Questions tagged [stakes]

The term 'stakes' refers to what could be lost if the hero of a novel does not succeed in whatever his endeavors are. They provide the impetus for the hero to attain his goal; because if he doesn't, whatever is at stake will be lost. Questions using this tag should be about how to incorporate, develop, or generate stakes.

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How can I get readers to accept more than 1 “buy” in worldbuilding?

An alternative "Occult Universe" I open my occult detective novel in what is ostensibly a "noir" style, but through worldbuilding I attempt to show that the story is set in an alternate occult ...
6
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3answers
174 views

What does the death of a fictional character mean?

When should a writer kill their protagonist off? Inspired by a question about character lifetime and another about what makes the death of a character satisfying for the reader, I have begun to ...
4
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3answers
301 views

How can I raise the stakes and make a character's decision compelling?

I am currently writing a short story in which the story's climax revolves around the protagonist making and carrying out a decision to take action. I have come to realise that the decision I ...
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4answers
333 views

I'm using the same formula for stakes over and over - is this a problem?

First of all, let me explain that I am a plotter, and that I am an extreme case. This means that I develop my novels basically down to the scene before I even think of writing a first draft. This is ...
1
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2answers
192 views

How Can You Include Public Stakes in a Character Novel?

In Donald Maass's book Writing the Breakout Novel, he talks about stakes. He goes over how a breakout novel needs two kinds: personal stakes - what the hero could lose - and public stakes - what the ...