How to Deflate a Bully

How to Deflate a Bully In novels, memoirs and screenplays, bullies create struggle, angst, frustration, setbacks and emotion. Your protagonist meets lots of bullies / antagonists on her way toward her goal and, when she resists, ignores, turns from, runs from, gives in to the bullies, she suffers. Happens in our own lives, too. Think of an antagonist in your life right now. Someone or something or a belief or personal trait that prevents, restricts, limits, bullies you from what you most … [Read more...]

3 Steps to Plot a New Story

New year New beginnings New story First, Plot 3 Steps How In 3 easy steps, learn how to plot a new story. 1) Brainstorm how all three major plot lines in your story evolve from the beginning into the middle and all the way to the end of the story, focusing first on the Energetic Markers 2) Imagine how your protagonist's traits change / transform over the course of your novel as a result of the dramatic action. Use that to create a transformation summary for the protagonist of your … [Read more...]

5 Reasons to Write Stories Simultaneously

Write Multiple Stories Simultaneously  5 best reasons why  You throw yourself into your story. You dream about your characters, bond with them and give your story all your time, resources and attention. Trouble is, by focusing on only one story at a time, you're much more likely to cling to your story well beyond what's healthy for either one of you. Opening yourself to edits becomes challenging. Accepting you're done all you proves difficult. Letting go is impossible. You become so … [Read more...]

Writing a Story is Like Riding a Wave

  The Universal Story in the world around me How writing a story is like riding a wave Living by the ocean, water and waves carry great significance. When I was a kid learning to surf, I was taught to wait for the 7th wave with the promise that the 7th was always the biggest. The pattern of how this happens mirrors the rhythm of the Universal Story.  Waves travel from afar, move through solid objects and often piggyback on other waves. Scenes travel out of the past, move through time and … [Read more...]

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

The Goldfinch by Donna TarttThe difference betweenthe inciting incident and the end of the beginning A writer asks: isn't the inciting incident of an example I use -- the Pulitizer Prize winning The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt -- when he steals the painting (and well before the the End of the Beginning and 1st Energetic Marker at the 1/4 mark)? Yes, the dramatic action inciting incident is when he steals The Goldfinch in the museum. His action energizes the external action, changing the ordinary … [Read more...]