Category Archives: Writing Tip of the Day

Dramatica Theory (Annotated) Part 9 “Author’s Intent”

Excerpted from the book, Dramatica: A New Theory of Story Simply having a feeling or a point of view does not an author make. One becomes an author the moment one establishes an intent to communicate. Usually some intrigu- ing … Continue reading

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Introduction to Archetypes

Archetypes are not inventions, but representations of elemental human qualities.  In fact each embodies a family of qualities not unlike families of elements in the periodic table.  It is as if we put all the Rare Earth elements into one … Continue reading

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Write Your Novel Step by Step (2) – “Get Out of My Head!”

When beginning a new novel, writers are often faced with one of two initial problems that hinders them right from the get go.  One – sometimes you have a story concept but can’t think of what to do with it. … Continue reading

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Write Your Novel Step by Step (1) – Stages of Writing a Novel

Writers often begin the novel development process by thinking about what their story needs: a main character/protagonist/hero, a solid theme, a riveting plot and, of course, to meet all the touch points of their genre. Because this is just the … Continue reading

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Characters – The Attributes of Age

Introduction Writers tend to create characters that are more or less the same age as themselves. On the one hand, this follows the old adage that one should write about what one knows. But in real life, we encounter people … Continue reading

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How to Avoid the “Genre Trap”

A common misconception sees genre as a fixed list of dramatic requirements or a rigid structural template from which there can be no deviation. Writers laboring under these restrictions often find themselves boxed-in creatively. They become snared in the Genre … Continue reading

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Drop Exposition through Arguments

Here’s a short one… A person talking is often boring. People arguing are often compelling. If you have to drop exposition, try to do it in the back and forth barbs of an argument. Let the characters use the information … Continue reading

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Screenwriting Tip: Don’t say it if you can show it!

Excerpted from: 50 Sure-Fire Storytelling Tricks! By Melanie Anne Phillips Available in Paperback and for Kindle   Movies are a visual medium. The strongest impact is created by what is seen, not what is said. Although we might marvel at well-written … Continue reading

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Writing with Red Herrings

Excerpted from: 50 Sure-Fire Storytelling Tricks! By Melanie Anne Phillips Available in Paperback and for Kindle   The old expression, “A Red Herring,” means something that is intentionally misleading. In storytelling, a red herring is a scene, which is set up … Continue reading

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Screenwriting Tip: Break Up Monologues…

Excerpted from: 50 Sure-Fire Storytelling Tricks! By Melanie Anne Phillips Available in Paperback and for Kindle   There are some moments in some movies in which a long monolog by a single individual works well. Any inspiring public speech, for example, … Continue reading

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