Character Forge: How Leeka created Victor and Alina in “The Mating Run”

Well-written characters are crucial for readers to connect emotionally with a story. A character’s backstory, motives, and personality play a significant role in this connection as readers will either love or hate them. You can’t feel indifferent when characters are crafted with care and attention to detail.

In the new blog series on AlphaNovel called the ‘Character Forge’, we will discuss the process of creating compelling characters. We will explore what distinguishes a great character and how to develop realistic protagonists, villains, friends, and lovers.

For the first episode of ‘Character Forge’, we interviewed Leeka, the author of “The Mating Run” and “Tale As Old As Time“. Leeka is not only a writer, but she also holds a degree in psychology, so understanding human nature – is her professional skill.

During our conversation, we asked Leeka about her process for developing characters in her stories, read it below⭐

Pick two of your favorite characters from your books. How do they stand out from the others?

Alina Mockett

Alina Mockett is the main character of the “Mating Run”. She’s a woman who is indecisive about her ambitions and lacks a clear vision for her life. To have some control over her life, she decided to take part in the Mating Run, where at least one choice would be handed to her on a silver platter.

Alina is an optimistic and energetic person, always seeing the bright side of things, although her best friend Ettie believes it may not always be the best mindset. In general, she displays empathy and friendliness towards those she comes across, and she is always willing to aid or stand up for anyone who treats her with kindness or requires assistance. In games such as the Mating Run, displaying kindness can be both advantageous and disadvantageous to winning, which Alina is bound to experience.

At first glance, Alina Mockett may seem unremarkable, but she has a strong determination to survive when faced with adversity. Being in the presence of her friend Ettie, who possesses both intelligence and beauty, has always made her feel inadequate. When the story begins and the two characters find themselves in conflict, Alina’s jealousy, despite her attempts to suppress it, escalates dramatically. As a result, her inferiority complex and jealousy heavily influence her choices throughout the story, and this is not a beneficial combination.

Victor Craft

Victor Craft is one of the supporting characters of the Mating Run. He’s the son of the Alpha of Springcrest Pack, and is famous for his charm and charisma. While he presents himself as carefree and jovial, there is often a hidden darkness lurking beneath his facade of artificial kindness. Despite his laid-back demeanour, he maintains a constant state of alertness, skilfully manipulating his words to get whatever it is he pleases. His goal is to break free from the life his father has meticulously planned for him, and he is willing to do whatever it takes to achieve it. That’s why he opted to join the Mating Run, even though it goes against the established rules.

Victor Craft displays charm towards those he can benefit from while being openly mocking, loud, and sarcastic towards others. Seeking to avoid the obligations thrust upon him and rebel against the life his father had mapped out, he disregarded the rules and enrolled himself in the Mating Run. He knows very well that his name gives him an advantage in how people treat him, and he is more than willing to take advantage of it and manipulate situations to get what he desires.

In the course of the story, he consistently makes choices that are both questionable and truly terrible – but if we were in his position, we would most likely make the same decisions. Victor Craft, as his name implies, is the most probable character to emerge victorious among all the characters in the story.

“Victor is known for his thoughtful approach to decision-making, unlike Alina, whose choices are primarily influenced by her emotions. While Victor may be considered the smarter of the two, it is Alina’s relatable actions that truly resonate with readers”.

Leeka

What’s the origin story of the character you feel is the most complex one?

The way I initially imagined Victor Craft, in my mind, I did not portray him as an antagonist. I still don’t consider him to be an antagonist. The characters in my novel, ‘The Mating Run’, are designed to act as their own antagonists, mirroring the concept of survival of the fittest. Victor was born out of my desire to create a character that would encapsulate the darkest aspects of mankind, those individuals willing to manipulate and harm others to fulfill their ambitions. While it may not be the conventional choice, could you honestly say you wouldn’t do the same in times of extreme difficulty?

To develop Victor’s character, I immersed myself in numerous survival horror books, including works such as ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding and ‘The Grace Year’ by Kim Liggett. I particularly relished the opportunity to craft a character who defies conventional expectations and isn’t confined to doing only good deeds.

How do you balance the mix of flaws and strengths in a character to create someone who feels real and deeply human?

It may sound cliché, but the characters I write are often a mix of the complex ones I’ve encountered in various forms of media. I tend to dislike reading about characters in books who are overly nice and allow themselves to be taken advantage of. And I absolutely enjoy characters who are not burdened with sad backstories and are purely wicked for the sake of it.

“I believe that some individuals are naturally inclined towards evil, without any external influences leading to their behavior. Additionally, I believe that the people we admire for their kindness and pleasantness are harboring inner frustrations, just waiting for that one trigger that will unleash their true emotions”.

