31 – Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – Using the Relationship Axes to Create Interesting Character Dynamics

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo is a gritty YA fantasy heist story. It’s got a racing plot, an interesting setting, and amazing characters. In this episode, I analyse the relationship between Kaz and Inej, using Mary Robinette Kowal’s 6 relationship axes

:Mind – Both people have similar levels of intelligence.

Money – Both people have similar attitudes about money. They don’t both have to have the same amount. This is about what money is for and how it’s handled.

Morals – Similar moral compasses of right and wrong.

Manners – Similar senses of what is polite. So it’s possible to have the same manners and wildly different morals.

Monogamy – Similar attitudes about the relationship. You know that guy that thinks you are BFFs and you think you’re just colleagues?

Marx Brothers – You both find the same things funny. 

  Kaz Inej
Mind Arguably more intelligent, but this often gets in the way of him connecting with people. High IQ, low EQ – apart from when he’s sociopathically manipulating people Not as cunning or clever as Kaz, but with better genuine people skills.
Money “he is a young criminal prodigy, ready to do anything for the right price” – Leigh Bardugo. Wants money for selfish reasons (so he can destroy a gang leader who hurt him) Also wants money, but for unselfish reasons (so she can destroy slavers)
Morals Extremely flexible. Rock solid, mainly because of her religious convictions.
Manners Manipulative; views manners as a tool to use to further his goals. Seems relatively kind; uses manners in an unconsciously kind way, because she’s a kind person.
Monogamy Has feelings for Inej, but puts up walls to protect himself. Also has feelings for Kaz, but won’t commit to anything while he still maintains his walls.
Marx Brothers They both find it funny to upset the privledged, the cruel, the sadistic. In many ways, their mutual hatred of abusive authority figures binds them.

Source:  https://www.patreon.com/posts/writing-stable-8172456 

Show Notes:

Episode 25 – all about Crooked Kingdom, the sequel to this novel:  https://novelanalyst.com/2019/04/30/25-crooked-kingdom-by-leigh-bardugo-the-art-of-setting-descriptions/ 

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25 – Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo – The Art of Setting Descriptions

In this fantastic YA fantasy novel, the town of Ketterdam is a living, breathing, three-dimensional creation: as much a character as any of the other (brilliant) characters in this story. Bardugo is a master of making a setting come to life. In today’s in-depth episode, I analyse a scene to extract key techniques writers can use to improve their setting descriptions.

No mourners, no funerals.

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Shownotes:

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21 – The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – Meaningful Endings and the Truth

21 – The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – Meaningful Endings and the Truth.

Truth. It’s one of the most important aspects of story – especially of stories that are fantastical. In this episode, I explore how Gaiman created a truthful, meaningful, and emotional resonant ending to his Hugo and Newberry award-winning novel: The Graveyard Book. (Includes bonus singing from yours truly) Enjoy!

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Shownotes:

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20 – Elantris by Brandon Sanderson – Avalanche Endings

If you want to learn how to write explosive, fast-paced, balastic endings, Elantris by Brandon Sanderson is an excellent novel to study – which is what I do in this episode! Enjoy!

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Shownotes:

Want to read my free short story? Get it here: A Clockwork Prison

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18 – Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson – Misfit Characters

Sometimes the key to compelling characters is to make them NOT fit neatly into your plot. That’s what Sanderson does in Warbreaker – a stand-alone fantasy book (that he also gives away for free on his website!).

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***

Shownotes:
Get Warbreaker for free from Brandon’s website: https://brandonsanderson.com/books/warbreaker/warbreaker/
Get my free short story! A Clockwork Prison

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15 – 2018 in review – Everything I Read, Favourite Books, and Top Writing Lessons

With 2018 in the rear view mirror, I recap all 61 books I read last year, and extract key writing lessons I learnt from them. Enjoy this special bonus episode!

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Shownotes:

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10 – Mistborn The Final Empire – by Brandon Sanderson – Mastering the Grand Skill of Worldbuilding

Sanderson is a master of creating compelling fantasy worlds. Mistborn is a perfect example – and it’s one of the best novel’s I’ve read this year. In this episode, I’ll analyse different techniques Sanderson uses to craft an amazing world.

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Shownotes:

Brandon Sanderson’s (Amazing!) writing lectures: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4ZDBOc2tX8&list=PLH3mK1NZn9QqOSj3ObrP3xL8tEJQ12-vL

Brandon Sanderson’s Laws of Magic: https://brandonsanderson.com/sandersons-first-law/

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Twitter: @JedHerne

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