The Story Puzzle: How to Brainstorm and Outline a Bestseller
The Story Puzzle covers the steps involved in prewriting and outlining your novel.
Learn to identify what pieces you need, what pieces you’re missing, how to find the elements you lack, how to know if a piece to your story puzzle is worthy of being included, and how to know if you’re even working on the right “puzzle”.
Listen to Dave’s introduction to the course and read the descriptions of each of the six lessons included.
Already know you want help writing that bestseller? Enroll now in The Story Puzzle: How to Brainstorm and Outline a Bestseller!
Lesson 1: Settings—In this lesson, Dave discusses the importance of transporting a reader into a fictional universe, as shown by the bestselling books in each genre. Learn how to pick fascinating settings, whether in a contemporary setting, historical, future, or fantasy world. Lessons tell how to create your own worlds, particularly in fantasy and science fiction. You’ll create your overall setting for your novel, as well as “mini-settings” that you will visit in various scenes.
Lesson 2: Character—Learn how to populate your tale with well-drawn characters, by exploring the roles that types of characters perform in stories. Once you decide on a cast, learn how create characters—from their physical bodies and dress, to their inner attributes, and on through their personal histories. You’ll also learn how to make characters likeable and interesting, so that readers feel deeply for them.
Lesson 3: Conflict—The conflicts in your story are the engine that drives it. So we’ll discuss various types of conflicts, such as man vs. man, man vs. nature, man vs. society, etc. Learn about romantic conflicts, and the importance of identity conflicts. We’ll explore various types of setbacks and obstacles that your characters may face, identifying the value of all in storytelling.
Lesson 4: Plotting—Learn ways to create a plot, then to broaden or deepen your conflicts in increments so that your story builds. We’ll discuss how to build up to, and create, inciting incidents, and identify ways that stories can successfully reach powerful conclusions. We’ll also talk about how to use various plotting tools in order to help spice up any tale.
Lesson 5: Theme—Recognize when a theme pops up spontaneously, or how to handle themes that might be important to you. We’ll talk about how various characters might serve as mouthpieces, arguing different sides of a theme, or how their actions act as lessons, and we go over the importance of learning how to resolve themes organically.
Lesson 6: Treatment—Discover how your unique style, tone, and voice add to the viability of a work. Learn about “greenlighting” your novel to make sure it’s a proper fit for its intended market. Learn how to research the market for your novel, based upon audience size and sales of similar novels, and how to properly target your market.
Each section includes exercises to strengthen the lessons you’ll learn, and with weekly conference calls with Dave you’ll have the opportunity to get real-time answers to the questions that might arise as you work through the course.