Leeka

Contemplating these two factors during the process of character creation simplifies the task of developing individuals who can exhibit both kindness and cruelty. Allow yourself to showcase the vulnerabilities and weaknesses of your character without fear. Characters become relatable and human through their imperfections. Readers connect more with characters who go through challenges and mess things up, just like they do. In this manner, one can create a more compelling narrative by intertwining a character’s weaknesses with their strengths.

Take Victor Craft, for instance, who is highly manipulative to achieve his desires – he may find it challenging to trust others or accept assistance, as he assumes others share his mindset.

The depth of a character is often revealed through their relationships with others. How do you craft these interactions to reveal more about the character’s nature, fears, desires, and the world they inhabit?

My intention from the beginning was to include four distinct individuals in this story, each having their own unique experiences. It’s a given that in games such as the Mating Run, there will be winners and losers. All of them can’t have positive experiences, especially during games like this where they are at their lowest point. It’s easier for them to fail rather than succeed. They prioritize survival above all else, and their interactions reflect this.

The romantic and dramatic elements of the story typically take a backseat, while the excitement of pursuit takes center stage for my readers. The majority of their interactions are determined by their current position in the game; when they sense they are on the verge of winning, I prompt them to concentrate solely on themselves. And when the character feels like they are about to die, I make them so detestable that even the readers feel frustrated with them.

Every character has a life beyond what is shown on the page. Could you share an aspect or backstory of your character that didn’t make it into the final draft but influences how you think about them?

I didn’t focus too heavily on Victor’s difficulties with his father, as I believe in portraying them through actions rather than explicitly describing them. For Victor, his desire to discover his true self, following years of his father’s constant instructions and guidance, resulted in rebellious behavior. I cannot determine if he does these behaviors because he finds them enjoyable or simply to further frustrate his father.

The continuous demand for exceptional performance and the weight of others’ expectations have a profound influence on his actions. As a result, he tends to go against the established norms, as he is the type of person who would choose to endure extreme difficulties rather than submit to imposed authority.

This is the first article in a series of conversations with AlphaNovel’s authors about the characters from their books. In the next article, we’ll talk not about characters but the art of creating catchy cliffhangers. Each month we’ll invite a new AlphaNovel author to talk about their craft and experience. If you have any suggestions for authors you would like to know more about, please send us an email with your recommendations 🙂

https://blog.alphanovel.io/character-forge-leeka-the-mating-run/

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What Should I Write In The ‘About Yourself’ Section?

Crafting an effective “About Yourself” section in your author’s profile is crucial for making a great impression on your readers. This section provides a unique opportunity to connect with your audience, allowing them to get to know you as a person, not just as a writer.

So perhaps you are confused about what to write in the ‘About yourself section?’ Here are some essential tips and guidelines to consider when writing this section.

1. Be genuine and personable

When writing about yourself, be authentic and open. Share personal stories or experiences that have shaped you as a writer. This helps to establish a more personal connection with your readers.

2. Highlight your expertise and interests

Describe what types of stories inspire you, the genres you typically write in, and any other creative pursuits or hobbies you have. This helps readers understand your background and what they can expect from your work.

3. Keep it concise and engaging

While it’s important to share relevant details about yourself, avoid being overly verbose. It’s best to keep things concise and engaging. Consider using a storytelling approach to draw readers in.

For example:

“From a young age, I knew that words had the power to transport people to new worlds and evoke emotions. As I grew older, my passion for writing evolved into a career, where I’ve had the privilege of crafting compelling narratives and engaging readers through captivating storytelling.”

Remember, the key is to provide a glimpse of your personality and professional expertise without overwhelming the reader with excessive details.

4. Connect with your readers

Encourage interaction by inviting readers to reach out to you with questions or feedback through the comment section. This can help foster a sense of community and engagement around your work.

Great ‘About Yourself’ section examples from the AlphaNovel authors

5. Update periodically

As your writing career evolves, so too will your personal story. Be sure to revisit and update your “About Yourself” section periodically to reflect any changes or new developments in your life and writing journey.

By following these tips, you can create an “About Yourself” section that effectively introduces you to your readers and sets a welcoming tone for your author profile. Always remember that the ultimate goal is to establish a genuine connection with your audience and showcase the unique aspects of your writing persona 💜

https://blog.alphanovel.io/what-should-i-write-in-the-about-yourself-section/

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Inside the Mind of Eliza Selmer: An Exclusive Interview with AlphaNovel Star Author

AlphaNovel is launching a series of interviews with our most successful writers. In this series we’re going to talk about their professional journeys, sources of inspiration and, of course, the business-side of building a career as a writer.

