom :3 really helpful to set me on the right track with my own writing ideas and I agree with what you say, stories nowadays (although definitely not all of them)  have a tangible, repetitive pattern and several issues with the structure and charácter constructs.

Your one about Love in YA is also very, very useful and helpful. All good constructive tips to keep in mind.
  
Reply
:iconmorakke:
morakke Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2014
I read a creepypasta called 'The Undertaker', where the main character is crazy, but not because of abuse. No spoilers.
Reply
:iconmstalksalot65:
MsTalksALot65 Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2014
I just noticed in some stories that I have read in dA, y'know the random ones you speak of, most of the authors usually have some kind of pattern when will the 'random characters will blurt out something.

Just saying.

By the way, good job on stating out your opinions.
Reply
:iconseli-book:
SELI-book Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Somebody (not me, not talented enough) should write a story where the nerd/geek is the antagonist because she thinks she's so cool 'cause she's smart and likes Doctor Who, Firefly, Sherlock, (list any other fandoms you're in here) :)
Reply
:iconode-to-pizza:
ode-to-pizza Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2014
Genuis! It would ring true. Most nerds are utter snobs at my school, talking about the 'arrogant' jock who is really kind and humble just because sterotypes...
Reply
:iconseli-book:
SELI-book Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Yeah. Me included, a lot of geeks and nerds at our school are really quite rude to the stereotypical 'popular' people, even though (as I found out a little while ago) they are actually nice people.
Reply
:iconmakingfunofstuff:
MakingFunOfStuff Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2014
LOL, that would be epic.
Reply
:iconsmileykaya:
smileykaya Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2014  Student Filmographer
FINALLY! Someone who recognises that love interests aren't always necessary! Also, you share a hate with Nostalgia critic, he sees 'The bully' as one of the worst clichés of all time. :)
Reply
:iconmakingfunofstuff:
MakingFunOfStuff Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2014
Does he? He sounds like a wise man.
Reply
Add a Comment: