Revolutionize Your Writing by Deepening Your Characters

By definition, what is a novel?

At first glance, the answer may seem simple: it’s a prosaic work of fiction that meets a certain word count and is bound up in book form. But if you look into the issue more deeply, you’ll see it’s trickier to explain what makes a novel distinct. Epics, plays, short stories, and poems all represent other forms of literature that existed before the novel was essentially invented by Miguel Cervantes in 1605 with the publication of Don Quixote. When compared with these other forms of literature, what unique qualities does the novel have to lend?deepenyourcharacters

Last semester, I took a college course that explored the attributes of the novel. The more we studied the novel in the course, the clearer it became to me that the novel is distinct for its focus on the inner minds of its characters.

Properly expanding the inner lives of characters can be a difficult skill to master for writers. If we delve into it too much, it’s easy to make our characters seem melodramatic and angsty. So it can be tempting to avoid such a portrayal by describing characters through their actions only. [Read more…]

Profile photo of Josiah DeGraaf
Josiah DeGraaf is a high school English teacher and literature nerd who fell in love with stories when he was young and hasn’t fallen out of love ever since.
He writes because he’s fascinated by human motivations. What causes otherwise-good people to make really terrible decisions in their lives? Why do some people have the strength to withstand temptation when others don’t? How do people respond to periods of intense suffering? What does it mean to be a hero?
These questions drive him as a reader, and they drive him as a writer as well as he takes normal people, puts them in crazy situations (did he mention he writes fantasy?), and then forces them to make difficult choices with their lives.
Someday, Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels with worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as entertaining as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. In the meantime, you can find him writing articles here or short stories at his website (link below) as he works toward achieving these goals.

Kingdom Cinema Q&A

qavideopinterestYou had questions. Now we have answers.

Well, we mostly have answers.

A couple answers may have gone far afield of the original question.

And Daniel may or may not have snuck a couple additional questions in because he was dissatisfied with our original question slate.

Either way, for those of you who wanted to see more of us outside the writing show or wanted to see an extended “credits scene” from us, here’s your chance.

Check out the video below and leave us your thoughts in the comments!

 

Profile photo of Josiah DeGraaf
Josiah DeGraaf is a high school English teacher and literature nerd who fell in love with stories when he was young and hasn’t fallen out of love ever since.
He writes because he’s fascinated by human motivations. What causes otherwise-good people to make really terrible decisions in their lives? Why do some people have the strength to withstand temptation when others don’t? How do people respond to periods of intense suffering? What does it mean to be a hero?
These questions drive him as a reader, and they drive him as a writer as well as he takes normal people, puts them in crazy situations (did he mention he writes fantasy?), and then forces them to make difficult choices with their lives.
Someday, Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels with worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as entertaining as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. In the meantime, you can find him writing articles here or short stories at his website (link below) as he works toward achieving these goals.

BONDAGE

By Tessa Just   

Swish, crackle, swish. The sound of straw being moved filled the longhouse. Fifteen-year-old Katrina blinked as a burst of sun lit the gloomy interior. A tall boy grinned down at her through the hole in the roof and teasingly dropped a few strands of straw onto her golden hair.

She glared up at him. “You’d have been sorry if I’d been cooking your meal,” she scolded. “Can’t you give me some warning next time?”bondagess

Lang laughed good-naturedly. “I told you that Miksa and I were replacing the thatch today. You should have chosen to do something outside.” He turned to the boy behind him. “Can you bring up the fresh straw, Miksa?”

“Yes, master.”

Katrina and Lang winced. How they hated that title. The two siblings had offered friendship to Miksa on more than one occasion, but he refused it. Katrina gazed up into Lang’s troubled brown eyes. He leaned down toward her.

“Meet me in our secret place tonight,” he whispered. He glanced over his shoulder. “I need to talk.”

Katrina nodded and returned to her spinning. [Read more…]

Lyric Writing Contest Results!

The lyrics have been written, the contest has been won, and now we are proud to present you with the final results of your efforts!! Tom and Jo recorded all three songs and they are right here for your pleasure! Let us know what you think.

