History SoYouWantTo / WriteAMagicalGirlSeries

12th Dec '16 8:34:51 PM Prime32
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* First things off: magic. You need to establish it, and you need to know what it does. However, MagicAIsMagicA isn't too important, as it would be with other genres that use magic.

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* First things off: magic. You need to establish it, and you need to know what it does. However, MagicAIsMagicA isn't too important, as it would be with other genres that use magic. All you need to do is make it work; you don't have to explain it with anything but a few sentences.
12th Dec '16 8:33:59 PM Prime32
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* First things off: magic. You need to establish it, and you need to know what it does. However, MagicAIsMagicA isn't too important, as it would be with other genres that use magic. All you need to do is make it work; you don't have to explain it with anything but a few sentences.

to:

* First things off: magic. You need to establish it, and you need to know what it does. However, MagicAIsMagicA isn't too important, as it would be with other genres that use magic. All you need to do is make it work; you don't have to explain it with anything but a few sentences.



Does your heroine work alone, or in a group? The latter has become much more common nowadays, probably because it allows ThePowerOfFriendship to be exercised more often. If you're doing the MagicalGirlWarrior thing, you might want to throw in a MysteriousProtector or AloofAlly along with the band. (Actually, that might work for a MagicIdolSinger, too...)

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Does your heroine work alone, or in a group? The latter has become much more common nowadays, probably because it allows ThePowerOfFriendship to be exercised more often. If you're doing the MagicalGirlWarrior thing, you might want to throw in a MysteriousProtector or AloofAlly along with the band. band (Actually, that might work for a MagicIdolSinger, too...)
).


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Are magical girls the only characters with access to magic? If there's a whole WainscotSociety of adult wizards running around, then you may need a further UniqueProtagonistAsset to explain why [[AdultsAreUseless they haven't resolved the plot themselves]]. Maybe magical girls have [[UnEqualRites a different kind of magic that's stronger or better suited to the problems at hand]] (e.g. only magical girl powers can affect TheHeartless), or maybe the other magic-users just live in AnotherDimension and [[AllPowerfulBystander have no investment in what's going on]].


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* In a series where magical girls are TheChosenOne, how about a character who [[TheUnchosenOne wasn't chosen but manages to join a team of magical girls anyway]]? While a pure BadassNormal won't always make sense, she could still get her hands on a magical weapon that anyone can use, or be a WeakButSkilled user of [[UnEqualRites a more common type of magic]]. An AscendedFangirl character might even create a completely unnecessary TransformationSequence for herself, just to [[RuleOfCool emulate her heroes]].
12th Dec '16 6:08:41 PM Prime32
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* Make all the naked transformation scene jokes you want, but the fact is that, especially in the olden days, a MagicalGirl story was really a ComingOfAgeStory. You don't need to go so far as to have the main character happily abandon her powers to run off with some guy at the end, like they did in TheEighties and earlier - in fact, that really ticks modern readers off. Still, character interactions, maturation, and important milestones are good. Don't run the tropes listed under Coming Of Age Story into the ground, though. It's distracting and can get disturbing pretty fast, which isn't quite what we're looking for either.
* ThePowerOfFriendship and ThePowerOfLove ''cannot'' be thrown away or ignored. Most magical girls' powers run off the stuff. Even if they don't, they're still going to have to bail out their friends once in a while and work together. Even if she works alone, your main character shouldn't be completely shut out from the world all the time, unless she's going to learn how valuable the people around her are. This applies to normal, optimistic series, but also to the ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica imitators (or, [[OlderThanTheyThink before 2011]], the ''Literature/SailorNothing'' imitators) -- after all, the theme ran strongly through those works themselves. If you absolutely have to, subvert it, deconstruct it -- just don't ignore it.
* Related to the previous item, it's rare for magical girl shows not to have at least a hint of RomanticTwoGirlFriendship somewhere, but please don't just leave it at that if you do it. People these days are sick and tired of [[GetBackInTheCloset censorship and relationship ceilings]], and even twenty years ago, ''Manga/SailorMoon'' had a bisexual lead and a clear-cut lesbian couple introduced in the third arc.

