Whether your characters live and work in a world that looks like ours, or they travel through a portal to someplace virtually unrecognizable to us, exploring new ways to enter your story universe will help you craft a world that better supports the story you want to tell.
Whether your story is realistic or complete fantasy, the time you spend focusing on your setting is valuable because uderstanding the world around your characters will help you create a stronger story.
We all have some idea of what a resolution is, but what are these scene and story-enders meant to do? In this episode, Leslie explores resolutions so you can write stronger scenes and stories.
What are scene climaxes, and why do our stories need them? In this episode, Leslie discusses the decisions your characters make and actions they take when faced with a dilemma, so you can write stronger scenes and stories.
What are crisis questions? Why do our stories and scenes need them? In this episode, Leslie discusses the dilemmas your characters face on the way to resolutions so you can write stronger scenes and stories.
What are progressive complications? Why do our stories and scenes need them? This week, Story Grid Certified editor Leslie Watts discusses the people, places, things, and events that stand between your characters and their goals within the context of the opening of Anna Ferguson’s YA science fiction novel, The Empire of Saffron.
What are inciting incidents? Why do our stories and scenes need them? What are the elements of a solid inciting incident? This week, Story Grid Certified editor Leslie Watts discusses these story event catalysts in the context of the opening of Drew Horstman’s fantasy novel, Nicholas Crumb. The editorial mission encourages you to collect inciting incidents by reading and watching stories—and from your own life.
You’ve written lots of scenes for your work in progress, but how do you know whether they work? Does your scene satisfy basic story principles? In this episode, Leslie shows you how to analyze your scenes by looking at the opening of AW Moyer’s YA fantasy story, The Grim Book.
Although we want strive to be mindful and deliberate while editing, when it comes to drafting our stories, it’s more useful to write with abandon. Grant Faulkner, Executive Director of NaNoWriMo, talks with me about what that means, how to go about it, and why it’s important.
Did you know that everything your characters say and do should be consistent with their essential action and conscious object of desire? In this episode, you'll learn what essential and literal action are and how identifying these items in your scenes will help you level-up your stories.
Have you ever wondered how to take a story that works and make it great? In this episode, you'll discover specific tools to improve a story that’s already working by enhancing the elements of your genre and style to focus on your ideal reader’s specific expectations.
How are dystopian and post-apocalyptic fiction are similar and different? Which must-have elements will help you tell a satisfying story in these categories? Find out in this episode with guest host James Thorn.
Is there ever a good time to use second person point of view? Find out in episode 126.
Leslie & Alyssa critique the opening of CS Manley’s Awakened. They discuss the opening device (amnesia), tension, setting, and the high polishing techniques that will make your writing lean.
In this episode, Leslie and Alyssa critique the opening pages from Steeven R. Orr’s Walrus of Death. They discuss appropriate humor and how it can benefit your story, judicious pruning for a smoother reading experience, setting reader expectations with character appearance, and great hooks.
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Word Count: Approx. 18,150
Published? Not currently.