Story Development and Structure Strengthening Using
Story Structure Safari Techniques and Elements
A month-long experience including five one-hour Zoom meetings. One initial discussion of student goals for their story and one Zoom meeting for each of the four Zones of the story. Email exchanges for submission of ideas and progress with feedback.
Prerequisite is Story Structure Safari online class or lecture packet.
What is Story Structure?
A story is created by weaving together two major components, Plot and Character, within a setting or world. Both the plot and characters change and evolve as the story unfolds. Neither plot nor character can stand alone.
Story Structure helps the writer identify elements and patterns throughout a story. Story Structure aids in understanding how those elements can be woven together to create a powerful, effective story that meets or exceeds reader expectations.
Story Structure is a framework to help identify and create:
- Important scenes or Turning Points that propel the reader to wonder what will happen next.
- Character interactions, actions, and reactions that reveal the nature of characters and how they need to change as the story progresses.
- Settings or worlds that are revealed through the eyes of the characters, and how these worlds or settings impact the characters and the plot.
What You’ll Learn:
- How to use the core elements of your story.
- How to distill your story into a Safari Plotline.
- How to identify three threads in your story: Relationship thread, Internal thread, and the Plot or External thread.
- How to recognize the four-zone story structure, the main purpose of each zone, and the specific elements that are special to each zone.
- How to map out the Landmarks (important elements, scenes and turning points) in the four zones.
- How to compare your protagonist to the archetype character in each zone and show that on the page.
- How to identify the interdependence of plot, character arc, and setting in each zone.
- How to use information discussed and instructor feedback to work towards fully developing your story idea, write your first draft, or edit the draft you have completed.
Lisa Miller retired from teaching and counseling after 30 years. While she loved writing YA fiction, she has been drawn back into teaching. Not always finding the writing classes she needed; Lisa scoured the internet and how-to books for self-instruction. She funneled that knowledge into the creation of the Story Structure Safari class and merged it with her master teaching skills and experience with different learning styles. This is her ninth year to teach the class and she continues to update materials and expand her knowledge to best meet writer needs.
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