The heroine of our first interview is AlphaNovel author Eliza Selmer. Eliza resides along the East Coast in a small tourist town called Myrtle Beach. She has been writing now for about 2 years and has managed to complete 15 books, most of which can be found on online reading platforms.

Elize wrote her first book at 14, something about creating her own worlds has always spoken to her and pushed her to want to share those worlds and the people that reside within them with others. Though fantasy is and always will be her first love, she has written multiple paranormal romance stories filled with action, conspiracy, and steam.

Now, let’s explore the questions that delve deeper into the mind of Eliza Selmar.

Q: What was your writing process like for “Forced To Be His Bride? Fated To Be His Mate”? Did you follow a specific routine or have any unique techniques?

A: When it comes to writing a book, I generally go in with an idea of how I want the story to go. It was the same with “Forced To Be His Bride”. I knew I wanted to write a book about two individuals meeting under bad circumstances and then realizing they were always meant to be. As for techniques, my only technique is to see where the story goes😃

Q: Were there any specific research methods or resources that you found particularly helpful while writing “Forced To Be His Bride. Fated To Be His Mate”?

A: There wasn’t. When it comes to writing, I’m a go with the flow type of person, and I just hope for the best.

Q: How did you handle any challenges or writer’s block during the writing process?

A: I usually write more than one book at a time. So, when I would hit a block I would switch to another story for the time being until I could figure out where I wanted to go with my next chapter/chapters of Forced To Be His Bride.

Q: Are there any specific strategies that you believe contributed to the success of your best-selling book?

A: I think the best strategy is knowing what the readers look for in a book and applying it. When I first started, I bombed, truly not going to lie. So, after that, I played around with ideas and concepts until I found what readers were drawn to.

Q: What have been some of the highlights of your journey as an AlphaNovel author?

A: Two of the biggest highlights are how amazing AlphaNovel editors have been. The second is how vocal the reader base is. If only all of you knew huge encouraging your comments have been to me.

Q: Have you collaborated with other authors on AlphaNovel? If so, what was that experience like?

A: I haven’t, but I’m not opposed to doing so in the future.

Q: Can you share a fun or memorable moment from your journey as an author?

A: Honestly, writing the stories and seeing them come to life is the best part of being an author. Not to mention, seeing readers truly become invested in the stories and characters. That is the most memorable part of doing all this and putting my work into the world.

Eliza Selmer’s stories have had a significant influence on the world of writing. We look forward to immersing ourselves in her future works and experiencing more of her storytelling.

This is the first interview in a series of conversations with AlphaNovel’s star authors. Each month, we will be featuring the most popular, productive, and unique writers whose work is available in our app. If you have any suggestions for authors you would like to read, please send us an email with your recommendations 🙂

https://blog.alphanovel.io/inside-the-mind-of-eliza-selmer-an-exclusive-interview-with-alphanovel-star-author/

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AlphaNovel is looking for Spanish Authors!

Hola, dear authors! AlphaNovel introduced its Spanish vertical last year, and now we’re gearing up to give it a significant boost. Here’s why this should catch your interest.

With over 500 million Spanish speakers worldwide, our goal is to reach them all and convert them into avid readers of your novels on the AlphaNovel app. Join us on this exciting journey.

Why should you do that?

  • Since the launch of the Spanish vertical, our reader base has grown to tens of thousands of people who are eager to dive into new content and explore fresh stories!
  • Your book has more chances of being discovered since the competition for promotion slots in the app is less than for English novels.
  • Our creative laboratory is ramping up marketing efforts for Spanish books, increasing the likelihood of your book being promoted across our channels.

How can you apply and what should you know?

  • If you already have a book in Spanish, simply visit your writer’s profile and apply for a contract for your novel. If you don’t have one yet, you can translate it using online tools and then have a native speaker proofread the novel.
  • For now, Monthly Attendance Bonus is not available for books written in Spanish;
  • All other bonuses and conditions remain the same as for English books.

If you are eager to showcase your novel written in Spanish on AlphaNovel – this is your chance to shine, don’t hesitate and submit it today! We can’t wait to read what you have to share with the world.

https://blog.alphanovel.io/alphanovel-is-looking-for-spanish-authors/

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Building Suspense in Billionaire or CEO narratives

Have you ever pondered the question: “How can I establish a sense of suspense and captivate my readers in billionaire narratives or billionaire romance stories? Ensuring that my readers are captivated and are on the edge of their seats eagerly anticipating what will unfold from the very beginning until the very end”. Rest assured, we have the perfect solution for you.