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* Make all the naked transformation scene jokes you want, but the fact is that, especially in the olden days, a MagicalGirl story was really a ComingOfAgeStory.ComingOfAgeStory - her powers came with levels of [[JustAKid agency]], [[ImpossiblyCoolClothes fashion]], and sometimes even ''[[OlderAlterEgo size]]'' normally reserved for adults, but on her own terms, thus helping to ease the transition into full-time adulthood. You don't need to go so far as to have the main character happily abandon her powers to run off with some guy at the end, like they did in TheEighties and earlier - in fact, that really ticks modern readers off. Still, character interactions, maturation, and important milestones are good. Don't run the tropes listed under Coming Of Age Story into the ground, though. It's distracting and can get disturbing pretty fast, which isn't quite what we're looking for either.
* ThePowerOfFriendship and ThePowerOfLove ''cannot'' be thrown away or ignored. Most magical girls' powers run off the stuff. Even if they don't, they're still going to have to bail out their friends once in a while and work together. Even if she works alone, your main character shouldn't be completely shut out from the world all the time, unless she's going to learn how valuable the people around her are. This applies to normal, optimistic series, but also to the ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'' imitators (or, [[OlderThanTheyThink before 2011]], the ''Literature/SailorNothing'' imitators) -- after all, the theme ran strongly through those works themselves. If you absolutely have to, subvert it, deconstruct it -- just don't ignore it.
* Related to the previous item, it's rare for magical girl shows not to have at least a hint of RomanticTwoGirlFriendship somewhere, but please don't just leave it at that if you do it. People these days are sick and tired of [[GetBackInTheCloset censorship and relationship ceilings]], and even twenty years ago, ''Manga/SailorMoon'' had a bisexual lead and a clear-cut lesbian couple introduced in the third arc.
it.



* To be extremely blunt, a {{Magic Idol Singer}}'s story cannot carry the plot of a multi-episode series on its own; it needs help. To understand why, compare the stories in this sub-genre to performing-arts stories that ''don't'' involve magic. In those stories, the heroine bleeds for her craft - she constantly hones her skills, seeks out new teachers to expand her horizons, enters high-stakes competitions, practices late into the night, etc. By contrast, the MagicIdolSinger gains her singing, dancing ability, and song lyrics/music through magic. There's no need to practice or create anything; she doesn't need to work hard when she can effortlessly soar to the top of the pop scene in a single bound. In fact, the MagicIdolSinger story can be told in the space of a single episode: girl gets magical powers, gets discovered, instantly becomes famous and successful with minimal effort, the end. While you can throw in a jealous female rival, a love interest (or several), a few festivals and competitions, and some scandal to spice things up a bit, that's about the limit - it's hard to wring a multi-episode plot out of a premise that revolves around instant gratification. So you have to pad the story with other things. ''Manga/FullMoonOSagashite'' spends a lot of time focusing on the shinigami and their backstories, several love triangles, and Mitsuki's backstory (Mitsuki also writes her own songs, and often must work within parameters mandated by her agency, avoiding too much instant gratifcation), while ''Anime/MermaidMelodyPichiPichiPitch'' combines MagicIdolSinger with MagicalGirlWarrior, ''Anime/HimeChenOtogiChikkuIdolLilpri'' uses a similar tactic with its "rescue Fairyland by collecting PlotCoupons" plot, and ''WesternAnimation/{{Jem}}'' focuses on the Starlight Girls and the other members of Jem's band (as well as the members of the two rival bands) as much as Jem. Even ''Anime/MagicalAngelCreamyMami'' is only about 50% idol-singer, with the rest being random supernatural SliceOfLife adventures. So don't just focus on the IdolSinger part, add a few sub-plots -- they may have nothing whatsoever to do with the story, but they'll hold the audience's attention, and stop them from getting bored.

