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Category Archives: Storytelling
By Melanie Anne Phillips This writing tip is excerpted from my book, 50 Sure-Fire Storytelling Tricks! Trick #1: Building Size (Changing Scope) This first technique holds audience interest by slowly revealing the true size of something over the course of the … Continue reading
My book, 50 Sure-Fire Storytelling Tricks!, is now available free on the Storymind.com web site, as well as in paperback and for Kindle. Click the picture to read it online for free!
There is a big difference between flashbacks where a character reminisces and flashbacks that simply transport an audience to an earlier time. If the characters are aware of the time shift, it affects their thinking, and is therefore part of … Continue reading
With this technique, the audience is unaware they are being presented things out of order. Such a story is the motion picture, Betrayal, with Ben Kingsley. The story opens and plays through the first act. We come to determine whom … Continue reading
Interest in your story can be amped up by creating a difference between what an audience is led to expect and what actually happens. A prime example occurs in the Laurel and Hardy film, The Music Box. Stan and Ollie are piano … Continue reading
Here’s a tip that can fascinate your readers or audience by setting them up to believe one thing, only to provide additional information that had been withheld and changes their loyalties once revealed. This technique can be seen very clearly … Continue reading
Message Reversals (Shifting Context to Change Message) When we shift context to create a different message , the structure remains the same, but our appreciation of it changes. This can be seen very clearly in a Twilight Zone episode entitled, … Continue reading
Meaning Reversals (Shifting Context to Change Meaning) Reversals change context. In other words, part of the meaning of anything we consider is due to its environment. The phrase, guilt by association, expresses this notion. In storytelling, we can play upon … Continue reading
Red Herrings (Changing Importance) Red herrings are designed to make something appear more or less important than it really is. Several good examples of this technique can be found in the motion picture The Fugitive. In one scene a police … Continue reading
Building Size (Changing Scope) This technique holds audience interest by revealing the true size of something over the course of the story until it can be seen to be either larger or smaller than it originally appeared. This makes things … Continue reading