So here are my thoughts on an old DnD concept called the Rule of Cool and how I apply it to my writing. (I’m not sure who first came up with this term but I heard it from Mathew Mercer).
The basic rule of the Rule of Cool is that if a character says something that is super awesome then the Dungeon Master should let it happen even though it is against the rules.
Do I allow the rule of cool to break the rules of the world I’ve built? The short answer, no. I believe following the rules for the world you created is extremely important. The reader will start to distrust the story if the author decides he/she can just break the rules in order to save the skin of a character.
That isn’t why I bring up this DnD rule.
I believe the Rule of Cool is an excellent idea to bring to the genres of Fantasy and Science Fiction because it can A) Destroy Writer’s Block and B) Create some really cool scenes.
A) I personally do not believe in Writer’s block but I do believe in momentarily not knowing where to take the story. That is when I came up with the idea of using the Rule of Cool for my stories!
B) This rule helps your story from going stale and your reader from becoming bored.
The Rule of Cool could be related to the Writing tools such as the “Yes, but” or the “No, and” (You can find this tool explained by Brandon Sanderson on youtube)
How do I use the Rule of Cool?
Let’s say that our characters just pulled themselves out of a hole in the ground and I am unsure where to go from here. (I’m a discovery writer, btw). I use the Rule of Cool! What would be cool in this scene? What would I want to see if I were a writer?
For example, I would love to see some sort of beast waiting to snatch them up as soon as their heads pop out of the ground. BOOM! Exciting fight scene.
Comment below if you think the Rule of Cool could spice up your stories!