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* To be extremely blunt, a {{Magic Idol Singer}}'s story cannot carry the plot of a multi-episode series on its own; it needs help. To understand why, compare the MagicIdolSinger stories in this sub-genre to performing-arts stories that ''don't'' involve magic. In those stories, can run out of steam very quickly, since many of the heroine bleeds usual driving factors for her craft - she constantly hones a performer (honing her skills, seeks seeking out new teachers to expand her horizons, enters entering high-stakes competitions, practices practicing late into the night, etc. By contrast, the MagicIdolSinger gains her singing, dancing ability, and song lyrics/music through magic. There's no need to practice or create anything; she doesn't need to work hard etc.) are made redundant when she can effortlessly soar to the top of the pop scene in a single bound. In fact, the MagicIdolSinger story can be told in the space of a single episode: girl gets magical powers, gets discovered, instantly becomes famous and successful with minimal effort, the end.[[HardWorkHardlyWorks gains everything she needs through magic]]. While you can throw in a jealous female rival, a love interest (or several), a few festivals and competitions, and some scandal to spice things up a bit, that's about the limit - it's hard to wring a multi-episode plot out of a premise that revolves around instant gratification. So you have to pad the story with other things. ''Manga/FullMoonOSagashite'' spends a lot of time focusing on the shinigami and their backstories, several love triangles, and Mitsuki's backstory (Mitsuki also writes her own songs, and often must work within parameters mandated by her agency, avoiding too much instant gratifcation), while ''Anime/MermaidMelodyPichiPichiPitch'' combines As such, successful MagicIdolSinger with MagicalGirlWarrior, ''Anime/HimeChenOtogiChikkuIdolLilpri'' uses stories are generally either one-shots or have a similar tactic with few ongoing subplots to pad things out - mixing in CuteWitch or MagicalGirlWarrior elements is popular, as is using an EnsembleCast.
* Given all the emphasis on ThePowerOfFriendship, ThePowerOfLove, and [[ComingOfAgeStory youths getting a taste of adult responsibility]], it's not uncommon for magical girls to end up in a RomanticTwoGirlFriendship. However, this can have UnfortunateImplications if the [[HomoeroticSubtext subtext]] is too strong and it [[RelationshipWritingFumble comes across as]] a [[SchoolgirlLesbians full-blown lesbian romance]]... that the characters then [[CureYourGays "grow out of"]]. Understand ''why'' characters are written this way and [[TropesAreTools what it can contribute to the story]], rather than just [[FollowTheLeader doing it for
its "rescue Fairyland by collecting PlotCoupons" plot, and ''WesternAnimation/{{Jem}}'' focuses on the Starlight Girls and the other members of Jem's band (as well as the members of the two rival bands) as much as Jem. Even ''Anime/MagicalAngelCreamyMami'' is only about 50% idol-singer, with the rest being random supernatural SliceOfLife adventures. So own sake]]. If you want lesbians you don't just focus on need to [[HideYourLesbians be sly about it]] - even in the IdolSinger part, add 90s, ''Manga/SailorMoon'' had a few sub-plots -- they may have nothing whatsoever to do with bisexual lead and a clear-cut lesbian couple introduced in the story, but they'll hold the audience's attention, and stop them from getting bored.
third arc.


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4th Dec '16 1:03:43 AM Laevatein
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* Just because your protagonists are young girls doesn't mean your show has to be a {{Shoujo}} series. ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'' proves you can write a magical girl series with plenty of action to appeal to the older male crowd.
3rd Dec '16 2:34:45 PM stickyheaders
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* Just because your protagonists are young girls doesn't mean your show has to be a {{Shoujo}} series. ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'' proves you can write a magical girl series with plenty of action to appeal to the older male crowd. And {{hentai}} with a MagicalGirl theme prove you can write a magical girl series with another kind of ''action'' to appeal to the older male crowd (though see above in "General Advice" for the pitfalls in working with that subgenre).
2nd Nov '16 7:36:28 AM troper101
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* Why not make the heroine's love interest be, instead of a MysteriousProtector DistressedDude, [[DatingCatwoman a villain]] from the QuirkyMinibossSquad? It could provide some interesting CharacterDevelopment for both parties involved, and maybe add in a factor of LoveRedeems. (The MysteriousProtector doesn't necessarily have to be male, either.)

