Writing Lessons from Stranger Things

When Stranger Things started garnering hype on the internet in 2016, I sent a text to my mom telling her she should watch it. She enjoyed shows with vague paranormal/alternate universe stuff like Fringe, and from what I could tell, Stranger Things was right up her alley. I wasn’t all that interested. I was midway through the first semester of my first year of college, and I preferred to spend my limited free time writing or gaming.

And then within a week of me telling my mom to watch Stranger Things, she messaged me and insisted that I give the show a try. And because I’m a good child (most days, at least), I listened to my mother.

Whatever I thought Stranger Things was going to be, it was so much better.

The Netflix Original series, created by brothers Matt and Ross Duffer, takes place in 1983 in the small, midwestern town of Hawkins, Indiana. The premise is simple enough: a young boy vanishes without a trace, and mysterious events begin taking place around the town. Combining an engaging sci-fi world with 1980s nostalgia set Stranger Things apart, but beyond that, the show features strong writing, dynamic characters, and a fascinating story.

With Season 3 of Stranger Things being recently released, I thought it would be a good time to revisit the show’s first season and analyze what we can learn from it.

Beware – Spoilers for Season 1 of Stranger Things below!

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Writing Lessons From Avatar: The Last Airbender

There’s a stereotype of children’s entertainment being overly simplified and poorly written, and unfortunately, that’s true for a lot of children’s shows. Every so often though, there comes someone who puts time and effort into what they create, because they understand that children can be just as smart and perceptive as adults.

Avatar: The Last Airbender is one of those shows, and today I want to talk about just a few of the things we writers – even adult writers – can learn from it.

Beware, spoilers ahead!

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My Top 5 TV Shows

I was never one to watch a lot of TV. Even as a kid, I didn’t watch a lot of cartoons or other shows that most people of my generation remember fondly (it probably didn’t help that my family didn’t have cable television). The same held true for me as I got older, but in high school, I realized that TV shows weren’t just random cartoons and evening sitcoms. They could be just as interesting as the books I loved, just in a different way. Pretty soon, I found myself with a Netflix account, checking out a whole new world of storytelling.

This week, I want to share some of my favorite TV shows. There are many that I love, but these five are the ones that I find myself re-watching time and time again, and they’ve never stopped being interesting to me.

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Week In Review – December 1

Happy Friday, and happy December!

It’s hard to believe we’re nearing the end of 2017 already, but here we are at the beginning of December. I hope you all had a fantastic week and a good and restful weekend ahead of you. For me, this week was a bit crazy – I had a big project due along with some other assignments, but now that that’s past, I’m looking forward to doing some fun things this weekend.

I didn’t have time to write a normal Monday post this week, so instead I wrote about five things that motivated me to get through this week. If you’re feeling discouraged at all, I recommend taking a few minutes to think about things that can encourage you right now – it helps a lot!

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