A deft analysis and appreciation of fictionwhat makes it work and what can make it fail.
Here is a book about the craft of writing fiction that is thoroughly useful from the first to the last pagewhether the reader is a beginner, a seasoned writer, or a teacher of writing. You will see how a work takes form and shape once you grasp the principles of momentum, tension, and immediacy. "Tension," Stern says, "is the mother of fiction. When tension and immediacy combine, the story begins." Dialogue and action, beginnings and endings, the true meaning of "write what you know," and a memorable listing of don'ts for fiction writers are all covered. A special section features an Alphabet for Writers: entries range from Accuracy to Zigzag, with enlightening comments about such matters as Cliffhangers, Point of View, Irony, and Transitions.
|Publisher:||Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||8.22(w) x 5.38(h) x 0.78(d)|
About the Author
Jerome Stern, a professor of English and popular culture, is the author of an acclaimed book on writing, Making Shapely Fiction. His incisive monologues are regularly heard on National Public Radio.
Table of ContentsWhat This Book Does and Why
PART I. THE SHAPES OF EICTION
A Day in the Life
Bear at the Door
PART II. A CAUTIONARY INTERLUDE
Write What You Know
Don't This: A Short Guide to What Not to Do
PART III. FROM ACCURACY TO ZIGZAG: AN ALPHABET FOR WRITERS OF FICTION
Metaphor and Simile
Negative Positive Knowledge
Places and Place Names
Point of View
Roman a Clef
Showing and Telling
Stories within Stories
Stream of Consciousness
Suspension of Disbelief
Tour de Force
Trust Your Material
PART IV. READABLES: WHERE TO LEARN MORE
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Making Shapely Fiction is an informative and well written lesson book. If you want to learn the basics about writing fiction, this book is a perfect place to start. Stern is a writer who knows how to keep things interesting and informative at the same time. His examples are short and he gets to the point quickly, which is good given there are many lessons throughout the book. While Stern seems to have made his own vocabulary, the definitions are what is most important. Sometimes Stern stresses unimportant points and ignores points that seem very interesting, but overall he does a good job at getting across good information.
I am a writer and a teacher of creative writing at the college level. I have found this book an invaluable, witty, and well organized guide. Because I tend to reject prescriptive or overly new-agey approaches to the craft of writing, this book's literate and clear-eyed approach worked excellently for me. My students loved it too.
I've read many books on writing and this is easily the most helpful. Clear, concise, well-organized and witty.
Of all the books I've read on how to write, and there have been many, this is easily one of the most helpful. It is clear, concise, well-organized and very easy to understand. It has helped me tremendously and I highly recommend it.
Order arrived promptly and in great condition, but I haven't actually started reading the stories yet.
I downloaded this Nook and it doesn't work. Tried on Android, Mac and PC.