It’s one of the oldest writing “rules” in the book, and probably dates back to the time they were carving stories on stone tablets: Show don’t tell. You hear this all the time. Here’s what “show don’t tell” means. UPDATED 5/30/19 What show don’t tell means With the understanding that “if it works it works,” […]
For today’s Can I Get a Ruling: the dread “quotation marks” for “emphasis.” As I’m sure you all know, quotation marks either denote a direct quote or to show irony or euphemism. They’re not used for emphasis. So…. I don’t care what your sign says, I’m not eating your “fresh” mozzarella. The improper use of […]
By: Victoria Mixon PLOT Plots are myriad, but plot structure is simple: hook, development (with backstory interwoven), climax. Shakespeare’s five-act play, Syd Field’s three-act story, Freytag’s triangle (although Freytag called complications climax and climax resolution—causing untold confusion): like a holograph, hook-development-climax works on all levels, from the big picture down through chapters, sequences, scenes, to […]
Very quickly in the comment thread from yesterday’s post on revisions, Rick Daley raised an interesting revision checklist question: “Can you sit back and read through it without a compulsive need to continue changing it?” This got me to thinking: when do you know you’re finished with revisions? When a writer is faced with a […]
Here’s the thing about book concepts: originality is (somewhat) overrated. There have been millions of books written in the course of human history. Before there were books there were plays, and before the were plays there were stories told around the campfire, and before there were stories around the campfire there were aliens who implanted […]
Lupina had a great idea for a You Tell Me: What are your favorite books on writing? I’ll kick it off with a nod to Robert McKee’s STORY. Yes, it’s about screenplays, but I haven’t seen a better breakdown of how to create a great plot. What’s your favorite?