Open Notebook: Gotham Writer’s Workshop Writing Fiction book

1023 It feels like all the things my undergraduate fiction writing classes didn’t cover or skimped on are given insightful attention in this highly readable resource. Here are some points that really resonated with me…

Think of yourself as a collector—of sensations, of objects, of names. Especially names.—Chris Lombardi

The first job of a story’s beginning is to start at the right time.—David Harris Ebenbach

With the first few paragraphs of a story of novel, you make a contract with the reader. You agree to tell a particular kind of story in a particular voice. Whatever you contract to do, as with POV, you contract to do it consistently.—Peter Selgin

The beginning of a story has to get three things done: it has to drop the reader right into the middle of the action, it has to provide all the necessary background information to get the reader up to speed, and it has to establish the major dramatic question.—David Harris Ebenbach

Plot makes fiction coherent by drawing together all the characters, setting, voice, and everything else around a single organizing force… And that thing, the force the draws everything together in a successful pieces of fiction, is a single, pressing question.—David Harris Ebenbach

The purpose of multiple drafts is to discover what we’re writing, and then to refine it into its ultimate form.—Peter Selgin

Just start by telling a story. Telling a story will take you into the heart of the story, and at the heart of the story there will be a theme that you can dig out and crystallize…—Terry Bain

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