The Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations The Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations is a descriptive list which was created by Georges Polti to categorize every dramatic situation that might occur in a story or performance. To do this Polti analyzed classical Greek texts, plus classical and contemporaneous French works. He also analyzed a handful of non-French authors. In his introduction, Polti claims to be continuing the work of Carlo Gozzi, who also identified 36 situations. Publication history “Gozzi maintained that there can be but thirty-six tragic situations. Accents and Dialects Public Domain / CIA NOTE: This guide uses the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). For information about this notation, please visit my page of International Phonetic Alphabet Resources. There are obviously many North American accents.
3 Types of Character Arcs: Choose the Best for Your Novel How Does Your Character Change? You know your character must change somehow over the course of your novel. But how? And more than that, how do you sync the changes with the external plot? Words and Phrases Coined by Shakespeare Words and Phrases Coined by Shakespeare NOTE: This list (including some of the errors I originally made) is found in several other places online. That's fine, but I've asked that folks who want this on their own sites mention that I am the original compiler. For many English-speakers, the following phrases are familiar enough to be considered common expressions, proverbs, and/or clichés. All of them originated with or were popularized by Shakespeare. Monomyth Joseph Campbell's monomyth, or the hero's journey, is a basic pattern that its proponents argue is found in many narratives from around the world. This widely distributed pattern was described by Campbell in The Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949). Campbell, an enthusiast of novelist James Joyce, borrowed the term monomyth from Joyce's Finnegans Wake. Campbell held that numerous myths from disparate times and regions share fundamental structures and stages, which he summarized in The Hero with a Thousand Faces: A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.
Speech Patterns NEW YORK — Psychopaths are known to be wily and manipulative, but even so, they unconsciously betray themselves, according to scientists who have looked for patterns in convicted murderers' speech as they described their crimes. The researchers interviewed 52 convicted murderers, 14 of them ranked as psychopaths according to the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised, a 20-item assessment, and asked them to describe their crimes in detail. Using computer programs to analyze what the men said, the researchers found that those with psychopathic scores showed a lack of emotion, spoke in terms of cause-and-effect when describing their crimes, and focused their attention on basic needs, such as food, drink and money. [10 Contested Death Penalty Cases]
6 Ways to Create Riveting Conflict in Your Story Who says conflict is a bad thing? Who says world peace is the most important goal of humanity? Who says arguing with your little brother when you’re a kid means you’ll grow up to be an ill-mannered ruffian? Not a writer, that’s for sure! Flirting and Writing Dialogue I love exposition: flowing sentences, tight action, enveloping description. Prose is great. But for the past couple of weeks, I’ve been wondering what makes dialogue tick. Well-written dialogue is not conversation. Have you ever listened to the way people speak? How to Rock Your Story's Tension photo cred: © Sergei Zolkin via Unsplash Today we’re talkin’ tension. No matter your story’s plot or genre, you need to know how to nail tension in your fiction.
Perception and Language Storytelling is a buzzword with lots of different interpretations. Either the internet is killing stories, or it’s the best thing to happen to them since the printing press. Article Continues Below Stories have been around as long as we have, helping us understand our world and ourselves. The Subplot - Not Second Place, but Side by Side There is one element in plotting our story that we sometimes forget or neglect—the subplot. The subplot is what rounds out a novel or screenplay, informing it with another shade of emotional colour to deliver a satisfying and entertaining experience. It is the parallel narrative that allows the writer to explore theme, deepen characterisation, add tension or allow some relief. The subplot helps us understand the characters a bit better and gives a better sense of pace. Love and other pursuits.
Strong Authorial Voice By Nicholas So you've got a great novel in the works. It's got everything your audience could ask for - orcs and goblins, champions and villains, flashy adventures and passionate romance. Now the question is not what to write but how to write it; now comes the question of voice. Voice, like personality, is a nebulous term, and it has as many facets. Your diction, your syntax, and the way you approach description and exposition affect your voice.
How a Scene List Can Change Your Novel-Writing Life By the end of this post you will have a nagging urge to use an excel spreadsheet. Don’t make that face—I know you’re a writer and not a data analyst. Or if you are a data analyst—I get that you’re on this blog to get away from your day job. Common Grammar Mistakes I’ve edited a monthly magazine for more than six years, and it’s a job that’s come with more frustration than reward. If there’s one thing I am grateful for — and it sure isn’t the pay — it’s that my work has allowed endless time to hone my craft to Louis Skolnick levels of grammar geekery. As someone who slings red ink for a living, let me tell you: grammar is an ultra-micro component in the larger picture; it lies somewhere in the final steps of the editing trail; and as such it’s an overrated quasi-irrelevancy in the creative process, perpetuated into importance primarily by bitter nerds who accumulate tweed jackets and crippling inferiority complexes. But experience has also taught me that readers, for better or worse, will approach your work with a jaundiced eye and an itch to judge. While your grammar shouldn’t be a reflection of your creative powers or writing abilities, let’s face it — it usually is.