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* Why not make the heroine's love interest be, instead of a MysteriousProtector DistressedDude, [[DatingCatwoman a villain]] from the QuirkyMinibossSquad? It could provide some interesting CharacterDevelopment for both parties involved, and maybe add in a factor of LoveRedeems. (The MysteriousProtector love interest in general doesn't necessarily have to be male, either.)
2nd Nov '16 7:31:16 AM troper101
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* In an even more similar vein have the seasoned magical girl be the mentor to an upcoming magical girl. In other magical girl series it usually focuses on the magical girl that just starts out in her career, but having the magical girl be the mentor would add a whole new layer to the story and has CharacterDevelopment potential for both parties (the CynicalMentor becomes a bit more idealistic and the WideEyedIdealist becomes more balanced in perspective).

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* In an even more similar vein have the seasoned magical girl be the mentor to an upcoming magical girl. In other magical girl series it usually focuses on the magical girl that just starts out in her career, but having the magical girl be the mentor would add a whole new layer to the story and has CharacterDevelopment potential for both parties (the CynicalMentor becomes a bit more idealistic hopeful and the WideEyedIdealist becomes more balanced in perspective).grounded).
2nd Nov '16 7:28:23 AM troper101
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* Older magical girls with families are a largely unexplored territory. Maybe a mahou shoujo has a mother who also took up the calling, and who may team up with her when the going gets really serious.

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* Older magical girls with families are a largely unexplored territory. Maybe a mahou shoujo magical girl has a mother who also took up the calling, and who may team up with her when the going gets really serious.



* Why not make the heroine's love interest be, instead of a MysteriousProtector DistressedDude, [[DatingCatwoman a villain]] from the QuirkyMinibossSquad? It could provide some interesting CharacterDevelopment for both parties involved, and maybe add in a factor of LoveRedeems.

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* Why not make the heroine's love interest be, instead of a MysteriousProtector DistressedDude, [[DatingCatwoman a villain]] from the QuirkyMinibossSquad? It could provide some interesting CharacterDevelopment for both parties involved, and maybe add in a factor of LoveRedeems. (The MysteriousProtector doesn't necessarily have to be male, either.)



*** Or to further make the example above more complex, why not make the MysteriousProtector a female?



* In an even more similar vein have the seasoned magical girl be the mentor to an upcoming magical girl. In other magical girl series it usually focuses on the magical girl that just starts out in her career but having the magical girl be the mentor would add a whole new layer to the story. Especially if she starts out as the CynicalMentor to the WideEyedIdealist but later ends up, while not too idealist, starts to see the world a little better while in return grooms the young magical girl apprentice into a GuileHero.

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* In an even more similar vein have the seasoned magical girl be the mentor to an upcoming magical girl. In other magical girl series it usually focuses on the magical girl that just starts out in her career career, but having the magical girl be the mentor would add a whole new layer to the story. Especially if she starts out as the story and has CharacterDevelopment potential for both parties (the CynicalMentor to becomes a bit more idealistic and the WideEyedIdealist but later ends up, while not too idealist, starts to see the world a little better while becomes more balanced in return grooms the young magical girl apprentice into a GuileHero.
perspective).
30th Oct '16 12:52:52 PM N1KF
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* Some people are going to bash your show without having watched it. Just accept it. Your show can still last. ''Manga/WeddingPeach'' has somewhat of a fanbase, even though a lot of people blindly assume it's all about how marriage is important, when it's more about how love is important (and that marriage isn't right when there isn't love).

