Thursday, July 23, 2009

I am reading a book about the art and craft of storytelling. I am halfway through it and already I am getting my money’s worth. Besides the regular advice about structure, etc., this book mentions “throughline.” As in what is the primary throughline of the story. It uses the analogy of the children’s book, The Little Engine That Could. As we read the story, the little engine has a goal. We’re right there as the little engine faces obstacles on the way. There are shifts along the way, but the little engine never loses focus of its goal. That is how we need to write our stories, always focusing on the goal, the end result. According to the author of this book, there will be detours along the way, “where the threadline threads intersect. Once you’ve fixed your focus on the throughlines, you can use them to power the plot throughout your story.” Who is the author and the book? The book is titled, The Art and Craft of Storytelling: A Comprehensive Guide to Classic Writing Techniques, by Nancy Lamb. Excellent book.

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