Author Archives: Melanie Anne Phillips

What Is Dramatica?

What is Dramatica? Dramatica is a theory of story that offers both writers and critics a clear view of what story structure is and how it works. Dramatica is also the inspiration behind the line of story development software products … Continue reading

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Throughlines and How to Use Them!

Some time ago I write an article that described the difference between the two basic forms of story structure with the following phrase: You spin a tale, but you weave a story. The common expression “spinning a yarn” conjures up … Continue reading

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Your Story as a Person

All too often, authors get mired in the details of a story, trying to cram everything in and make all the pieces fit.  Characters are then seen only as individuals, so they often unintentionally overlap each other’s dramatic functions. The … Continue reading

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Finding Inspiration for Your Novel

We all know that writing is not just about assembling words, but also about assembling ideas. When we actually sit down to write, we may have our ideas all worked out in advance or we may have no idea what … Continue reading

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Finding Your Creative Time

You sit in your favorite writing chair, by the window, on the porch, or in the study. You wear your favorite tweed jacket with the leather elbow patches, or your blue jeans, or your “creative shoes.” You look around at … Continue reading

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What’s in Your Story’s Mind?

As with people, your story’s mind has different aspects. These are represented in your Genre, Theme, Plot, and Characters. Genre is the overall personality of the Story Mind. Theme represents its troubled value standards. Plot describes the methods the Story … Continue reading

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Why a “Story Mind?”

The Story Mind concept is a way of visualizing story structure that sees every story as having a mind of its own and the characters within it as facets of that overall mind.  So, one character represents the Intellect of the … Continue reading

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The Story Mind Concept

The Story Mind concept is a way of looking at a story as if all the characters were facets of a larger personality, the mind of the Story itself. To illustrate, imagine that you stepped back from your story far … Continue reading

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Tricking the Muse: The Creativity “Two-Step”

The concept behind this method of finding inspiration is quite simple, really: It is easier to come up with many ideas than it is to come up with one idea. Now that may sound counter-intuitive, but consider this… When you … Continue reading

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Writing From Your Passionate Self

We all know that a story needs a sound structure. But no one reads a book or goes to a movie to enjoy a good structure. And no author writes because he or she is driven to create a great … Continue reading

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