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* Some people are going to bash your show [[ComplainingAboutShowsYouDontWatch without having watched it.it]]. Just accept it. Your show can still last. ''Manga/WeddingPeach'' has somewhat of a fanbase, even though a lot of people blindly assume it's all about how marriage is important, when it's more about how love is important (and that marriage isn't right when there isn't love).



** In MagicIdolSinger or romance-themed CuteWitch stories, hold off on using this trope until your heroine has some CharacterDevelopment. Unlike MagicalGirlWarrior, the characters in this group aren't loaded with world-saving responsibility. If they ''really'' wanted to be normal, then you wouldn't have the story at all. But after CharacterDevelopment, it's possible that some events will make her question herself, for example is she really worthy to enjoy the fame or love, or it it only because she's lucky enough to have the magic power? It's most likely that she will try to prove her worth without using her power. How it turns out should lead to more CharacterDevelopment.
** For the classic "CuteWitch helping people" story...just don't use this trope, you can't justify it without changing the genre into something DarkerAndEdgier. Like romance-themed CuteWitch, this kind of heroine alway has a choice in using her magic or not. In fact, she usually gains the power (if she isn't born with it) because whoever granted it recognized her as a good girl, and believed that she would use it for the benefit of others. So pulling this trope is simply a case of TookALevelInJerkass for your heroine. And if you want to do that, there is no reason to write this kind of story to start with.

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** In MagicIdolSinger or romance-themed CuteWitch stories, hold off on using this trope until your heroine has some CharacterDevelopment. Unlike MagicalGirlWarrior, the characters in this group aren't loaded with world-saving responsibility. If they ''really'' wanted to be normal, then you wouldn't have the story at all. But after CharacterDevelopment, Character Development, it's possible that some events will make her question herself, for example is she really worthy to enjoy the fame or love, or it it only because she's lucky enough to have the magic power? It's most likely that she will try to prove her worth without using her power. How it turns out should lead to more CharacterDevelopment.
Character Development.
** For the classic "CuteWitch helping people" story...just don't use this trope, you can't justify it without changing the genre into something DarkerAndEdgier. Like romance-themed CuteWitch, Cute Witch, this kind of heroine alway has a choice in using her magic or not. In fact, she usually gains the power (if she isn't born with it) because whoever granted it recognized her as a good girl, and believed that she would use it for the benefit of others. So pulling this trope is simply a case of TookALevelInJerkass for your heroine. And if you want to do that, there is no reason to write this kind of story to start with.



* In the same vein as the above, how about a seasoned magical girl who originally was only solo and now suddenly has a team to work with. The SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism can be explored in depth this way thanks to the seasoned MG being more cynical due to her experiences, while the rest of the team are raw rookies who are [[WideEyedIdealist Wide Eyed Idealists]].

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* In the same vein as the above, how about a seasoned magical girl who originally was only solo and now suddenly has a team to work with. with? The SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism can be explored in depth this way thanks to the seasoned MG being more cynical due to her experiences, while the rest of the team are raw rookies who are [[WideEyedIdealist Wide Eyed Wide-Eyed Idealists]].



Hearts. Stars. Things that [[MerchandiseDriven look like plastic]]? [[MineralMacGuffin Jewels never go out of style.]]

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Hearts. Stars. Things that [[MerchandiseDriven look like plastic]]? [[MineralMacGuffin Jewels Jewels]] never go out of style.]]
style.



These kinds of stories tend to be set in the present day, usually in a big city. [[TokyoIsTheCenterOfTheUniverse Tokyo is popular.]]

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These kinds of stories tend to be set in the present day, usually in a big city. [[TokyoIsTheCenterOfTheUniverse Tokyo is popular.]]
popular]].



