Here’s a great book for all the writers in our awesome blogging community!
Damn Fine Story: Mastering the Tools of a Powerful Narrative (Release Date: October 17, 2017)
What do Luke Skywalker, John McClane, and a lonely dog on Ho’okipa Beach have in common?
Simply put, we care about them.
Great storytelling is making readers care about your characters, the choices they make, and what happens to them. It’s making your audience feel the tension and emotion of a situation right alongside your protagonist. And to tell a damn fine story, you need to understand why and how that caring happens.
Using a mix of personal stories, pop fiction examples, and traditional storytelling terms, New York Times best-selling author Chuck Wendig will help you internalize the feel of powerful storytelling. In Damn Fine Story, you’ll explore:
- Fretytag’s Pyramid for visualizing story structure—and when to break away from traditional storytelling forms
- Character relationships and interactions as the basis of every strong plot—no matter the form or genre
- Rising and falling tension that pulls the audience through to the climax and conclusion of the story
- Developing themes as a way to craft characters with depth
Whether you’re writing a novel, screenplay, video game, comic, or even if you just like to tell stories to your friends and family over dinner, this funny and informative guide is chock-full of examples about the art and craft of storytelling—and how to write a damn fine story of your own.
Whether you are a seasoned raconteur or want to ratchet up your game, get your paws on this book ASAP. Why? Well, for one, you’ll find out what’s up with the image on the cover, since it relates to one of Wendig’s many entertaining stories (while giving us tips on how to tell our own). Filled with side-splitting footnotes and asides, you won’t feel like you’re being schooled. Enriched with some Star Wars, Die Hard, and Princess Bride examples (among other universal favorites), Wendig puts concrete and practical tools into your hands. In fact, the appendix entitled “50 Storytelling Tips” is worth its weight in gold alone.
And, Wendig takes his own advice in this how-to. He urges us to “always be interesting”, to “be funny sometimes”, and to not waste the audience’s time. Trust me, not one second of your time is wasted here. (If you have no sense of humor, you can always skip the footnotes. So, there’s that.)
For me, this guide is a must-read, and a must-reread, that will serve as a reference right near my writing desk. Wendig puts his unique spin on some craft techniques you may already be familiar with. I found myself making notes and underlining valuable passages throughout the book, but even more so in the second half. The section on the building blocks of tension, the one on character motivation—I can’t thank Wendig enough for those. He covers almost every aspect of craft, including pacing, dialogue, character arcs, themes…and symbols, motifs—and on and on. Get your highlighter handy!
If I carry on anymore, I run the risk of sounding like Wendig paid me to write this review. Insert joke here. (Apparently, I need to brush up on “being funny sometimes”). Long story short, if you are in the market for a guide to writing, look no further. Added bonus: Wendig gives some damn fine pep talks to get you off your metaphorical ass and pen that creative work you’ve been putting off. “Don’t worry about failing. We all fail. The only way you lose it by quitting.” *mic drop*