Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Meetup Minutes 4/11/16

For those of you who couldn't come to the Hang Out on 4/11/16, this is what we talked about:

Recommended Reading by those of us at the meeting:

Possible Activities for our Monthly Meeting:

  • Write Ins
  • Dissect a Movie or a Book
  • Invite Speaker
  • Go to an Internet Course as a group

If you have other suggestions please feel free to add them here or suggest them in the comments below.

We decided to dissect The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck using The Story Grid worksheet I'm currently working on. The password for the link to the worksheet is "Content Cathedral". I have some final touches to do to the worksheet and then I'll put up a new link just for our Grapes of Wrath discussions. We decided to read 4 chapters a month and discuss them when we meet monthly. I looked at the book and found out there are 30 chapters. I recommend we read 5 chapters a month and that would have us finish up in 6 months.


Several of you have asked how to critique or what to critique so I am providing my Critique Template in the CC folder.

Word Tracker (In Development)

I also shared the Word Tracker I am currently working on. I have put a link to that as well so you can see it in the CC file. Please don't change it there. You can copy it to your own computer and erase the data if you want to try using it on your own or you can wait until I finish working on it and get a template up that is completely functional.


Anything I missed? Feel free to edit this post or put something in the comments.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Book Review: Story by Robert McKee and Story Grid Shawn Coyne

I know I've been taking forever to get Story Developer #5 out. And I've been sans internet and out of touch in California so you can't even complain about my negligence. In my defense, I haven't been sitting on my hands the whole time. I've been reading and writing and learning. Learning soooo much, in fact, that I felt I had to share some of it with you.

Robert Mckee, Steven Pressfield and Shawn Coyne have all worked together and have been successful in the editing/writing business for decades. All of them have great resources that refer to each other's work. And each man's work makes the others more clear and understandable.

These works are not for the faint of heart, however. I would recommend reading something by James Scott Bell or Larry Brooks before you delve into the 600 pages of Story by Robert McKee. But once you have the basics down pat, these works ease you into the minute details of writing unforgettable stories.

Story is long, but well laid out and every chapter gave me things to ponder about my own story.

The Story Grid gave me a way to assess my own work and to assess the qualities of master works that I can't get out of my head. Shawn Coyne seems genuinely interested in writers and very approachable with a great website and the best podcast for writers currently playing in my opinion. Because so many writers are financially strapped, he has even made his book free on the internet. (Though I bought my copy because I didn't feel I needed the man's charity.) I was so taken with his analysis, I am putting together a tool to help writers analyse their work and other works. I hope to have that to you next month sometime.

Steven Pressfield runs a blog for writers with great articles. 

Hope you get the time to check out one or all of these resources.

Story Developer #5: Rounding Out your Characters