Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Value Added

I promised to post about the Value Added aspect of going through Donald Maass’ Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook. First let me say the exercises are extremely useful. They also require thought, time and hard work. 

Between the exercises, Maass includes a page or two of explanatory material in which he explains his ideas and illustrates them with passages from novels. Usually when reading these passages, I realize that my novel could use a passage that is similar in some way. Character B never explains exactly how Character D makes him feel, or Character A needs a stronger reaction to [plot event], or Characters A and E need to have a bigger argument. I write all these ideas on a separate page, and when the exercises get too challenging, I go back and write these scenes. 

It’s working so far.

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