Author Archives: Melanie Anne Phillips

Grow Your Story from a Log Line

This technique is excerpted from our StoryWeaver Story Development Software. Introduction First, write a log line for your story. A log line is a concise one-sentence description of the essence of a story. A good way to approach this is … Continue reading

Posted in Story Development | Comments Off on Grow Your Story from a Log Line

How to Master the Creative Process

Writers often begin the story development process by thinking about what their story needs: a main character/protagonist/hero, a solid theme, a riveting plot and, of course, to meet all the touch points of their genre. Because this is just the … Continue reading

Posted in Story Development | Comments Off on How to Master the Creative Process

Story Structure Seen As War

Imagine a story’s structure as a war and the Main Character as a soldier making his way across the field of battle.  In your mind’s eye, you likely see they whole scene spread out in front of you, as if … Continue reading

Posted in Story Structure | Comments Off on Story Structure Seen As War

Symbolizing Concepts

It has been argued that perhaps the symbols we use are what create concepts, and therefore no common understanding between cultures, races, or times is possible. Dramatica works because indeed there ARE common concepts: morality, for example. Morality, a common … Continue reading

Posted in Definitions | Comments Off on Symbolizing Concepts

How Art is Made (The Battle Between Heart and Mind)

Realize that your mind is a narrative-generating machine. That is why narratives exist in the first place: because they mirror the processes of the mind. But the mind is also a repository of topical information – subject matter – and … Continue reading

Posted in Creative Writing | Comments Off on How Art is Made (The Battle Between Heart and Mind)

The Four Main Kinds of Stories

You can make your story a lot more focused and targeted if you know what kind of a story you are creating.  A good place to start is to figure out which of the four basic types of stories yours … Continue reading

Posted in Story Structure | Comments Off on The Four Main Kinds of Stories

Plot Points – Static vs. Sequential

Some time ago I wrote an article explaining how plot wasn’t the order in which events appeared in a story, but the order in which they happened to the characters.  The storytelling order can be all mixed up for effect.  … Continue reading

Posted in Plot, Story Structure | Comments Off on Plot Points – Static vs. Sequential

Character Change vs. Character Growth

Main characters don’t have to change to grow.  They can grow in their resolve. It is a common misconception among authors that the main character in a story must change in order to grow.  Certainly, that is one kind of … Continue reading

Posted in Main Character, Novel Writing, Story Development | Comments Off on Character Change vs. Character Growth

Writing Prompt Level: Expert!

Here is a writing prompt picture I posted recently and the amazingly creative response by writer Bill Williams Bill Williams – This is actually pretty easy to explain. *sips coffee* The cats in the front are feline overlords. They were … Continue reading

Posted in Creative Writing | Comments Off on Writing Prompt Level: Expert!

Smothered in an Avalanche of Ideas

One of the writers I coach recently wrote to me about getting drowned in a sea of ideas for his story, unable to organize his material, make choices, or more forward. Here is the note I wrote him in response … Continue reading

Posted in Creative Writing | Comments Off on Smothered in an Avalanche of Ideas