Monday, August 31, 2015

Leveling Up Your Character's Magic Skills Part 1

Pokemon, the game, came to mind for some reason. I know, total nerd moment. Thank Nintendo for bringing Pokemon to the near-front of my mind. Well, in gaming, you unlock new abilities when you level up. The post is gonna be extra nerdy. You have been warned ;)

Your magic user will do some leveling up. If your power source is alive, that'll probably do some changing as well.

Unless the character is like 1,000 years old, they aren't going to know everything about their powers in Book 1. Even then, some things about the system will remain a mystery. Think Harry Potter. There's a school to teach magic yet some things even the teachers don't know. Take Avatar: The Last Airbender, the cartoon not the movie. Toph, an earthbender, invented metalbending- something totally new. Earthbending has been around for centuries.

What are the ways you can level up a character?

The character attend a magic school. They're someone's apprentice. They observe someone use they're power and copy that person secret.

Your character is put in a life-threatening situation or someone they care about is in danger. This doesn't just mean mortal danger. This could mean being kidnapped to be sent into slavery or to marry some evil warlord.

They discover a new ability to save a life. Take Toph for example. She was trapped in a metal box being taken somewhere she really, really didn't want to go. She needed to do something. Be careful. You might be tempted to make your characters go all Super Saiyan.
Try to avoid going the omnipotent route. Even if you've stated earlier in the story that your character has a lot of untapped power, don't make them so powerful they can easily solve any problem.

Boss Battle
If you're character survives a fight with a strong enemy, they will become more powerful. They could purposefully but themselves against a notorious baddy out of necessity or they simply want to defeat someone other people couldn't.

This combines both danger and training. It's similar to a Boss Battle only the opponent isn't an enemy. I use this one often. My characters spar with someone, usually a stronger opponent. They need to dig deep to find a way to beat the other person because their usual attacks don't work. The stronger opponent usually fights like they're trying to kill the weaker one. They're not. It just seems that way to get the weaker opponent to take the battle seriously.

This can go real wrong if you have two inexperienced character practicing. An experienced person will know how to battle without seriously injuring their opponent. Two newbs fighting might end with some broken bones or someone being knocked unconscious. This might also happen in a strong vs. weak battle. The stronger one could make a mistake.

What if
This is similar to danger but the character's life doesn't need to be threatened. They need to solve a puzzle or they're bored. They try something new with their power and it works. In The Sciell, Vayle wanted to power an old generator. He knew Lifeblood (his power) was pure energy and it worked like electricity in his village. He never used Lifeblood to power technology. He tried using it to turn on the generator. He eventually got it to work. It didn't work for long, though.

If your magic system is old enough, someone will have written a book on it. Or, an ancient civilization wrote instructions on the walls of a temple, cave, stone tablet, parchment...any material that lasts over 100 years.

A Guide
Continuing with the nerdy theme. In The Legend of Zelda, Link has a fairy that pops up to offer.. lets call it advice.
For non-gamers, you remember old Microsoft Word, when you started tying a letter, the paperclip appeared.

You could give your character a travel companion who knows the magic system but only gives the protag info they need at that moment. This might create some nice tension. The character wants some info but the guide doesn't talk.

Potion or Item
In the game, you can force your Pokemon to evolve by using certain items. You can also use items to boost a certain ability. A character would wear special gloves that raises their power 2 or 3 levels. Try to stay away from things that makes the character super powerful instantly. If you have an object that significantly raises their level, it shouldn't be easy to find or full-proof-- only the worthy can make the stone work. It could be temporary or have some side effects.

What are the ways you level up your characters?

Next time, we'll cover tips on determining what the power evolves in to. I'm a bit stuck on that. My power system needs to evolve between Books 3 and 4 of The Merging Worlds series and I don't know how it's gonna change.

Read Part 2!

