Monday, October 25, 2010

The Reader and Writer Agreement

Any form of fiction is an agreement between the writer and the reader. The writer says, I will tell you a story, and you will believe it while you are reading it.

The reader agrees that, as long as the story remains true to its own telling and is interesting, he will keep reading and believe what he is reading. This is often called suspension of disbelief.

The writer can create the most bizarre rules imaginable for the way his world works and have creatures that aren't possible in the real world, but there are two rules he can't break.

He must have his humans behave as humans should, and he must not break his own rules. To do either ruins the story.


"Men have died from time to time, and worms have eaten them, but not for love." William Shakespeare, As You Like It
According to the Mayo Clinic, a person can die from a broken heart.


Marilynn's Workshop Schedule and Information Links

"The Big Question: How to Create a Powerful Novel from a Few Ideas and One Big Question" November 1-28, 2010.

Have you ever read a story then felt dissatisfied by it as you put it down? All the story elements--plot, characters, romance, and suspense--were there, but something was missing. That something is often called depth or resonance, and it's that element that turns an ordinary story into one you couldn't put down.

How do you write a story like that? It starts with the creation of the story. I’ll show you how to take a simple plot idea, premise, or character and turn it into a novel with resonance.

"Deconstructing Jim Butcher's STORM FRONT" November 8-13, 2010.

Jim Butcher's "Dresden Files" series is one of the best-written and most successful urban fantasy series today. I will analyze STORM FRONT, the first novel, as an urban fantasy, as a genre-blending mix of fantasy and detective noir, and as a great model for worldbuilding for a series. I will also show how the hero, Harry Dresden, is a perfect mixture of other worldly powers and human strengths and weaknesses. Paranormal romance authors will also find this analysis of interest.

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