Here, we will look at ways to create excitement in stories and build suspense in stories involving billionaire or CEO characters. We’ll give easy-to-understand tips and clear detailed explanations on how to do this effectively.

1. Introduce a mysterious past

One effective way to build suspense in billionaire or CEO romance stories is to give the main character a mysterious past. Unveiling fragments of their history throughout the narrative will create intrigue and keep readers engrossed adding depth and complexity to their portrayal.

Remember, in storytelling, a character’s warmth or coldness often stems from their internal struggles, past experiences, and hidden secrets. Let’s explore how a hidden secret or traumatic event could impact the warmth or coldness of a character, using an example for illustration.

Effect on Coldness

If a character’s hidden secret or traumatic event fundamentally alters their worldview, it may lead to a more guarded and cold demeanor. For example, a billionaire protagonist who discovers a betrayal by a trusted ally may become more distant and distrustful, leading to a colder overall portrayal as they struggle to come to terms with the betrayal and its impact on their life and business.

Example

In the TV series “Billions” the character Bobby Axelrod, a billionaire hedge fund manager, is initially portrayed as shrewd and calculating, with a seemingly warm exterior. However, as the series progresses, revelations about his past and personal betrayals lead to a gradual hardening of his character, resulting in a colder and more guarded portrayal. His past experiences and hidden secrets contribute to his increasingly ruthless and cold behavior.

Bobby Axelrod, “Billions”

Whether the revelation softens or hardens the character, it provides an opportunity for readers to delve into the intricacies of the protagonist’s psyche, creating a compelling and multi-dimensional narrative.

2. Develop complex characters

Building suspense requires well-developed and multifaceted characters. Delve into their motivations, desires, and fears, going beyond their wealth or status. Create internal conflicts that challenge their choices and relationships, keeping readers guessing about their true intentions. By making their personalities nuanced, readers will be invested in their journey and eager to uncover their true selves.

One way of developing complex characters is to challenge their choices and relationships. By introducing conflicting interests, rivalries, or unexpected alliances, you create a web of intrigue and uncertainty. The protagonist may be torn between their love interest and a business deal that could make or break their success. This conflict forces them to make difficult choices that not only impact their personal relationships but also keep readers on the edge of their seats, eager to uncover the outcome.

NB: ‘By creating obstacles that seem unconquerable, you generate suspense and keep readers invested in the outcome.’

Furthermore, giving characters nuanced personalities adds layers to their development. They can have strengths and flaws, vulnerabilities and defenses, making them relatable and human. The billionaire or CEO character may appear cold and unfeeling on the surface, but beneath that facade, they may harbor deep-seated insecurities or a fear of being vulnerable. By gradually revealing these layers, readers become emotionally invested in their journey and are eager to witness their growth and transformation.

3. Employ a slow-burn romance

A slow-burn romance builds anticipation and suspense as the relationship between the billionaire or CEO character and their love interest unfolds gradually. By teasing readers with fleeting moments, stolen glances, and unresolved tension, you can create a magnetic pull that keeps them eagerly turning the pages. The slow development of the romance will heighten readers’ desire to see the characters finally come together.

NB: As the story progresses, there is an opportunity to cultivate a gradual and intense romantic connection between the characters. However, in the initial chapters, focus on captivating the readers by dropping hints of a potential romance between the main characters. This will keep the readers engaged and eager to see how their relationship progresses over time.

4. Incorporate atmospheric settings

The setting plays a crucial role in building suspense. Choose opulent and extravagant locations, such as luxurious mansions, high-end hotels, or exclusive parties, to emphasize the billionaire or CEO lifestyle. Use vivid descriptions to transport readers into these atmospheric settings, heightening the anticipation and creating an immersive experience.

Additionally, atmospheric settings can create a sense of isolation or confinement, amplifying the tension. A remote private island, a secluded mansion nestled in the mountains, or a high-security underground bunker all provide a sense of seclusion and create a feeling of being trapped or cut off from the outside world. This isolation intensifies the stakes and leaves readers wondering what dangers or secrets lie in wait.

Furthermore, incorporating atmospheric elements such as inclement weather, eerie sounds, or unusual occurrences adds another layer of suspense. A thunderstorm raging outside the protagonist’s lavish estate, strange noises echoing through the halls, or unexplained phenomena heighten the sense of unease and keep readers guessing about what will happen next.

5. Include elements of danger or mystery

Introducing elements of danger or mystery adds an extra layer of suspense. This could involve a threat to the protagonist’s life, a business deal with high stakes, or a mysterious stranger who seems to know more than they should. These elements will keep readers hooked and eager to discover the resolution of the danger or mystery.

