The Plot Thickens: 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life

The Plot Thickens: 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life

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by Noah Lukeman
     
 

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As a literary agent, Noah Lukeman hears thousands of book pitches a year. Often the stories sound great in concept, but never live up to their potential on the page. Lukeman shows beginning and advanced writers how to implement the fundamentals of successful plot development, such as character building and heightened suspense and conflict. Writers will find it

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Overview

As a literary agent, Noah Lukeman hears thousands of book pitches a year. Often the stories sound great in concept, but never live up to their potential on the page. Lukeman shows beginning and advanced writers how to implement the fundamentals of successful plot development, such as character building and heightened suspense and conflict. Writers will find it impossible to walk away from this invaluable guide---a veritable fiction-writing workshop---without boundless new ideas.

Editorial Reviews

Authorlink
"One of the best-ever books about the craft of writing."
The Writer
"A highly useful book that is written in an accessible style and filled with valuable examples."
Midwest Book Review
"A written version of the mentor you always wished you could have."
Prarieden.com
"The type of book you need to purchase so it can sit on your desk, dog-eared and underlined."
Netauthor.org
"Lukeman understands... what makes for excellent, not just bestselling, fiction. Treat yourself to his superbly written reference guide."
From the Publisher
“One of the best-ever books about the craft of writing. It is a book that can change the world of every writer who embraces Lukeman’s ideas. His classroom on paper should be on every writer’s shelf to be read again and again.” —-Authorlink

“Full of practical common sense about how to write fiction and [he] answers many of the difficult questions first novelists ask themselves.” —-Michael Korda, author of Making the List

“Lukeman’s advice is practical—-and often entails multiple, time-consuming steps—-without a hint of the flakiness that creeps into many writing guides. Though Lukeman works with books, he wisely asserts that the observations in this volume are applicable to all types of imaginary writing, from film to poetry. Indeed, it is a worthy addition to any writer’s reference shelf.” —-Publishers Weekly

“A godsend...The Plot Thickens is not the type of book you want to check out from the library or borrow from a friend. It is the type of book you need to purchase so it can sit on your desk, dog-eared and underlined, worn from years of overuse.” —-Prairieden.com

Michael Korda
...full of practical common sense about how to write fiction and answers many of the difficult questions first novelists ask...
Carol Bly
Brilliant...Personable, buoyant, and very wise...
James Frey
[Lukeman] shows writers how to build stories in which the plot emerges from fresh, alive, and intense characters.
Publishers Weekly
Lukeman's second book on writing after 2000's The First Five Pages (a third volume on dialogue is still to come) discusses the craft of writing well-plotted fiction. Lukeman, a literary agent, rallies against the lazy and mundane that cross his desk in the form of 50,000 manuscripts submitted in the last five years. Initially, at least, he is less concerned with artfulness than the simple need to make the book compelling beyond the first few pages. He asserts that the foundation (and often the first casualty) of a book is character, and accordingly, Lukeman dedicates the first two chapters to an exhaustive list of questions a writer should ask about the "outer" and "inner" life of each character. He encourages a Dr. Frankenstein-like approach to creating realistic fictional characters: devising them with the intention of bending them to the writer's own will, but at the same time investing them with enough life that they are capable of making their own way in the world and ultimately surprising their creator. A third chapter called "Applied Characterization" discusses how to use this knowledge to form a plot. The remaining five chapters cover different aspects of plotting: "The Journey," "Suspense," "Conflict," "Context" and "Transcendency." Lukeman's advice is practical and often entails multiple, time-consuming steps without a hint of the flakiness that creeps into many writing guides. The closest he ever gets to sounding like a guru is when he sagely stresses, "Real life is the best teacher." Though Lukeman works with books, he wisely asserts that the observations in this volume are applicable to all types of imaginary writing, from film to poetry. Indeed, it is a worthy addition to any narrative writer's reference shelf. (July 8) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312309282
Publisher:
St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
06/18/2003
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
527,614
Product dimensions:
5.00(w) x 8.04(h) x 0.59(d)

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