There is nothing like reading a really bad book to get you thinking about the details when it comes to writing. I just finished (skimmed) a book hoping that at some point it would get better, but no. 250 pages of confusion. Props that would suddenly appear and you wonder what that has to do with anything, 10 pages later it is just what the hero needed to escape, or the clue needed. And it bounced from setting to setting almost every couple of pages, very confusing as well as wading through massive info dumps. I was so disappointed because when I read the back blurb it sounded so promising.
I'm ears deep in revisions and edits trying to polish my story to the best of my ability...just in case. *G*
I started thinking about what it is that I like most about my favourite books. Conflict is a must in any book but I'll touch on that again in a second. I realized that it was the stories that have strong well developed characters that I enjoy the most. Firefly/Serenity for instance. This is a cast of very different very well thought out characters that reacted to each other in very different ways. Don't get me started with Jayne. He seems to be one dimensional but there is layers to that boy I tell ya. Layers.
So I took a good look at my own characters...yikes not many layers there. Wait let me rephrase. They have layers but only in my head, I haven't gotten all the information out so they seem a bit 2 dimensional. So I have to get more of their individual history in there.
Then there is the conflict. I have read tons of times that you have to be mean to your characters. Do terrible things to them. I think I have been to nice. There are lots of aweful things I can do that will both help with the layering and build a better climax. (No not that climax, the other one)
But all this adds up to a whole lot of changes, additions and hopefully a better story in the end. I need to type quicker.