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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Susan May Warren's eBook The Story Equation

As serendipity would have it, I read yesterday (all in one sitting) the wonderful book by Susan May Warren entitled The Story Equation, which confirms my own thoughts in my previous post. Just like yesterday's blog revealed, I'm of the character-driven mind-set when it comes to stories, so I abhor those articles and books and such that say I must answer a one-hundred-question form as to each main character's (trivial) backstory, including high school attended and pet's name. Rubbish! And what a waste of time. [I read a Kaizen book two days ago, so I'm even more into efficiency, plus loving this main principle of Kaizen: DO NOT PRODUCE, TRANSMIT OR ACCEPT WASTE].

As Susan explains in her book, her process, dubbed the SEQ (shorthand for the book's title), is about emotions and values, more intrinsic descriptions that define our heroes and heroines.


Plus, once we have the main plot points drafted (via her special brainstorming timeline), she teaches us about a unique concept: starting from the end and working backward as we consider our scenes needed. That way we know what to foreshadow, and we stay on track with our main plot, the character's growth, the theme of our story. She actually has a separate step where we focus on the conflict, making sure we escalate the three try/fail cycles and also give our hero(ine) enough motivation for his/her journey.

I highly recommend this book. Can be read in about two hours and fifteen minutes. Take notes!

Now I'm off to type up highlighted portions from Susan's book into an Excel spreadsheet as a brainstorming/plotting checklist template for my own use.


"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)

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