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Week in Links 8/28/15 Marvel's Civil War, Podcasting for Authors, Write Video Games

The 5 Deadliest Games in SF/F
Five Sci-Fi Books That Crank Out the Funny

Writing, Publishing and Bookishness
How Does a Book Editor Work?
How to Act Like A Graphic Designer--A Brief List
The Opposite of Colorblind: Why it's essential to talk to children about race
Dumbledore is Death Incarnate in J.K. Rowling's Favorite Harry Potter Fan Theory
The Powerful Nutrition of Poetry

Captain America and Iron Man's Civil War Teams Revealed'Star Trek Beyond' cast delivers touching tribute to Leonard Nimoy
Marvel May Be Planning A New Blade Movie—Starring His Daughter
The Summer Movies Of 2015: What Worked and What Didn't
How to Sell Digital Products & Services Directly from Your Website: Advice for Authors and Freelancers
8 Ways to Use Google+ Hangouts for Your Business
How to Make a Podcast
6 Ways to Use Periscope for Your Business

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Author Business Plan

Publishing a book is a business. I don't want to treat it like a hobby. It's my career. You've probably heard the term authorpreneur.
"An author who creates a written product, participates in creating their own brand, and actively promotes that brand through a variety of outlets."
Even if you go the traditional route, you're an authorpreneur. I'm about to finish grad school and I'd like to continue this life working from home-- without my tuition refund.

If you want to be a full-time author, you need to do more than just write. Unless you're Stephen King or J.K. Rowling, more than likely, you aren't going to make enough money from book sales to live off of. It is possible but unlikely. Even those authors didn't start out as mega-brands.

Well, I've studied some authors who publish many books a year. I mean above average--more than 3. Maybe about 5-10. Their stories are usually about 50,000 words. They don't do a lot of marketing and promotion. They don't do anything else except publish many books a year. It's probably possible to make a living off your books if you write a lot of them.

You'd still need a plan for that-- at least a publishing schedule.

You don't sell hundreds of thousands of books by just winging it, especially if you're an independent author. When you sell that many books, people notice you. They start making you offers, inviting you to speak.

You need a business plan. Here are some resources on creating a business plan and being an authorpreneur.

Do Writers Really Need a Book Business Plan?
"It’s vital for a writer to have a Book Business Plan because your books and you are the products to be sold. It makes most writers queasy to even imagine selling themselves but without a plan, you can hardly figure out a way for your book to sell itself. Think of it as a GPS getting you from Starving Writer Street to Successful Author Square."
The 7-Step Business Plan for Writers
The roadmap we created allowed us to avoid distractions and focus on what would help us grow.
Introducing the Business Plan for Writers Worksheet!
"Business plans don’t have to be about numbers or sales projections. (I don’t do math. *smile*) They can also be about defining who we are as an author and what we want for our dreams....In addition, simply having a business plan might help us present ourselves more professionally. Our family and friends might see that we’re serious about our writing and better understand or respect our choices. Or at the very least,we’d know how serious we are."
[Book]  Business For Authors. How To Be An Author Entrepreneur by Joanne Penn
"I’m an author because it is my passion and my joy … but also because it can be a business in this age of global and digital opportunity." 
Small Business Administration: Create Your Business Plan 
"This living document generally projects 3-5 years ahead and outlines the route a company intends to take to grow revenues."

Monday, August 24, 2015

Movie Review: Sinister 2

Well Sinister 2 was messed up. A movie where a monster makes children kill their family is gonna be a little twisted. But, it wasn't as good as the first one, Sinister. Not surprising.

The lawnmower scene from Sinister still freaks me out. I expected, hoped, Sinister 2 would be equally terrifying. It did have some disturbing moments but I didn't find them as memorable as the lawnmower scene. Sinister 2 was watchable but not spectacular.

I think with Sinister, I hadn't seen a movie like it before. I wasn't expecting it to be part snuff film- making the movie far more memorable. With Sinister 2, I expected the murder films so it wasn't as jarring. No, snuff films are disturbing no matter what. I can't seem to make up my mind about this movie.

It did make me jump so, score one for Sinister 2. I like jump-scares as long as they're not overused. I don't think the snuff films were the problem. More like, I wasn't sucked into the story.

The plot wasn't terrible though it had some distracting unanswered questions. The tie to the first movie was weak. The deputy from the first movie was at the center of this one.
Sinister 2 didn't do a good job of explaining how the former deputy started burning down houses to protect people from the bogyman. He had all these crime scene photos. How was he able to keep those after he stopped being a deputy?

Why would Baghuul bother him in the first place? The former deputy didn't have any children. He didn't live in a cursed house. Was he angry the man was burning down his traps? Baghuul haunted him but we got off-the-clock demon. He didn't put any effort into scaring away the former deputy.
I wished they did more with Baghuul. The movie relied to heavily on his creepy looks. His scenes didn't make any sense. 