In conclusion, creating suspense in romance stories involving billionaire or CEO characters requires careful planning and execution. By employing techniques such as introducing a mysterious past, developing complex characters, utilizing unexpected twists, and incorporating atmospheric settings, you can keep readers engaged and eager to uncover the story.

We eagerly await the opportunity to dive into the worlds you create, eager to see how you will mesmerize your readers with your storytelling prowess🥰.

https://blog.alphanovel.io/building-suspense-in-billionaire-or-ceo-narratives/

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How To Deal with Parting Thoughts: Tips From AlphaNovel

Parting ways with a story or its characters can be a challenging experience for any writer. The emotional attachment to the world and the people created through writing can often hinder them from progressing to new ideas and projects. However, it’s essential to learn how to deal with these parting thoughts in a healthy and productive manner. 

Here, we’ve compiled some strategies to help writers guide this process and move forward with their creative journey:

1. Acknowledge and Accept Emotions

It’s important for writers to recognize and accept the emotions that come with parting from a story or its characters.

Allowing yourself to experience these emotions is crucial because it helps you progress. By acknowledging your feelings, you are giving yourself the opportunity to reflect, learn, and grow from the experience. Instead of suppressing or ignoring these emotions, it’s healthier to give yourself permission to feel them and understand why they are present. So, whether it’s nostalgia, reluctance, or even sadness, permitting oneself to experience these emotions is the first step in dealing with them.

2. Closure Rituals

Writing a story can be an intense and emotional journey, filled with ups and downs as we delve into the lives of our characters and create intricate narratives. However, just as in real life, every story must come to an end. In order to find emotional closure and transition smoothly into new writing projects, it can be helpful to engage in closure rituals. These rituals provide a symbolic way of saying goodbye to the world we’ve created and the characters we’ve grown to love.

Here is some examples to consider:

Sharing with Trusted Friends or Fellow Writers. Sharing your story with trusted friends or fellow writers can be a powerful way to find closure. By reading your work aloud or discussing it with others, you invite external perspectives and gain a sense of validation for your efforts. This can also provide an opportunity for closure through feedback and discussions, allowing you to tie up loose ends and gain a fresh perspective on your work.

Example: Organize a small gathering (Could be a group chat) with fellow writers or close friends, where you can share excerpts from your story and engage in meaningful discussions. This shared experience will help you bid farewell to your story while celebrating the creative process.

Closure Rituals could also involve writing a farewell letter to the characters, or, creating a piece of art related to the story.

So consider creating closure rituals to symbolize the end of this chapter in your writing.

3. Engage in New Creative Activities

To overcome the hesitation of letting go, you can immerse yourself in new creative activities. Exploring different writing prompts, experimenting with new genres, or engaging in unrelated artistic pursuits can help shift focus away from the previous work. By embracing new challenges and exploring uncharted territories, you can open yourself up to fresh inspiration and creative growth.

Here are a few examples of how writers can engage in new creative activities to overcome the hesitation of letting go:

Exploring Different Writing Prompts:

One effective way to transition from a completed work is to explore different writing prompts. These prompts can be found in writing books, or even by creating your own. By challenging yourself to write in response to these prompts, you can discover new themes, characters, and storylines that provoke your imagination. This exploration allows you to detach from your previous work and embrace the excitement of new possibilities.

Example: If you’ve just finished writing a dark and intense mystery novel, try a writing prompt that focuses on humor or romance. This shift in tone and genre can help you break away from the previous work’s mood and immerse yourself in a fresh creative experience.

Engaging in Unrelated Artistic Pursuits:

Sometimes, the best way to overcome hesitation and find closure is to immerse yourself in unrelated artistic pursuits. Engaging in activities such as painting, photography, music, or even dance can provide a new outlet for creativity. These pursuits allow you to explore different forms of expression and tap into your artistic instincts from a different angle.

Example: If you’ve just completed a novel, consider taking up painting as a new artistic outlet. Experiment with colors, shapes, and textures as you create visual representations of emotions or scenes from your story. This new artistic endeavor can provide a refreshing change of pace and help you release any lingering attachment to your previous work.

Set Clear Goals for Future Projects:

Setting clear goals and objectives for new writing endeavors can be a motivating factor in moving forward. Whether it’s outlining a new story, setting deadlines, or planning a writing schedule, having a clear direction can help writers transition from the old to the new.

Embrace the Learning Experience:

Recognize that every story and character created is part of the writer’s learning journey. Embrace the lessons learned from the past work and carry them forward into future projects.

Note that, it’s important for you to understand that parting thoughts are a natural aspect of the creative process, as this article aims more to provide assistance in overcoming parting thoughts and reigniting your creative flow. 

