Thursday, July 31, 2014

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Story

1.  A story is a condition where the viewer peers over the shoulders of one or more characters, eavesdropping on conversations and circumstances well beyond the viewer's comfort zones.

2.  A story is a ticket to a landscape the viewer has always yearned to visit.

3.  Story is the place the viewer chooses as a stronghold to escape boredom.

4.  Story must appear to be more real and fraught than Reality.

5.  Story is the calculus of ambiguity.

6.  For a story to be true, it must contain at least one uncertainty hidden among the secrets.

7.  A character must lie at least once during the arc of a story, although perhaps the character has lied in order to get into the story.

8.  A character is often more vulnerable at the end of a story than at the beginning.  

9.  The writer of the story is often more vulnerable at the ending of a story than at the beginning.

10.  The reader of the story is more vulnerable at the ending of a story than the beginning.

11.  The most memorable stories are those where the reader begins to suspect the possibility that every character was drawn from him or her rather than from the writer.

12.  By now, you should have found at least one story that seems to be warning you about something.

13.  Your mother was right.  There's a lot going on around here that nobody seems to grasp.

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