I want to talk about strong female characters in dystopian worlds, but right off the bat, I’m going to be difficult and say, “Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. What do we mean by strong exactly?”
The main challenge in writing multiple points of view is helping the reader keep everybody sorted out.
It isn’t easy to tackle tension when writing a story, but keeping these things in mind can point you in the right direction.
What makes a villain a villain? I’ve always been a fascinated—and a little bit terrified—of villains, especially in fairytales. As a child, I couldn’t get enough of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs even if the old witch sent me diving into our couch cushions to hide my eyes.
A screenplay is a blueprint for a story to be carried out in another medium, by a bunch of other artists. A novel is a finished work, and it’s all yours.
When I published my first novel in April, I knew that a) I wanted to go on a book tour, and b) New authors, with a few exceptions, don’t get book tours anymore.
If I were to write this tale, I’d have to research hauntings, of course, and children who grow up with surrogate parents, and anxiety issues and medications. Assuming I’m comfortable gathering this information, there are few things I’ll look at to see if I have the makings of a YA psychological, suspenseful thriller:
We owe the same kind of hilarious grace to our characters and our young readers. We ask so much of them and it’s only right to give them every emotion in equal measure.
“I should start by saying that world building, where I get to create a fictional reality from the ground up, is one of my favorite parts of writing. It’s the foundation of a good story. Of course, you want a plot that keeps readers turning the pages—and amazing, memorable characters as well, but those characters also deserve a fully realized world to play around in.”
Patricia Hruby Powell danced throughout the Americas and Europe with her dance company, One Plus One, before becoming a writer of children’s books. She is the author of Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker, an extraordinary portrait of the passionate performer and civil rights advocate Josephine Baker written in exuberant verse. She lives in Champaign, Illinois. You can visit her online at talesforallages.com.