[[MerchandiseDriven Cute, pink, plastic weapons and accessories are a must.]] In a Cute Witch series, you could use some typical witch accessories - usually for magic purposes, but maybe when she's fretting over the lunch she's making for that cute boy in her class, she's cooking it in a big pink cauldron with heart-shaped jewels on the sides. In a Magic Idol Singer series, showy microphones and cute stage show props should be within arm's reach. In a Magical Girl Warrior series, {{Improbable Weapon User}}s are the most popular, but the LadyOfWar might have a glowy or jewel-studded sword. All three types like wands.

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[[MerchandiseDriven Cute, pink, plastic weapons and accessories accessories]] are a must.]] must. In a Cute Witch series, you could use some typical witch accessories - usually for magic purposes, but maybe when she's fretting over the lunch she's making for that cute boy in her class, she's cooking it in a big pink cauldron with heart-shaped jewels on the sides. In a Magic Idol Singer series, showy microphones and cute stage show props should be within arm's reach. In a Magical Girl Warrior series, {{Improbable Weapon User}}s are the most popular, but the LadyOfWar might have a glowy or jewel-studded sword. All three types like wands.



* The ''PrettyCure'' franchise is good for a post-modern feel, twisting, subverting and playing with the genre tropes all over the place. Their girls fist-fight, have WonderTwinPowers (at least for the first two continuities), and take ThePowerOfFriendship to a [[RomanticTwoGirlFriendship whole new level.]]

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* The ''PrettyCure'' franchise is good for a post-modern feel, twisting, subverting and playing with the genre tropes all over the place. Their girls fist-fight, have WonderTwinPowers (at least for the first two continuities), and take ThePowerOfFriendship to a [[RomanticTwoGirlFriendship whole new level.]]level]].
20th Oct '16 7:05:13 AM Jisu
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The MagicalGirl genre may have begun with a handful of old-school manga aimed at being ''Series/{{Bewitched}}'' [[RecycledInSpace For Kids]], but throughout its history, it's seen a lot of changes, typical plots evolving from "a kindhearted CuteWitch does anonymous good deeds in order to pass her MagicalGirlQueenlinessTest" to "an elementary-school-aged dreamer uses OlderAlterEgo to become an IdolSinger" to "a group of {{Magical Girl Warrior}}s fights off DemonicInvaders" -- and the fun thing about it is that every single one of these plots remains viable for a story. You can even mix and match them with each other or with other genres if you really feel like it. And hey, it'll be fun!

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The MagicalGirl genre may have begun with a handful of old-school manga aimed at being ''Series/{{Bewitched}}'' [[RecycledInSpace For Kids]], but throughout its history, it's seen a lot of changes, typical plots evolving from "a kindhearted CuteWitch does anonymous good deeds in order to pass her MagicalGirlQueenlinessTest" to "an elementary-school-aged dreamer uses an OlderAlterEgo to become an IdolSinger" to "a group of {{Magical Girl Warrior}}s fights off DemonicInvaders" -- and the fun thing about it is that every single one of these plots remains viable for a story. You can even mix and match them with each other or with other genres if you really feel like it. And hey, it'll be fun!



* Give us a reason to care: If your magical girl has a secret identity exposed, what would happen? How would her parents react? What would her boyfriend say? What would their classmates say? Would they approve? If your heroine(s) has nothing to lose or [[TragicOneShotCharacter some random character we never had time to care about dies]], the audience simply won't care. It doesn't matter how [[RedShirt many people]] a villain kills or how many big secrets are revealed -- if no emotions are involved, it won't be interesting, no matter how dramatic the situation is.

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* Give us a reason to care: If your magical girl has a secret identity exposed, what would happen? How would her parents react? What would her boyfriend say? What would their classmates say? Would they approve? If your heroine(s) has nothing to lose or [[TragicOneShotCharacter some random character we never had time to care about dies]], the audience simply won't care. It doesn't matter how [[RedShirt how many people]] a villain kills or how many big secrets are revealed -- if no emotions are involved, it won't be interesting, no matter how dramatic the situation is.