Sinister 2 started in the middle of the haunting. The children was already talking to ghosts. Didn't care for this approach. I felt like I missed something. I needed the movie to back up a couple of days.
Is there a new trend with telling horror stories from a child's perspective? First Insidious 3 and now Sinister 2. I feel both movies would've been way better if they were told from an adult's perspective. The mom didn't even know about the ghost children until the end. One of the boys was going into the basement every night to watch a murder movie. Why didn't she hear him? The two boys were adorable but their acting was...adequate. 
That expression it!

And then there were the ghost children. They weren't the least bit frightening. The children were far more terrifying in the first movie. Sinister 2 hinted that the dead children where luring the lives ones out of fear of Baghuul. I wanted more on that. Baghuul forced these children to kill their families and then took them away. Why would they willingly work with him? Unless, the children all came from messed up families where they all secretly wanted to kill their parents and siblings? 

Sinister 2 is making me think so it's not all bad. 
Horror isn't all about ghosts and gore. Well played Sinister 2 for tapping into real life horror. The mom and her two boys were on the run from an abusive husband/father. The mom couldn't do anything against him because the douche was too well connected. What kind of  mess is that?! The man sends his child to the hospital and the mom has to fight for custody of her children. The man was awful. That family was messed up. That story line worked. 
That twist, though, towards the end... Well played. Sinister 2 tried to do something different.

The movie wasn't as lazy as The Woman in Black 2 but it wasn't as disturbing as Sinister. Given the state of horror movies, I'm satisfied if a film is watchable. I would've liked more from Sinister 2 but I didn't leave the theater thinking I wasted my money. 

Friday, August 21, 2015

The Week in Links 8/21/15 Frankenstein, Star Trek Beyond, Mecha Car

Victor and Igor Toy with Wrathful Forces in the First Victor Frankenstein Trailer
Graphic Novels for 6 Types of Fantasy Fans
The Popularity of Dystopian Film and Its Effect on Dystopian Literature
What to put in Your Author Media Kit

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Behind the Cover: Cover Reveal!!!

It's time for another look behind the cover. My first non-fiction book Building Dark Worlds: A World Building Guide will be released in October.

The cover presented a new challenged. I knew I wanted to use this image.
It describes a dark world perfectly. I tested the image on Twitter. That tweet got some good interaction and this was before I overhauled my Twitter account.

There's one huge problem. This image is so...impactful. I didn't know what to do with it. I've mentioned this before, I don't like using unedited stock images for covers because there's a chance someone else will have my cover. But, what do I do with this beast?!

I went against my rule and tried the image with just a nice font. The book was called Dark Fantasy World Building. More on why I changed the title later.
Meh. It's fine but it wasn't speaking to me. I needed a good image to pair with this- a background that wouldn't make the cover too noisy. Before I started buying images, I first checked what I already had. This one spoke to me:

It's a beautiful image without being too loud. This book cover was the first one I designed without spending any extra money. I already owned the images I needed!

Alright. We're getting somewhere. I played a bit with the clouds so it looked like the skull city was in the clouds instead of on top of another image. But, I showed the above image to my publisher and she wasn't sold. She wasn't a fan of the title.

For this book, I did a keyword search on Google adwords and Amazon and found that "dark worlds" was a popular search term. That phrase needed to be in my title. As I was compiling the posts, I realized the tips didn't just apply to fantasy. Sci-fi world builders could use this book.
Without "fantasy" the title's flow was way off.
Interesting, but I wasn't sold. I stepped back from the cover since I wasn't crunched for time.

I was watching a video on YouTube about book marketing. It started talking about covers and how some designers effectively used the spacing between letters for their non-fiction books. And a light bulb went off.

I started working on my cover again and came up with the title font you saw at the beginning of this post.
The video also said some authors put their names at the top to make the book look like a bestseller. If you look at the covers of any book on your shelf or on Amazon, 90% of the ones with the author's name at the top are books by big name authors. The name is selling the book.

My name was at the bottom. It's too hidden for my liking. So, I moved it to the top. Here's the final cover!!

Opinions welcome!

The book will cover:
  • Why do people like dark fiction
  • Naming your world
  • Finding inspiration
  • Writing apocalyptic, post-apocalyptic and dystopain stories
  • Creating a magic system
  • Writing Anti-heroes/heroines and monsters
  • and more

Monday, August 17, 2015

Book Review: Dark World

It's been awhile since I finished a book. I don't have the patience to struggle through a story I'm not in to with the hope that it'll get better. A while ago, I kinda gave up on finding novels I enjoy. I read more manga than books. Then came Dark World.