We hope that the suggestions mentioned here can help you move forward and inspire you to produce more exceptional works. We look forward to witnessing your future creations as you continue to develop your writing journey 📖🖋

https://blog.alphanovel.io/how-to-deal-with-parting-thoughts-tips-from-alphanovel/

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Trigger warnings: when the readers should be informed

Ever picked up a book and found yourself suddenly face-to-face with heavy stuff that left you feeling uneasy? That’s where trigger warnings swoop in like literary superheroes, giving you a heads-up about potentially tough content. While there is a fat list of trigger warnings, here are the most common and examples of their implementations:

1. Graphic Violence

This chapter contains graphic violence, including detailed descriptions of intense physical harm. Reader discretion is advised.

2. Sexual Assault or Abuse

This section discusses non-consensual sexual acts. Take care while reading.

4. Mental Health Challenges

The following chapters delve into mental health challenges, portraying characters navigating psychological struggles.

5. Substance Abuse

This section contains depictions of drug and alcohol abuse. Reader discretion is advised.

6. Explicit Sexual Content

Detailed descriptions of sexual acts is included in this chapter. Reader discretion is recommended.

7. Racism or Discrimination

This chapter addresses racial and discriminatory themes. Please be aware of potential emotional impact.

8. Child Abuse

This section includes depictions of harm or neglect towards children. Approach with sensitivity.

Why should authors use trigger warnings?

Reader Well-being

Each reader has their own sensitive spot, a personal ‘taboo.’ Picture speeding towards your destination, full of excitement, only to encounter a roadblock after investing hours – all because a warning sign that could have guided you onto a smoother path wasn’t put up.

It could potentially ruin your day. 

Trigger warnings are there to say, “Hey, look out! We’re about to talk about something heavy.”

Empathy and Understanding

Authors who use trigger warnings are basically saying, “I get it, readers. Let’s go on this journey together, and I want you to feel safe.” It’s like having a storyteller who cares about your feelings and wants you to enjoy the ride without unexpected bumps.

Informed Choices

Ever wish you had a spoiler alert for your emotions? Trigger warnings do just that! They give you a sneak peek so you can decide if you’re up for the emotional rollercoaster or if you need to take a breather.

Trauma Sensitivity

Acknowledging the potential triggering effect certain content may have on individuals with past traumatic experiences, provides a more compassionate reading experience for any such individuals. They’re like a virtual nod saying, “We know this might hit close to home, so you can decide if you’re ready for it.”

Taking The State Of Mind Into Consideration

People have different reactions to the books they read, and as such, there will be several reactions to triggers. Telling the readers what they’re getting into beforehand helps give a kickstart into preparing, all the while maintaining the safe place that they have found in the books they read.

Controversies!

Not everyone is on board with trigger warnings. Some worry about how it might take away from the surprise of the story, give away too much, desensitization, the balance between over protection and consideration, the artistic freedom of writers to truly express themselves, and the reaction of readers to consistent warnings across every book.

It is important to note that trigger warnings are not spoilers, and they do not share the twists or turns of events in the story. More importantly,  the benefits of promoting mental well-being and inclusivity of readers far outweigh these concerns.

How To Implement?

Authors can seamlessly integrate trigger warnings into their work by placing them at the beginning of chapters or sections containing potentially sensitive content. This ensures readers are adequately prepared without revealing specific plot details.

Conclusion

If you strongly believe a warning could save your readers from stress or harm, go for it. Books are every reader’s safe space. Help them feel that way. Walk them through it, if need be.

There’s nothing as jarring as getting ejected from a book you love because you can’t seem to get over a scene that’s too much for you to handle or reading things that cannot be unseen.

https://blog.alphanovel.io/trigger-warnings-when-the-readers-should-be-informed/

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Contract Review: Understanding the Process of Reviewing Books

When it comes to getting your book published, one crucial step in the process is the contract review. The contract review involves various aspects, such as KYC checks (Know Your Customer) and content review. This guide aims to provide an overview of the contract review process for books, including the importance of clear document information, and content review. Additionally, we will discuss tips on how to pass the book review successfully, with a focus on fast-paced books, cliffhangers, and attractive beginning chapters, which have a higher possibility of passing the review. Let’s dive in!