* Be very careful if you want to study magical girl works from {{hentai}}/{{eroge}}, they're aimed at a different fandom and will be DarkerAndEdgier than their generic counterpart -- and as with a lot of hentai, rape scenes are a ''very'' common occurrence and naughty tentacles are a very common feature in these titles, so the cutesy facade won't last long and may even dip into {{squick}} or {{gorn}}. That being said, they tend to be PornWithPlot (the {{eroge}} are mostly VisualNovel) and you may be surprised by how much you can learn from them.

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* Be very careful if you want to study magical girl works from {{hentai}}/{{eroge}}, {{hentai}}''/''{{eroge}}, they're aimed at a different fandom and will be DarkerAndEdgier than their generic counterpart -- and as with a lot of hentai, rape scenes are a ''very'' common occurrence and naughty tentacles are a very common feature in these titles, so the cutesy facade won't last long and may even dip into {{squick}} or {{gorn}}. That being said, they tend to be PornWithPlot (the {{eroge}} are mostly VisualNovel) and you may be surprised by how much you can learn from them.{{gorn}}.



* ThePowerOfFriendship and ThePowerOfLove ''cannot'' be thrown away or ignored. Most magical girls' powers run off the stuff. Even if they don't, they're still going to have to bail out their friends once in a while and work together. Even if she works alone, your main character shouldn't be completely shut out from the world all the time, unless she's going to learn how valuable the people around her are. This applies to normal, optimistic series, but also to the ''Literature/SailorNothing'' imitators -- after all, the theme ran strongly through ''Sailor Nothing'' itself. If you absolutely have to, subvert it, deconstruct it -- just don't ignore it.
* Related to the previous item, it's rare for magical girl shows not to have at least a hint of RomanticTwoGirlFriendship somewhere. Mainstream series tend to either have the main character involved in one or keep it between secondary characters only, but [[TokenYuriGirls rarely have more than two]] of such relationships going on at the same time. If you decide to focus on the main character, lots of mainstream series are [[GetBackInTheCloset subtle about it]]. A popular way is to have a {{fangirl}} pining for the main character, while the lead herself is mostly oblivious to the romantic overtones (like Tomoyo to Sakura in ''Manga/CardCaptorSakura''). Another way is to make the feelings mutual, but to introduce a RelationshipCeiling (Honoka and Nagisa from ''Anime/FutariWaPrettyCure''). The latter is rather tricky, as it can lead to confusion with the audience -- unless you aim for that. Secondary characters are fair game and you can crank up the LesYay between them quite a bit (see Michiru and Haruka from ''Franchise/SailorMoon''), but it really depends on the setting and target audience. Then again, if you're sick and tired of HideYourLesbians and GetBackInTheCloset and you really want to give the pairing equal footing with the het ships, and no one's stopping you, why not? A number of ''PrettyCure'' fanfics capitalize upon the Cureshipping tendencies in the show by making out-and-out canon ships between the Cures that are treated equally to the het pairings, from side characters (Hanae and Ikuko from ''Fanfic/PrettyCurePerfumePreppy'', Akira and Sora from ''Fanfic/ShiningPrettyCure'') to the leads (Asa and Yoko from ''Fanfic/FutariWaPrettyCureBlueMoon'').