I love books where the POV characters aren't human and have powers. Kane is a 300 year old demon and Scarlet/Fate is a human turned shade. The story is set in the underworld. My kind of book. And, it's called Dark World. I'm a sucker for a dark world.The person on the cover looks like something out of an anime.

This author knows how to crank up the suspence. She had my heartrate up from start to finish. I actually read this book at home, not just on the train. That rarely happens. I might have to read it again. I was so worried about the characters, I raced through the story. I probaly missed something important. The worldbuiling was on point. I like the author's take on hell.

Scarlet's a teenage girl who became Fate, a shade. She's thrown into the underworld. Shades are these nasty monsters who don't have a mind of thier own. Every demon hates them. Fate's different. She held onto part of her personality. The whole tennage girl turned vicious monster could've been real irritating. I don't want a story about a girl whining about her fate *wink*.

Shades can be badass. Fate had some moments. Most of the time, she was just a girl who happened to to be a shade. I wanted to see more of the badass side of her. There was this huge battle at the end and she didn't do any fighting. The story showed she was more than capable of taking down a demon or two. She wasn't totally pathetic so she didn't annoy me.

The story is part romance between Fate and Kane. I enojed the romance but I didn't beleive it. I don't care for the whole instant connection trope. Fate and Kane where talking about how they loved each other and I'm like, "how did that happen?!" I had to shelve my disbelief.  But, I didn't hate the idea of them being in love. I just needed more. They meet and then 2 or 3 days later they're talking about love.

The story threw in another male. I'm not a fan of love trianlges. I had to stop reading to take a look at the Goodreads reviews.  Fortunatly, Dark World didn't have a love triangle. The story aslo had the chosen one trope. I like that only in Harry Potter. I don't particualrly care for stories where the character is special for simply existing. That part of Dark World did annoy me but not enough to stop reading the book.

Dark World was a fun read. And, it's free. I'm trying to figure out how I missed this book. It was published in 2011.
A beautiful monster.

That’s what Scarlet Prince became after she was damned to a nocturnal world crawling with sphinxes, gargoyles, and necromancers. If only she’d heeded the warnings of the local legend, none of this would have happened.

With a dark destiny haunting her and unearthly powers she can’t control, she is torn between freeing the inhabitants of Dark World and satiating her lust for souls, until she finds the one thing she never expected in a war-torn netherworld: Love.

Only he’s the enemy. Loving him could very well destroy the entire realm—and every human on earth.

Friday, August 14, 2015

The Week in Links 8/14/15 New Marvel Superhero, Phone Reading, Twitter Tips

Where Are All The People of Color in Sci-Fi/Fantasy?
Why I write dark fiction? 
JRR Tolkien's first fantasy story to be published this month
How to Grow Your Twitter Following

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Don't Always Write What You Know- Do Something Different

It's kind of funny. We write fantasy where pretty much anything is possible and we still can get stuck writing what we know. Who came up with that concept anyway, write what you know.

Today, I came across this post Science in Science Fiction: seasons.
"Even on Earth, there are many places where the seasons don’t conform to this four-part structure at all. Anyone who has lived on or near the equator can tell you that the four seasons are total rubbish. The “summer” is isn’t any less warm than “winter”, and trees lose their leaves either not at all, whenever they damn well please, or in response to a dry period. Even further away from the equator, seasonal rainfall is a much more dominant factor in determining the season. Before the European concept of spring, summer, autumn and winter was adopted in these regions, native peoples had much better ways of describing local seasons. They usually involved the absence or presence of rain."
Reading this article I was like, "Oh, that's right!" I live with four seasons so it's only natural my worlds have winter, summer, spring and fall. It never occurred to me to play with that concept. For my Merging Worlds Series, the main land in the book, Jael, has cold winters where most of the land in buried under snow. Still, the land has four seasons.

Most of the books I read are set in worlds based on medieval Europe. They all have four seasons. It's nice reading Dark World where the land is underground and always dark. Now, that's different.

I had a similar imagination block a couple of years ago. I was giving my characters realistic looking weapons when I didn't have to. I talked about this in Stretch Your Imagination. Recently, building the world for The Marked Hosts (Devortus Reigns) was harder than usual because I wanted to do something different.