Verification

Prior to the contract application, you need to verify your identity by uploading the necessary data in your account and submitting the verification request. Please, note that there is a list of data that must be clearly visible on the ID you upload, and it should match with the info you enter in the application as it would be used for contract signing:

  • Full legal name;
  • Date of birth;
  • Citizenship (Name of the country);
  • Document number;
  • Expiration date (if available);
  • Your photo;

The KYC (Know Your Customer) check is a standard procedure to verify the author’s identity and validate the legal ownership of the book. Here’s what you should consider:

a. Verify Documentation: Provide the required documents, such as a valid ID, and any other relevant legal documents. Make sure the copies are legible and meet the submission requirements.

b. Review any licensing agreements: If your book incorporates licensed or copyrighted material, ensure that you have valid and legal agreements in place, permitting the use of such content.

Please note: We have zero tolerance for plagiarism.

Content Review

Content review is a crucial aspect of the contract review process. It involves assessing the book’s content, writing style, marketability, and potential for success. Here are some tips to help you pass the content review successfully:

1. Engaging and fast-paced narrative

Consider writing a book that captivates readers with a fast-paced, compelling narrative. This involves focusing on creating tension, conflict, and constant progression of the story. Avoid excessive background information or slow narrative pacing that may lose readers’ interest.

2. Well-developed characters

Create characters that are relatable, three-dimensional, and have clear motivations. Readers should connect with and become emotionally invested in your characters, driving them to continue reading.

3. Cliffhangers and suspense

Incorporate cliffhangers at the end of chapters or sections to keep readers engaged and eager to continue reading. Utilize suspense and mystery to create anticipation, making readers unable to put the book down.

4. Start with an attractive beginning

The first few chapters of your book play a significant role in capturing readers’ attention. Craft a powerful opening that sets the tone, establishes the conflict, and introduces the main characters effectively.

5. Thorough Editing

Ensure your book is well-edited for grammar, spelling, punctuation, and overall coherence. Mistakes and inconsistencies may negatively impact the review process.

6. Professional Formatting

Professionally present your book. Pay attention to paragraphs, line spacing, chapter breaks, and overall readability.

7. Include a Strong Synopsis

Craft a compelling and concise synopsis that effectively conveys the essence of your book. Highlight its unique selling points and leave the reviewer eager to explore further.

The contract review process plays a pivotal role in determining the fate of your book. By understanding the KYC check and implementing tips for content review, such as focusing on fast-paced storytelling, cliffhangers, and attractive beginnings, you can ensure a smoother contract review experience. Remember to always stay true to your writing style and vision, while also considering reader preferences and market trends.

Good luck! 🍀

https://blog.alphanovel.io/contract-review-understanding-the-process-of-reviewing-books/

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Character Description: Why does the platform require character descriptions?

Character description plays a crucial role in any form of storytelling. While writing a story, creating vivid and compelling characters is essential to engage your audience. By painting a clear picture of your characters’ traits, you can immerse your readers into the story, making them feel more connected and invested in your narrative.

This guide will explore the importance of character description and provide tips on how to effectively portray your characters.

Better understanding of the plot by editors

When editors review manuscripts, having clear details about the characters, especially those with their POV in chapters, helps them gain a better understanding of the story’s structure and flow.

Enhanced narration for audiobooks

For authors who are interested in producing audiobooks, providing details about characters with POV chapters can greatly benefit the narrators and improve the audio experience for listeners. Narrators rely heavily on character descriptions to create distinct voices and personas for each character. The more information they have, the better they can bring the characters to life, enhancing the overall quality of the audiobook.

Marketing and audience connection

Understanding the characters who have their POV in chapters allows authors to craft targeted marketing strategies and connect with specific audience segments. By providing comprehensive descriptions, authors can identify unique selling points for each character, promoting their individual story arcs and attracting readers who resonate with those characters.

Character development and reader engagement

Detailed descriptions and information about characters with POV chapters enable authors to develop multifaceted, relatable characters. This rich character development enhances reader engagement, as audiences connect with and invest in the journeys of these characters. Providing clear details allows readers to form stronger emotional connections, making the reading experience more immersive and enjoyable.

Tips for Effective Character Description:

1. Balance Detail and Imagination

Provide enough descriptive details to help readers or viewers form a clear image of your characters, but also allow room for their own interpretation and imagination.

2. Be Selective

Not every character requires an extensive physical or personality description. Focus on the main characters or those who play crucial roles in your story. This prevents overwhelming your audience with excessive details.

3. Consider the Genre

Adapt your character descriptions to suit the style and tone of your genre. A description for a fantasy novel may differ from that of a crime thriller or a romantic comedy.

