Setups and Payoffs: What are they?

Here’s how Robert McKee sums ’em up:  Continue reading

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Tension, Conflict, Suspense: In our own stories

It’s Tension, Conflict, Suspense week.  Let’s see what kind of macrotension questions and conflicts we can come up with for the one-liners we’ve got going. Continue reading

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Tension, Conflict, Suspense: How Harlan Coben does it

It’s Tension, Conflict, Suspense week, and today we’re looking at how Harlan Coben milks the tension, conflict, and suspense in No Second Chance.  I guarantee that I did not pick up on all of his uses and manipulations, but here’s what I did spot: Continue reading

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28 Ways to Create Suspense

Or…  Tension, Conflict, Suspense Part 2.  (Find Part 1 here.)

“Suspense is achieved by arousing the reader’s curiosity and keeping it aroused as long as possible,” says Sol Stein. Here are some techniques to do just that. Continue reading

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Tension, Conflict, Suspense

There are some distinctions among these terms, but there’s also a lot of overlap. In general, the goal is tension, with conflict and suspense each being a way to create tension. Here we go… Continue reading

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Setting: In our own stories

We’re looking at Setting this week.  When selecting settings, we’re looking for places (i) that affect the character, (ii) that affect the plot, (iii) that we haven’t experienced before, (iv) that we want to experience, (v) that are believable, and (vi) that are optimally placed in time.

So, let’s see what kind of settings we can come up with for the one-liners we’ve been working on. Continue reading

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Setting: How the masters use it

We’re looking at Setting this week. Here are some setting passages from some of the books I’ve read lately. Let’s see how the masters multi-task. Continue reading

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Defining Setting: Part 2

We’re looking at Setting this week. The tool post ran long so I broke it up into two.  The first part was posted yesterday.  You can find it here.

CONTINUED FROM YESTERDAY:  THE MULTI-TASKING THAT SETTING CAN DO Continue reading

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Defining Setting: Part 1

We’re looking at Setting this week, also known as place, location, world, milieu and mise-en-scène.  The masters have a lot to say again, but this time I’m going to break up the post into two.  You can find the next part here.  Anyway, let’s get to it. Continue reading

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Antagonists: In our own stories

So this week we’re looking at how to make our antagonists as awesome and effective as they can be. Let’s see what we can do with the antagonists we’ve got in the one-liners we’re developing. Continue reading

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