I follow many blogs and authors and do research so I can write about things and people outside my little bubble. If you only read one type of fantasy novel, that's what you're gonna write. I'm glad I came to this genre through horror. I also live on Pinterest. That site has artwork for all kinds of different fantasy worlds and people.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

#BookLuvHop: Finding Comfort & Company in Books

I don't usually post on Sundays but it's Book Lovers' Day! How can I let that go by without doing something?! In honor of Book Lovers' Day, myself and some awesome writing buddies are talking about our love for books. This is my first Blog Hop. I'm super excited.

I've always been drawn to introverted characters. The ones that aren't popular, who have trouble making small talk, the super geeky ones that are fine spending hours by themselves reading. The single ones without many ex-boyfriends.

I've been "quiet" since middle school. I used quotes because I can talk your head off about subjects I'm passionate about. I have no problems doing presentations. When I'm with a group of people, I do more listening than talking.

For those quiet people, you may sometimes feel like there's something wrong with you. Why can't I talk like everyone else? I did when I was younger. I hated when people asked, "Why are you so quiet?"

That's where books came in.
I don't remember what the program was called but I got 5 Babysitters Club books in the mail every month when I was a kid. Mary Anne was my favorite.

I don't read a lot of sci-fi, but as you can see, A Wrinkle in Time got a lot of love.

I could not find my copy of The Silver Kiss. I am so upset. This is not a book I would throw away or give away. I need to find that book or buy another one. It needs to be in my collection. 

So, what do these books have in common? Why are they still so important to me? 

The main characters were introverts. They weren't at the top of the food chain at school. They let me know I wasn't alone. They were insecure about their awkwardness just like I was. As the invisible one in grade school, I often dreamed of dating the hot guy. The main characters got the guy, sort of. The ending of The Silver Kiss still breaks my heart.

Despite being quiet, unpopular and generally allergic to large gatherings, the characters weren't boring. They went on adventures. They overcame fears. They got the guy without pretending to be something they weren't. 

I looked up to Mary Anne from The Babysitters Club, Meg in A Wrinkle in Time and Zoe in The Silver Kiss. They were misfits just like me. Zoe had one friend. Meg didn't have any. Marry Anne showed me that despite being socially awkward, I could have friends who understood me.

People like to sleep on the quiet ones. These characters were badass in different ways. Their stories were an inspiration. 

Now I really want to re-read A Wrinkle in Time. A bit afraid I might further damage the book though. 

Thanks for stopping by! For more book love, please visit these amazing bloggers next.

Cat Michaels- Cat's Corner
Cat marks Book Lovers' Day with a wink and a smile in her RAP, (Really-Awful Poem), "Ode to Books," with apologies to Gertude Stein, the Bard, Dr. Seuss and true poets everywhere.

Carmela DutraBlog for Your Thoughts
Did you ever read a book that just made you fall madly in love with it?

Corrina HolyoakeVenturing Into The Unknown
Corrina marks Book Lovers' Day by popping the paintbrushes away and putting her feet up to indulge in one of her favorite pastimes.

Leigh Shearin- Leigh Shearin, Writer
How I found the secret to life on the big oak bookcase.

Sondra Robbins Rymer- Fairy Tales Imagery
Sondra marks Book Lover's Day by slipping into the past to pick up a beloved children's book and quietly obsess over "This is where it all BEGAN!

Karen Emma Hall- Kid Literature Blog
Enjoy Book Lovers' Day by making time to read.

If you have a blog about book love, post your link in the comments section, and we'll give you some blog loving!

Friday, August 7, 2015

The Week in Links 8/7/15 Deadpool Trailers, Book Piracy, Writing & Gaming

Fantasy/Sci-Fi/ Horror
So, you want to write a superhero story?
It Came from the Water! Top Aquatic Horror Movies
End of the World Literature – Post-Apocalyptic Fiction- Book Recommendations
On Research, Rabbit Holes, and Sci-Fi Worldbuilding
Ali Larter Returns in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

Writing Life and Publishing
Authors Can Take a Byte Out of Internet Piracy – Rhonda Rees | Guest Post

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Long-Lasting, Evergreen, Posts

I noticed certain industry professionals share their content several times. I don't mean in one day. I mean over the course of a week. Also, they share other people's content- articles written sometimes 2 or 3 years ago.