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Also, don’t forget that KP Radio is open for submissions. As always any submission you have should be sent to the Kingdom Pen email: kingdompenmag@gmail.com If you have any questions feel free to ask! We always love hearing from you.

Meet the Kingdom Pen Team

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Some of you may have been following Kingdom Pen for several months, some of you may have been following us for several years, and the majority of you probably fall somewhere in the middle, but either way, you may be wondering who this quasi-elusive KP team is (unless you’ve been stalking our ‘meet the staff’ pages) and may be wondering what all we do here in our various roles at Kingdom Pen.  Well, if you have been asking yourself some of these questions (or even if you haven’t), we met at a staff retreat back in January, and during that time ended up shooting a video about who we are and what all of us do. While Grace unfortunately couldn’t be there, the rest of us are, so if you’re interested in hearing more about us and what we do, make sure to check out the video below!  And we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mXRUuxasoKQ

Profile photo of Josiah DeGraaf
Josiah DeGraaf is a high school English teacher and literature nerd who fell in love with stories when he was young and hasn’t fallen out of love ever since.
He writes because he’s fascinated by human motivations. What causes otherwise-good people to make really terrible decisions in their lives? Why do some people have the strength to withstand temptation when others don’t? How do people respond to periods of intense suffering? What does it mean to be a hero?
These questions drive him as a reader, and they drive him as a writer as well as he takes normal people, puts them in crazy situations (did he mention he writes fantasy?), and then forces them to make difficult choices with their lives.
Someday, Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels with worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as entertaining as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. In the meantime, you can find him writing articles here or short stories at his website (link below) as he works toward achieving these goals.

Win a FREE Book Cover Design!

Hello Kingdom Pen!ElisabethPerryGiveawayPinterest

 

We’re so excited to bring you this wonderful opportunity, courtesy of Perry Elizabeth Design! They have agreed to give away their Basic eBook cover design package! Find out below how to enter the giveaway.

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Perry Elizabeth Design is made-up of a young husband and wife team, Tyler and Perry, who began their business in 2012. If you haven’t checked out their website, you need to right now. They make incredible and affordable designs for writers and novelists just like you!

Not only do they offer book cover designs, but they also offer to format your book for you, while also offering a host of other design services, from web-design to T-shirts. This is the place to go if you want affordable designs.

When it comes to self-publishing, you have to do everything. You have to be your own editor, proof-reader, and designer while also handling promotion and sales on your own as well. Make things a little easier on yourself and have your design and formatting needs taken care of by Tyler and Perry, who are also both Indie authors themselves.

 

To enter the give away to potentially win the Basic ebook cover design from Perry Elizabeth Design, do at least one of the several entry options listed in the below giveaway. The more you do, the better your odds of winning!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Journeying Through Your Novel Part Seven: The Lowpoint

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The seventh video in on our ongoing Youtube series on writing: in which Josiah decides to quit shooting videos, Daniel becomes a motivational speaker, and Anna decides to step out from behind the camera to give a surprise interview at the end.

 

Buy our merchandise: KP Swag Shop

Part One: The Characteristic Moment

Part Two: The Inciting Event

Part Three: The Pushpoint

Part Four: Tests and Trials (Part I)

Part Five: The Midpoint Shakeup

Part Six: Tests and Trials (Part II)

Music Credit: audiomachine.com

Profile photo of Josiah DeGraaf
Josiah DeGraaf is a high school English teacher and literature nerd who fell in love with stories when he was young and hasn’t fallen out of love ever since.
He writes because he’s fascinated by human motivations. What causes otherwise-good people to make really terrible decisions in their lives? Why do some people have the strength to withstand temptation when others don’t? How do people respond to periods of intense suffering? What does it mean to be a hero?
These questions drive him as a reader, and they drive him as a writer as well as he takes normal people, puts them in crazy situations (did he mention he writes fantasy?), and then forces them to make difficult choices with their lives.
Someday, Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels with worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as entertaining as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. In the meantime, you can find him writing articles here or short stories at his website (link below) as he works toward achieving these goals.

