The fictional stories hold its own beauty – you can create anything you wish.
You are the god of your own universe, isn’t it something we all wish for?
Everyone has a piece of a fictional story in their head; everyone’s the lead protagonist there and everyone’s living the perfect life in their universe.
Maybe they are dating the hot chick from the class or living the life of the famous billionaire.
When I was a young kid, I always had this fantasy to save my school for a terrorist attack.
Everyone has a story but everyone can’t be a writer.
You have to walk a mile before you can finally turn that “awesome fictional story” a world’s bestselling novel.
Unlike the lead protagonist in your story, you won’t be getting any help from a fairy.
Here is a list of certain tips that might help you to craft your next big selling saga.
1. Have a vision
Make sure to make your story visionary. You have to give a visual pleasure to all the readers.
Example – Let’s talk about Harry Potter novels.
J.K. Rowling crafted a magical world, literally. The world deals with magic. She described everything in great details. You can imagine a university, a market where one can find every exclusive item that deals with the magic, a popular form of sports that make extensive use of one of the popular accessory (I am talking about Quidditch), and even its own form of magical print media.
You can feel as being present in their world.
The visuals help the readers to feel like they are part of the universe. Put extensive details.
Don’t overdo it or put unnecessary details.
Put details that would help to get the readers know what they are reading about.
HINT – Imagine you are planning to go abroad. What would you like to know about the country before visiting the place? Use the same details to build your universe.
2. Give a purpose to the lead character
In our head, we are the notorious playboy or the respected entrepreneur of our universe.
The depth of the lead character is defined by its purpose.
Either they need to be on a quest to save the world, extract nuclear codes from the terrorists or win the heart of someone.
In some cases, the sole purpose of the protagonist can be to seek a purpose.
They could be trying to figure out what’s the meaning of life.
Example – Pie is a usual and surreal movie where the lead protagonist is trying to find a pattern to the stock market numbers. His quest involves him to meet a cult, few money hungry corporate individuals and at one point he even meets God.
Most of the Bollywood movies involve the lead actor to impress the lead actress.
Here is the twist.
Having a purpose is not enough, there needs to struggle. The lead character should face rejection, competition and even opposition from the girl before finally winning her heart. His struggle and will to overcome the obstacles give depth to the protagonists’ purpose.
3. Relatable characters
It is highly possible that most of the people won’t be able to relate to the lead character.
But if you are planning to make a mainstream story, there need to be as many lead protagonists as possible. You can come up with controversial topics to drive your story but if the readers failed to connect, it won’t mean anything.
Example – Game of thrones features so many characters that you might be able to connect with one or two. The show was able to gain popularity due to its shock elements and the insane number of casts. The show has gained widespread attention for constantly killing the lead (ouch), but you will find at least one character you can relate to.
We always have a desire we bury deep in our hearts, you can secretly live that unholy desire through one of the characters.
4. Why should anyone read your book at all?
The sole purpose to read a book is to explore more than we are capable of.
The readers need to explore a possibility through the lead character.
Most of us tend to choose the safe side and never bother to find out what the other option(s) could have done to us. We tend to live our life through others, and thus we pick the option that would be widely accepted.
So sometimes (many times in my case) we wonder what the other option could have done.
What if we had proposed to that girl of our dreams?
What if we had decided to follow our passion?
What if we had decided to take that trip?
What if we had decided to take that risk?
Explore the possibilities.
Example – 3 Idiots was a massive hit because the movie helped us to see what our life could have been like if we had decided to do all the things I just mentioned.
It appealed to the audience so much that it stayed housefull for several months.
Here is a fun fact – if we consider INR equal to Dollars, it will make 3 Idiots the biggest commercially successful movie, even surpassing Avatar.
Due to the fact that Dollar is far more valuable than INR, most of the Bollywood movies do not appear on the biggest financially successful movies.
The ending needs to be as brilliant as rest of the story.
Most of the writers fail to understand so. They just want to wrap it up as soon as they can, they believe readers won’t mind if rest of the story impressed them.
Here you are wrong.
Imagine you are eating an apple and when you are just about to finish it, you realize the core is rotten.
How will you feel?
The ending gives the final shape to your creation.
Example – “Luke, I’m your father”
It wasn’t the ending, but the twist changed everything.
This is one of the biggest plot twists in the history of movies.
In fact, if you give a perfect ending to your saga, readers might forgive your couple of shortcomings in the beginning.