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“You enter the extraordinary by way of the ordinary.” ~Frederick Buechner

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Build Your Story: 8 Strategies for Writing Innovative Settings With Impact

Over the past twelve weeks we’ve looked at the definitions and concepts behind the words mythic and impact to examine timeless precepts for strengthening our stories. So how do we practically apply them?

In the synonym list above you’ll notice that not all the applications need to be radical. Fresh, creative, and groundbreaking are as effective at creating a unique impact as is inventive. Settings for your short story, or memoir, or novel may range from a quiet backdrop to a mega-world with a character of its own. But no matter which level you choose for the degree of presence, each still resonates with atmosphere, tone and mood. It is your choice how to boost their impact when relevant.

It’s important for us to first know the details ourselves. Just as we can walk around our homes in the dark, knowing exactly where we are, so must our characters. What is real to them needs to be real to us—physically, emotionally, and spiritually. This provides authentic atmosphere, tone, and mood. But it doesn’t mean we need to invent everything. 

In this free eight-session blog workshop we’ll examine eight key strategies to create impact for our unique setting regardless of genre. Each month will focus on one strategy with three or four applications and creative writing prompts to customize to your work. Whether you are just beginning a new project or are ready to revise, these suggestions will give you critical perspective.

Several of my clients have given me permission to use their settings as examples, so we will be looking at a variety of novel excerpts from contemporary women's fiction, romantic police drama, historical romance and adventure and mystery, sassy comedy, fantasy and a smidge of sci-fi, as well as a mythic world in my own upcoming series.
Read deep, marcy

                   Introduction            June 26th
Workshop Sessions Begin            July 3 rd
Strategy # 1      Habitat Highways             July
Strategy # 2      Holy Landscape                August
Strategy # 3      Historic Landmarks           September
Strategy # 4      Hungry Territory               October
Strategy # 5      Honest Sensory Keys        November
Strategy # 6      Homespun Locale             December
Strategy # 7      Harmful Dangers               January
Strategy # 8      Hidden Secrets                  February

Share: What questions do you want answered for your specific setting? Send them to me via the contact link above and I will incorporate feedback and examples when possible in the individual lessons.

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