In conclusion, providing comprehensive details about characters with their POV in chapters is essential for several reasons. From creating a more compelling and immersive experience for your readers or viewers to facilitating an immersive audiobook experience, these details play a crucial role in various aspects of storytelling, benefiting both the creators and the audience. Utilize the tips and strategies mentioned in this guide to effectively incorporate character description into your writing and captivate your audience.

https://blog.alphanovel.io/character-description-why-does-the-platform-require-character-descriptions/

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Q&A with content editors. Part 1: Commonly asked questions

We understand that writing can be a difficult and challenging process, and that you may have many questions along the way. That’s why we’ve taken the time to gather some of the most common questions that writers ask, and we’ve provided detailed answers that we hope will be helpful to you. Whether you’re a new writer just starting out, or an experienced author looking for new ideas, we hope you’ll find these answers insightful and inspiring.

Q1: How do I come up with ideas for my story?

Coming up with story ideas can be challenging, but there are several strategies you can try. Consider drawing inspiration from real-life experiences, current events, books, or movies. You can also start by brainstorming and freewriting. 

Brainstorming is when you come up with as many ideas as possible, even if they’re silly or far-fetched. Freewriting is when you write whatever comes to mind without worrying about grammar or sentence structure.

Q2: How do I create interesting characters?

Creating interesting characters is all about giving them depth and complexity. Start by giving them a backstory. What experiences have shaped who they are today? Next, give them flaws and strengths. Characters who are too perfect are uninteresting, so make sure to give them flaws that they struggle with. It’s helpful to provide your characters with internal conflicts that drive their actions and create depth. Additionally, focus on crafting realistic dialogue and allowing your characters to evolve throughout the story.

Q3: How do I develop an engaging plot?

To develop an interesting plot, you need a strong premise, compelling characters, and to maintain a balance between conflict, tension, and resolution. Infuse your story with obstacles, challenges, and dilemmas that push the characters forward.

Create a clear story arc and consider incorporating unexpected twists that keep readers engaged. The conflict should be something that keeps readers turning the pages to find out what happens next. It should have high stakes and feel real to the reader. Remember to avoid excessive exposition and keep the pacing consistent.

Q4: How do I write a strong beginning?

The beginning of your story needs to hook the reader right away. There are a few ways to do this. One way is, to begin with an intriguing or dramatic event, pose a question, or present a conflict that immediately captivates the reader’s attention. 

Another way is to introduce an intriguing character right away. Another option is to start with an intriguing question or mystery that the reader wants to know the answer to. Finally, you can start with a striking setting or description that immerses the reader in the world of the story. Aim to grab the reader’s interest within the first few paragraphs.

Q5: How do I keep readers interested throughout my story?

To keep readers interested throughout your story, maintain a balance between action, suspense, character development, and plot progression. First, you need to make sure that something is always happening. There should be a constant sense of forward momentum while avoiding excessive info-dumping and maintaining a steady pace.

Second, you need to raise the stakes throughout the story. Make sure that the conflict is escalating and the characters are facing bigger challenges. Finally, keep the reader guessing by introducing plot twists and surprises. Create tension and conflict, reveal information gradually, and end chapters with cliffhangers to encourage readers to continue.                    

Q6: How do I write a satisfying ending?

A satisfying ending should feel earned and appropriate for the story. It should also resolve the main conflict and leave the reader feeling satisfied. To achieve this, you need to tie loose ends, resolve conflicts, and address the character arcs. You should also make sure that the ending is consistent with the tone and themes of the story. Finally, a satisfying ending should leave the reader with something to think about, whether it’s a sense of hope, a moral lesson, or a lingering question. 

Q7: How do I write effective dialogue?

Writing effective dialogue requires a few things. First, Make your dialogue sound natural and authentic by paying attention to speech patterns, word choice, and character personalities. Second, it should move the story forward and reveal something about the characters or the situation. Third, it should be concise and to the point. 

The dialogue should reveal the characters’ personalities and motivations, so, use it to advance the plot or reveal information about the characters. Pay attention to each character’s individual voice and style of speaking. Vary the length and structure of the dialogue to keep it interesting and ensure it contributes to the overall story. And finally, don’t forget to add emotion and subtext to the dialogue.  

Q8: How do I avoid writer’s block?

Overcoming writer’s block can be challenging, but there are strategies to help. First, take breaks and engage in activities that inspire you. Second, If you’re stuck on a specific scene or idea, try brainstorming, freewriting, or discussing it with fellow writers. Third, set realistic goals and establish a writing routine. Fourth, read other writers’ work for inspiration. 

Sometimes, simply forcing yourself to write, even if it feels mediocre, can help break through the block. Remember, write even when you don’t feel like writing, because perseverance is key. 

With these tips, you’ll be able to overcome writer’s block and get back to writing.

https://blog.alphanovel.io/qa-with-content-editors-part-1-commonly-asked-questions/

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