Tag: plot

Paula Picked a Plighted Path of Parallel Plots

Several chapters into Paula Hawkins’ best seller The Girl on the Train, I note the thriller’s structure of three character point of view with parallel plots. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, by David Shafer, which I also read in the fall, follows the same three character parallel plot. Although the point of view and plot structure are …

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Got Plot? Or Not

Like the stepping stones in the serene Japanese Garden at the Chicago Botanic Garden, storytellers recount tales moving through a series of classic plot points. The concept of plot stretches back to the earliest recorded histories: cave drawings, tribal tattoos, epic poems, plays and theatre. Plot is the weave of our history, ancestry, immigration and …

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Diary of a Binge Reader

Donna Tartt’s, The Goldfinch, hijacked my social life for the past two weeks. And consequently, my life as a binge reader emerged once again. For months, I can exist perfectly content on my diet of short stories. Then, the unwieldy novel finds me unsatisfied in my 5000 word count stories, lures me to a world …

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Plotting for the Flaw

Stories begin with character. I usually develop a character by writing his or her thoughts, language and interactions. A more efficient writing style would first plan and construct character flaws to build the story. “Write Fiction Like a Pro,” an online class by Steve Alcorn, defines a flaw as an emotional shortcoming of the character.  …

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Hungry for a Short Story

WARNING: May cause cravings for Spanish tapas and short stories. A meal of Spanish tapas is similar to the reading of short stories. Imagine different flavorful dishes served one after another – combinations of vegetables, fish, cheeses and more. Dinner guests suffice with a few bites of each dish. Add dates, sherry and marinated olives …

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