Reply To: Creating Variety in Stories

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R.M. Archer

All of @taylorclogston’s advice was excellent. So ditto all of that. (I can especially attest to the value of setting limits. I once challenged myself to write a story with as little dialogue as possible because I know I tend to lean on dialogue too much and that story is now one of my favorites.)

I would also add that there’s a lot of variety to be found if you consciously tap into your interests and values and build stories around those! Because no one has the same mix of interests and values that you do, if you weave these into your writing (especially with intention) you’ll develop a story that no one else could have developed. If community means a lot to you and you want more tight communities to show up in literature, that’s something you can write about. If you love astronomy, maybe you can build a fictional society with advanced astronomical knowledge. If you’re interested to explore the potential consequences of a philosophy like pacifism, there are ways you can do that through worldbuilding and story. If you follow what you’re already interested in, not only in writing but also outside of literature, you’ll come up with some really cool stories.

One more thing, which is probably not particularly helpful now but might be helpful to keep in mind down the road, is that consistency isn’t necessarily bad. Once you’re writing a variety of stories, it’s okay if most of them seem to center around a particular theme or if you have a favorite archetype for your main characters or if your worlds have common threads between them. You don’t want all of these things to consistently match, but if you identify one or two elements that seem to show up in a lot of your stories, use that because it’s probably what you’re most passionate about exploring through literature, something you find important, and what you consistently explore can help identify your work as yours and help you connect with the readers who want to read what you like to write.

Fantasy/dystopian/sci-fi author. Mythology nerd. Worldbuilding enthusiast. Singer. Fan of classic literat

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