You've probably heard the term evergreen content. It's content that doesn't go out of date.
"The term “evergreen” sounds familiar even to the non-marketing ear because evergreen trees (usually the pine or fir variety) are often used to decorate homes at Christmas. The evergreen tree is a symbol of perpetual life because they retain their leaves throughout the seasons, rather than shedding. Like the trees, evergreen content is considered sustainable and lasting." (What is Evergreen Content?)
Watching those industry professionals share "old" content gave me an idea. I went through my blog posts, all of them, and found content with a lot of pageviews and that weren't dated. Some of those post I wrote in 2013. I shared them on Twitter since I've been getting some good engagement on that social network.

Most of the posts received a good number of retweets and favorites. The pageviews for all those posts increased.

I'm turning most of those posts into a book. I can skip a day of blogging and my daily pageviews won't go down. That's due, in part, to my evergreen content.
"From a blog management standpoint, evergreen content is more effective than date-oriented content, as it can be written once and enjoyed by many different readers over time. Publishing evergreen content diminishes the workload on blog managers, as these posts can be re-run in the future while still providing value to the audience at large." (What is Evergreen Content and Why Should You Care?)
It can be both easy and hard to write evergreen content. For us, we could give writing advice. Most of that never gets old. All my evergreen content deals with books and writing (mostly world building). The problem, you're not the only author giving writing advice. Creating evergreen content is difficult for fiction writers.

I tend to focus my writing tips on the horror and dark fantasy genre. For fantasy writers, you can talk about world building.  I get a lot of traffic from people wanting to know how to come up with names for their fantasy world. My Naming Your Fantasy World post is still popular. I wrote that in 2013.

If you find you're good at writing dialogue, give some tips on that topic. If you're a published author, talk about your path to publishing. Newbie authors never get tired of reading about how writers became authors.

The content doesn't have to be writing advice. I do posts on mythical creatures. That's evergreen. Find a way to connect long-lasting content with your genre or brand.

The Complete List of Evergreen Content Ideas
4 Ways to Repurpose Your Evergreen Content
7 Strategies for Developing Evergreen Content

Monday, August 3, 2015

Why Do We Like Dark Stories?

I love, love dark stories. I love horror. I love those authors that aren’t afraid to go there. The pure good guys are boring. I need an anti-hero- a character with some sass and some questionable morals. Throw in some gore, set the story in a fantasy world and I am there. Dark is not always bad. I find that fascinating.

As you might know, I'm writing a dark world building book called Building Dark Worlds.  I'm researching the appeal of dark fiction so I can write a section on it for the book. Here's what I've come up with so far.

Update: Building Dark Worlds is now available. 

Confronting our Fears
Books are safe. We can experience monsters, the apocalypse, serial killers (our worst fears) without the threat of death—although a beloved character’s death can bring a reader to tears. You read books about a haunted house. How many people would actually go into a rumored haunted house? I like ghost stories. I have no desire to see a ghost. I don't want to be terrorized by demons. Why do you think most aliens in books and movies are bad- taking over the world, enslaving humans. The unknown is scary.

A Dose of Reality
A happily-ever-ending is good every once in a while. That’s not how life works. Books show us the world. Everyone has some darkness in them. The world is not perfect. Horror movies rarely have happy endings. In this apocalyptic book I just read, the character travels across the world in hopes of finding his family. In the end, he didn't find them.

A character going through the same things the reader is going through—low-self-esteem, abusive relationships— makes the reader feel like they’re not alone. It shows them they can survive. A zombie apocalypse story is rarely about the zombies. It’s about people trying to survive even when terrible on top of terrible happens.

Going back to my first point, we can experience the dark side of the world from the comfort of our homes. We experience another’s life through books.

Why do fantasy books have to be realistic? We want to feel like we can really walk between platforms 9 and 10 at King's Cross Station and catch the Hogwarts Express. You want people to believe your made-up world could actually exist. You want people to see themselves in your characters.

Reading a dark story is like riding a roller coaster. We enjoy being scared. It’s a rush of adrenaline. Nothing gets the heart going like watching a character you like running from a wave as tall as the Statue of Liberty. You’re traveling with a character you’ve grow to love and the author puts them in an impossible situation. You're right there feeling their pain and anger. You race through the pages- sometimes skipping paragraphs. Will your favorite character live or die? Will they get there in time to save the child. You need to know. Dark creates a situation where characters can fail. They can lose a battle. They can die.

Why do you enjoy dark stories? 
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