Journeying Through Your Novel Part Six: Tests and Trials (II)

kpcinemapost

Check out our latest video, in which we revisit the same topic again, engage in shameless advertising, and generally enjoy making fun of each other as we try to explain how you should write a novel.  In other words, everything’s running as usual in our ongoing Youtube series.

 

Buy our merchandise: KP Swag Shop

Part One: The Characteristic Moment

Part Two: The Inciting Event

Part Three: The Pushpoint

Part Four: Tests and Trials (Part I)

Part Five: The Midpoint Shakeup

Music Credit: Audiomachine

Profile photo of Josiah DeGraaf
Josiah DeGraaf is a high school English teacher and literature nerd who fell in love with stories when he was young and hasn’t fallen out of love ever since.
He writes because he’s fascinated by human motivations. What causes otherwise-good people to make really terrible decisions in their lives? Why do some people have the strength to withstand temptation when others don’t? How do people respond to periods of intense suffering? What does it mean to be a hero?
These questions drive him as a reader, and they drive him as a writer as well as he takes normal people, puts them in crazy situations (did he mention he writes fantasy?), and then forces them to make difficult choices with their lives.
Someday, Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels with worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as entertaining as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. In the meantime, you can find him writing articles here or short stories at his website (link below) as he works toward achieving these goals.

KP Subscriber Self-Publishes Her First Novel!

Kingdom Pen thanks Hailey for this insightful interview! Hailey recently completed and published her first novel, Jaded: The Silent Whisperer. The first in the Jaded trilogy, you can find this book on Amazon for print and in an Ebook edition.

Kingdom Pen: Kingdom Pen’s motto is “Write for the Kingdom.” What first inspired you to follow Christ and write for His Kingdom?Hailey_Woerner_Interview

Hailey Woerner: That’s a good question to start with. I’ve always loved to write, and it’s been my dream ever since I was nine to write and publish a novel. I think the one thing that inspired me to write for Christ was the realization that many books labeled under “Christian” are, obviously, tailored towards Christians.

But If there’s anything I’ve learned from the bible, it’s that God wants to be heard by those who are broken, and don’t know him. That’s why my books won’t be put in the “Christian” category. I want to reach those who aren’t Christians, and maybe God can speak to them through the theme of my story. My goal is to reach as many people as possible, and to do that, I will be putting more and more hints of the Spirit as I write each book. Less in the first, then work my way up. That make’s sense, right?

KP: We’ve all received the trademark “You do what now for fun?” looks when we tell others we love to write! What part about writing do you love the most and why?

HW: Oh, my. There are a lot of things I enjoy about writing…but I guess my favorite part would have to be creating the characters. The reason being, it’s an awesome feeling to create this whole new person. One with goals, struggles, and real feelings. There’s just something special about creating a new character—choosing the perfect name for them and giving them values. My novel is very character driven, so that might be part of it as well.

[Read more…]

Words of Similarity – Method to the Madness

Let’s face it. Your confused about who’s rules dictated how those annoying little similar words work and how their supposed to be used. You know, like two, to and too. Or their and they’re. Or its and it’s. What’s the difference, anyway?

For those of you who aren’t writers, believe it or not, us wordy people don’t always understand this madness any better than you do. When two or three or four words all sound the same but have completely different meanings, it’s pretty irritating (and difficult) to keep them all apart, but it’s kind of important, too. We here at Kingdom Pen aren’t obsessed with grammar. We value good, well-written and powerful stories much more than the correct usage of a past participle phrase (whatever the noun that’s supposed to be).  That said, however, words only have power when you use them correctly, and you can’t do that unless you understand the difference between them.

Here’s a video that should help simplify the madness for you. Bookmark the location for easy reference. You’ll probably need to refer back to this in the frequent future until you have time to memorize the difference between whose and who’s.

I know we’ll be right their with you.

 (Click on the picture to view the video)