Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Writing Basics: Telling v. Showing

You have been working on your story for a while now, and you feel pretty accomplished. However, when you go back and review what you have written, some things don't sound quite right. Perhaps the problem is that you are telling instead of showing.

In this post, we are going to take a cursory look at the difference between telling and showing and discuss why showing is often better.

Monday, September 28, 2015

What Is the Nature of Prophecy in ASOIAF?

From Azor Ahai to the Valonqar, prophecy plays a mighty role in A Song of Ice and Fire. There are also many levels of prophecies in the series -- from ancient prophecies to "dream-like" states where characters envision the present, past, or future.
Maggy the Frog (Maggy the Witch). Image: HBO. I do not own this image.
For this post, I am going to focus on the concept of prophecy in ASOIAF in two specific ways: the nature of truth in relation to prophecy, and the fulfillment of prophecies.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Writing Basics: Differentiating between the Hero, Villain, and Anti-hero Archetypes

In a prior post, I discussed the difference between a protagonist and an antagonist. Now, I want to dig into the distinctions between heroes, villains, and anti-heroes.

Before we continue, let's rehash so we don't get all of these terms confused:

The protagonist is the character who moves the action forward.

The antagonist is the character (or force) who halts or stalls the action.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Writing Basics: Protagonist v. Antagonist

You have probably heard the terms "protagonist" and "antagonist" before, but can you distinguish between the two?

Image: Warner Bros. I do not own this image.

Better question: Do you know the purpose of each?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Three Seasons of Game of Thrones Posts

Image: HBO

To celebrate the beginning of autumn, I am reminding all you lovely readers of BookieBlog's Game of Thrones posts for the past year -- the critical analyses, crackpot fan theories, and re-read walk-throughs.

Check out the titles below! Missed one? Read it now! Already read them all? Pick your favorite one (or two, or three), and start a discussion in the comments! Remember: I respond to all comments, and I love hearing from you all :)

Monday, September 21, 2015

Writing Basics: Internal v. External Conflict

Okay. So you have the exposition of your story down. What is next?

Once you have laid the framework for your story's world (Where is it? Who are your primary characters? etc.), you need to introduce a conflict.

What is conflict, and why do you need it?

Sunday, September 20, 2015

7 Facts You May Not Know about George R. R. Martin

In honor of the author's birthday, here are seven facts you may not know about George R. R. Martin!

(I do not own this photograph.)

Everyone has heard of the HBO epic sensation Game of Thrones, but considerably fewer people have heard of its creator: George R. R. Martin. Martin is well-known in scifi/fantasy circles for his writing prowess and acumen. Here are seven facts you may not know about George R. R. Martin.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Writing Basics: The Six Stages of Plot

It seems like everyone wants to be a writer, doesn't it? He does, she does, I do, and -- chances are -- you do too.

This is a potentially overwhelming realization: If everyone is writing, how can you hope to possibly a) get published and b) get a large enough fan base to continue publishing?

Obviously enough, your first step to becoming a renowned writer with hordes of fans is to actually write something. You may be thinking "Majesta, this is a no-brainer. How else am I supposed become a professional writer?!" Though the idea is a self-explanatory one, there are many aspects of story writing; so many, in fact, that it would be fairly easy for you to overlook an imperative component on your road to success. 

Let's start with the basics of story writing: What is one of the most important aspects of a story? The plot.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Crazy Fan Theory: What If GRRM's ASOIAF World Was the Result of Dan Well's PARTIALS World?

I frequently cover a variety of Game of Thrones fan theories on the blog (like The Great Northern Conspiracy and The Dragon Has Three Heads), but I have never shared any of my own fan theories. So, here you are: What if George R. R. Martin's ASOIAF takes place in the distant future, and is a result of the genetic modification and technology present in Dan Well's Partials Sequence?

Image: Signs. I do not own this image.


Psssst: Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom to watch the book trailer for Dan Well's Partials!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

How "Try" and "Do Your Best" Are Ruining Your Students' Self Esteem

In elementary, middle, and even high schools, teachers frequently tell their students the following:

"As long as you do your best, you are a winner!"
"The score doesn't matter; do your best!"
"Remember, try to answer each question."
"Try to complete each section to the best of your ability."

or, the ever present comment:

"Try to do your best!"

You may be thinking: "Good for them! Encouraging their students to succeed!" But what if I told you you are wrong?

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Who is the Sailor's Wife?

We are so focused on the primary GoT characters we love -- Jon, Arya, Dany, Tyrion -- that we seem to have forgotten about one potentially important character: The Sailor's Wife.

The Sailor's Wife by Jules-Joseph Lefebvre

Why is the briefly mentioned Sailor's Wife, well, worth mentioning? She may lie at the core of one of our beloved primary character's life stories.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Rereading ASOIAF: The Ebb

In rereading A Song of Ice and Fire, I have noticed an interesting overarching structure: the plot has a distinct ebb and flow, especially when it comes to the primary characters and their relative location to one another.


When the series starts, all of the primary characters (with the exception of Daenerys) are at Winterfell. As the series progresses, these characters separate -- some in pairs or groups, others alone -- and undergo their own separate journeys.

So why does this initial gathering matter?