Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Telling a Story with Pages of Printed Words

JoAnn Arnold

I'm going to take a writing class from Dave Wolverton, in March, here in St. George and I am really looking forward to the learning experience. Though the class isn't until March, we already have a reading assignment. "Character and Viewpoint" by Orson Scott Card. "Writing the Blockbuster Novel" by Albert Zuckerman, and "Story" by Robert McKee.

In the book, "Story", Mr. McKee discusses substance, structure, style, etc. In Chapter 1, page 25 he tells us; "A storyteller is a life poet, an artist who transforms day-to-day living, inner life and outer life, dream and actuality into a poem whose rhyme scheme is events rather than words."

On page 26, he tells us; "Given the choice between trivial material brilliantly told versus profound material badly told, an audience will always choose the trivial told brilliantly. Master storytellers know how to squeeze life out of the least of things, while poor storytellers reduce the profound to the banal."

Just under the chapter title "The Element of Story," in chapter 2, we read: A beautifully told story is a symphonic unity in which structure, setting, character, genre, and idea meld seamlessly. to find their harmony, the writer must study the elements of story as if they were instruments of an orchestra--first separately, then in concert."

As you can see, this book is going to be a deep, thought provoking read.

But I just want to warn you,in advance, that by March 12, 2011, after I have read the books and attended what I think will be a blockbuster workshop, I will have all the knowledge and training I need to write a bestseller. The only thing left will be to put all that I learned to work.

Now I have to go practice my piano. I think learning to play the piano beautifully is a lot like learning to write an amazing story.

Have a great day.


Christine Thackeray said...

Brilliant. I am so jealous. Enjoy your experience.