Novelist's Essential Guide to Crafting Scenes

Novelist's Essential Guide to Crafting Scenes

by Raymond Obstfeld


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Writing page-turning fiction depends on your ability to create rock-solid, believable scenes. Scenes act as dynamic structures that thrust both your characters and readers forward through conflict, baiting them with goals that may–or may not–be obtained. Writing good scenes makes the difference between a tale that crackles with energy and momentum and a story that falls flat.

In Novelist's Essential Guide to Crafting Scenes, Raymond Obstfeld leads you through the creation process, examining all the elements that go into making scenes successful, cohesive and compelling. Tackling topics like finding a scene's "hot spot," identifying its dominating purpose and avoiding a cliched ending, Obstfeld provides essential reading for novice and novelist alike. Using examples from film, short stories, and best-selling fiction, he documents why and how scenes work. You'll learn:

  • what is (and isn't) a scene
  • how to make scenes memorable
  • how to use point of view
  • how to focus on character, plot and theme
  • how to make scenes pay off
  • how to structure a scene
  • how to use setting
  • how to revise a scene
  • the importance of first impressions

Every page of Novelist's Essential Guide to Crafting Scenes opens a new window of opportunity for writers by offering valuable insight, articulate advice and expert examples. It's a reference, a road map and a romp, all rolled into one. So go on–make a scene. And make it unforgettable.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780898799736
Publisher: F+W Media
Publication date: 08/28/2000
Series: Novelist's Essential Guide Series
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 5.12(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.65(d)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1What a Scene Is--and Isn't1
Chapter 2Jump Right In--The Words Are Fine: Starting a Scene9
Chapter 3Size-Wise: Determining Scene Length30
Chapter 4He Said, She Said: Deciding on Point of View38
Chapter 5You Are Here: Using Setting51
Chapter 6Fond Farewell or Good Riddance: Ending a Scene60
Chapter 7Shape to Fit: Focusing a Scene on Character, Plot or Theme72
Chapter 8The P[superscript 3] Equation: Making Payoff Scenes Work86
Chapter 9Hello, Stranger: First Meetings94
Chapter 10When Characters Collide: Action & Suspense Scenes104
Chapter 11What's So Funny? Comic Scenes127
Chapter 12Love & Lust: Romantic & Sex Scenes144
Chapter 13The Long Good-Bye: Final Scenes161
Chapter 14From Mess to Masterpiece: Structuring182
Chapter 15From First to Final Draft: Revising196

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Novelist's Essential Guide to Crafting Scenes 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Very helpful and interesting. It really helped me improve my writing skill. Two thumbs up!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was lucky enough to attend one of his lectures on 'Creative Writing' at Orange Coast College - and let me tell you, he is Awesome! His dedication and professionalism are truly admirable. I am giving him unbiased 5-stars after reading his book 'The Novelist¡¯s Essential Guide to Crafting Scenes' - not only because of his amazingly helpful guidelines but also 'cause of a sincere 'passion' I felt in his work. I recommend this book to any amateur or professional writers out there,