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* ThePowerOfFriendship and ThePowerOfLove ''cannot'' be thrown away or ignored. Most magical girls' powers run off the stuff. Even if they don't, they're still going to have to bail out their friends once in a while and work together. Even if she works alone, your main character shouldn't be completely shut out from the world all the time, unless she's going to learn how valuable the people around her are. This applies to normal, optimistic series, but also to the ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica imitators (or, [[OlderThanTheyThink before 2011]], the ''Literature/SailorNothing'' imitators imitators) -- after all, the theme ran strongly through ''Sailor Nothing'' itself.those works themselves. If you absolutely have to, subvert it, deconstruct it -- just don't ignore it.
* Related to the previous item, it's rare for magical girl shows not to have at least a hint of RomanticTwoGirlFriendship somewhere. Mainstream series tend to either have the main character involved in one or keep it between secondary characters only, somewhere, but [[TokenYuriGirls rarely have more than two]] of such relationships going on please don't just leave it at the same time. If that if you decide to focus on the main character, lots of mainstream series do it. People these days are sick and tired of [[GetBackInTheCloset subtle about it]]. A popular way is to have censorship and relationship ceilings]], and even twenty years ago, ''Manga/SailorMoon'' had a {{fangirl}} pining for the main character, while the bisexual lead herself is mostly oblivious to the romantic overtones (like Tomoyo to Sakura in ''Manga/CardCaptorSakura''). Another way is to make the feelings mutual, but to introduce a RelationshipCeiling (Honoka and Nagisa from ''Anime/FutariWaPrettyCure''). The latter is rather tricky, as it can lead to confusion with the audience -- unless you aim for that. Secondary characters are fair game and you can crank up the LesYay between them quite a bit (see Michiru and Haruka from ''Franchise/SailorMoon''), but it really depends on the setting and target audience. Then again, if you're sick and tired of HideYourLesbians and GetBackInTheCloset and you really want to give the pairing equal footing with the het ships, and no one's stopping you, why not? A number of ''PrettyCure'' fanfics capitalize upon the Cureshipping tendencies clear-cut lesbian couple introduced in the show by making out-and-out canon ships between the Cures that are treated equally to the het pairings, from side characters (Hanae and Ikuko from ''Fanfic/PrettyCurePerfumePreppy'', Akira and Sora from ''Fanfic/ShiningPrettyCure'') to the leads (Asa and Yoko from ''Fanfic/FutariWaPrettyCureBlueMoon'').third arc.



Want to throw out the genre tropes and instead use the plot devices from HumongousMecha series? How about {{shounen}} battle series? Or maybe you want to send in a DeconstructorFleet? These can be done extremely well to a wide reception, but we only know this because of ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'', ''Anime/MaiHime'', ''Literature/SailorNothing'', and ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'', in that order. If you want to go off the beaten path, don't just rely on novelty - do it as well as they did.

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Want to throw out the genre tropes and instead use the plot devices from HumongousMecha series? How about {{shounen}} battle series? Or maybe you want to send in a DeconstructorFleet? DeconstructorFleet, or just make a darker series? These can be done extremely well to a wide reception, but we only know this because of ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'', ''Anime/MaiHime'', ''Literature/SailorNothing'', and ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'', in that order. If you want to go off the beaten path, don't just rely on novelty - do it as well as they did.
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* Moving to the cynical end of the SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism is for ''Literature/SailorNothing'', ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'' and DarkFic. If you want to occupy that spot yourself, do something they didn't do. You'll be written off as a DarkerAndEdgier mindless childhood-corruptor otherwise.

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* Moving to the cynical end of the SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism is for ''Literature/SailorNothing'', ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'' SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism? It should be noted that ''Madoka'' spawned a whole slew of dark shows already, so just putting some death and DarkFic.hopelessness in won't help your cause without substance. If you want to occupy that spot yourself, do something they didn't do. You'll be written off as a DarkerAndEdgier mindless childhood-corruptor otherwise.



* For extra humor, try adding a GenderBender slant - the hero is a boy who turns into a girl whenever he transforms to fight evil. Or you could play the gender inversion straight and have a serious story featuring a male witch or idol singer or warrior, but remember some of the motifs, costumes and props suggested here won't apply.
** Indifferent if it's for comedic or serious value, how going full straight with the above and have a cross-dressing character in the cast? Apart from cross-dressers of either gender being highly famous, it adds another layer of "What if the character gets found out?" and "Why does the character actually act this way?"
** One idea that hasn't been explored much in magical girl stories is the idea of {{transgender}} magical girls. How about a transgender girl who becomes a magical girl, or a transboy who feels he can't come out due to his duties as a magical girl? Keep in mind that this plot would require a lot of research, as well as effort to avoid stereotypes and keep the characters from being defined by their status as transgender.
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