“About” and Defining Features

Earlier this week, before I went off on a tangent, I talked about what stories were about—their plots, characters, underlying themes, etc. One of the things I’ve noticed on the subject is a problem, or at least a hazard, I’ve run into involving characters with defining characteristics that particularly set them apart.
So a character has [...]

What Is This Story About?

What is this story, or this game, about?
It seems like such a simple question. (Then again, so does “Who are you?”) But I ask it, and people start hanging up—not so simple an answer.
Often people will answer first with the characters around whom the plot focuses. It’s about three women who hijack a war with [...]

Nonvisual Manifestations of Magic

A long time ago, I asked a question: why do we always see magic? The answer I originally worked with was that it was easier, since people are visual; I know the English language has more sight-words than sound-words or taste-words or scent-words. But sometimes, it makes sense to make someone’s arcane senses pan to [...]