The Art And Craft Of Storytelling: A Comprehensive Guide To Classic Writing Techniques

( 8 )

Overview


Master the Power of Story

When you consider the thousands of years of storytelling that comprise our literary tradition, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the shadow of so many works. But there are common threads that link all stories--from Beowulf and Hamlet to Gone With the Wind and The Godfather to the story you're drafting right now in your head. These threads form the foundation that supports story--a foundation Nancy Lamb shows you how to...

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The Art And Craft Of Storytelling: A Comprehensive Guide To Classic Writing Techniques

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Overview


Master the Power of Story

When you consider the thousands of years of storytelling that comprise our literary tradition, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the shadow of so many works. But there are common threads that link all stories--from Beowulf and Hamlet to Gone With the Wind and The Godfather to the story you're drafting right now in your head. These threads form the foundation that supports story--a foundation Nancy Lamb shows you how to access and master.

Whether you're writing a novel, a memoir, or a screenplay, The Art and Craft of Storytelling offers time-tested ways to translate a concrete idea into a polished work. In this book, you will find strategies for:

  • Creating a successful a beginning, middle, and end while moving smoothly from one stage to the next
  • Crafting memorable characters, choosing the best point of view for your story, and constructing authentic, compelling dialogue
  • Integrating and navigating the more subtle elements of story, such as voice, tone, premise, and theme
  • Understanding genres and subgenres and how they apply to your story
  • Structuring plots that transform a ho-hum story into a page-turning read
The Art and Craft of Storytelling gives you all the tools you need to contribute your own story to our great tradition, to open new worlds to your readers, and to introduce new ways of thinking. This is the power and purpose of story. And by your writing, this is the tradition you honor.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781582975597
  • Publisher: F+W Media, Inc.
  • Publication date: 12/15/2008
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 402,601
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Nancy Lamb is the author of forty-three books of fiction and nonfiction for children and adults. She has taught writing at workshops in Singapore; Athens, Georgia; and Big Sur, California. She can be reached through her Web site, www.nancylamb.com.

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Table of Contents

1 Time Frames: Story, Past and Present 2

2 Discovering Your Story: The Evocation of the Muse 7

3 The Genre Wars: From Romance to Literary Fiction 12

4 Structural Design: Building What Works for You 31

5 Breaking Ground: How to Begin the Beginning 39

6 The Space-Time Continuum: Moving Forward (and Backward) Through Your Story 52

7 Enter The Bitch: The Power of Negative Voices 65

8 The Mid-Story Crisis: Rescuing Your Story From the Middle Muddle 70

9 Classical Drama: In the Age of the Page-Turner 77

10 The End: ... Or the End of the Beginning? 87

11 Scenes: How They're Structured and What Makes Them Work 100

12 The Dynamic Duos: Story and Quest, Plot and Subplot 119

13 The Cast of Characters: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly 137

14 Point of View: Who Tells the Story 155

15 Inner and Outer Dialogue: Authenticity and Credibility 180

16 Keeping Your Promise: Premise, Theme, and Moral 191

17 The Promise Continued: Voice and Tone 198

18 Narrative Authority: Setting and Senses 212

19 The Write Way: The Finer Points of Good Writing 221

20 Coming Unglued: Dealing With Writer's Block 236

21 The Creative Spirit: The Care and Feeding of Your Muse 240

App Genre Reading List 250

Index 260

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 26, 2014

    One of my favorite reference books. "The Art and Craft of S

    One of my favorite reference books. "The Art and Craft of Storytelling" is definitely a great investment for both the novice, and experienced writer. You will not be regret purchasing this book.

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  • Posted February 4, 2011

    First time authors must READ!

    The Art and Craft of Storytelling by Nancy Lamb jumped off the shelf and whispered, "This is just what you're looking for Janet!" It told me the truth. After months of working on my first book I knew something was missing, but I didn't know the right questions to ask to get the answers I needed. This book took me by the hand and answered my questions, and it answered questions I didn't know to ask. I couldn't put it down. I knew the techniques in this book could help me finish my first book. What I found especially fascinating is that it actually, without a lot of fluff, focuses on storytelling, and not just the mechanics of writing. Nancy uses clear examples for her readers, and this is an added benefit for a first time author. Thank you Nancy!

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  • Posted March 1, 2010

    Cant say enough good things

    I have looked at so many "how to" books' regarding writing and this by far has been the most upfront and usable guide yet. I have given this book out to every aspiring writer and college student to help with general writing principals as well as writing short stories or novels. Like I titled this review, I can't say enough good things. The absolute best $15 dollars I have spent on a writing guide.

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  • Posted May 30, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    one of the better books on writing...

    a well written and organzied book on writing. Nancy Lamb gives excellent examples of what she tell you first and then shows you. A small but good book--no nonsense and to the point without any fluff! Highly recommended!

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  • Posted March 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Classic

    For the reviewer who was disappointed in this book I can only ask, did you read it? Really? One thing Nancy Lamb does not lack is confidence, after having written over 40 books for children and adults, and the kind of hands on teaching experience that has earned her a loyal following of disciples like me. What this book does not pretend to be is a book for beginners. If you need that kind of specific help then, yes, look elsewhere, but if you want to explore masterful examples of technique from the greats of literature, then this is the book to keep on your bedside table, always, to remind yourself how classic storytelling techniques are eternal, from the Greek tragedies to The Godfather to the story you're trying to tell. Of course, this book may cause your bookshelves to bow with the weight of new literary acquisitions as you study all the examples she has gathered. It's a kind of encyclopedia of necessary reading. But if you do read all the examples, you will find that your writing improves by osmosis. We cannot learn to write by reading how-to books, only by reading great works, over and over, till they become a subconscious treasure trove of technique, working in the wings of the theatre of our minds, our supporting cast. It seems to me that Nancy Lamb understands this better than most, and that's why she has given us a map through the landscape of great literature. You need never be lost again, with Lamb as your guide.

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  • Posted February 16, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    There are many that are better.

    I was disapointed in this book. I currently have over 70 books on writing and storytelling in my personal library and I found this one to be particularly weak. Ms. Lamb seems to have a difficult time having confidence in her own opinions and writing style. She quotes one particular author so frequently that I wondered why I'm bothering reading her book and not reading his. This book would be an acceptible book for a novice but not for anything more. I love learning new things and getting a different perspective but from this book I found little of these.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 16, 2009

    Loved it!

    Easy to read and very imformative. Very helpful. One of the best writing reference books I've read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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