Author Archive | Julie

Enhance your Writing with Symbolism

An earlier version of this post appeared on Let the Words Flow, but I’ve gone back and updated it for Pub(lishing) Crawl, because I find myself thinking about the power of symbolism a lot lately. This post makes a nice companion to my recent post on motifs, which you can find here. Symbolism is an aspect of literature that makes a lot of people groan. Perhaps it takes us back to those days of high […]


Add Depth to your Story with Motifs!

Motifs—What the heck are they and why should you use them in your writing? I will admit that, as a writer, I have often been asked, “What’s your book about?” but I’ve never even once been asked, “What are the motifs in your book?” It would appear that no one really thinks or cares about motifs, so why would a writer care to include them? The answer is simple—motifs can add a layer of depth […]


Revealing Character through Details

Is creating a character like designing a building? Mies van der Rohe (German born, American architect, 1886-1969,) famously said, “God is in the details.” This quote is a reference to the fact that it’s the small, subtle design elements that can make a building (or even a book, perhaps?) transcend the common to become something unique and beautiful. Interestingly, Mies van der Rohe is also credited with having said, “Less is more,” a reference to […]


The Hero’s Journey

All writers are storytellers. Today’s bestselling authors share this with the creators of the ancient myths of human kind. In fact, the best stories seem to incorporate the principles of myth in ways that are dramatic, entertaining, and true to the human experience. Joseph Campbell was perhaps the most prominent “mythologist” of our time. In his book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Campbell distilled the components of the myths of widely varied cultures from all over […]


Conditioning Forces – Or, your character doesn’t live in a vacuum!

In the 1951 play, Bedtime Story, by Sean O’Casey, the protagonist is faced with the goal of getting a prostitute out of his apartment before his roommate comes home. The character’s goals are founded on the fact that he is a devout Roman Catholic, feels terribly guilty, and doesn’t want his indiscretion to be discovered. Getting the prostitute out of the house without being detected becomes the main character’s all encompassing goal. The prospect of […]