Tag Archive - plotting

Plotting Madness on the Gorgeous California Coast

There is still time to sign up for our intensive, fun, and intimate Plotting Madness Boot Camp in Mendocino, CA. If you haven’t seen this gorgeous coastline of rocky coast and crashing waves, you are missing out.

I’ve spent many hours enjoying this part of the CA coast. As a diver, I’ve ventured into these amazing coastal waters to shoot pictures and search out fish (and sharks). While many of my friends were spearfishing, I headed the other way (not wanting a shark to mistake me for lunch when smelling all that blood), enjoying the underwater beauty the Mendocino coast has to offer (though the water is often below 50 degrees!).

Mendocino is a quaint town, with wonderful little shops, restaurants, and bakeries. But what makes this place heaven are the gorgeous views. This is one of my favorite places in the entire state, and I have quite a few faves! Continue Reading…

The Character Arc in Six Specific Stages

Here’s a post I wrote for Writers Helping Writers some months back that I’d like to share with you.

As a writer, you’re probably familiar with the term “character arc,” but what does a character arc entail? How do you structure this arc? And what informs the way your character changes, from the start of your story to the end?

While all characters in a novel can have arcs, it’s the protagonist whose change should be the most significant. Depending on genre and plot, your hero’s change might be subtle or life-altering. A suspense thriller or cozy mystery may show little character growth by the end, when the bad guy is caught or the mystery solved, whereas a thoughtful women’s fiction novel or relational drama may showcase monumental change.

But, in all stories, arcs are about change or transformation. And the stories with strong arcs show a character starting in what Hollywood movie consultant Michael Hauge calls identity or persona.

What makes for a great persona is a character who has suffered in his past and has developed a coping mechanism over time. This is his face he presents to the world that keeps buried his pain, fear, or hurt. Continue Reading…

Half Off Writing Boot Camps ~ South Lake Tahoe, California

For the last five years, I’ve been teaching writing retreats in gorgeous South Lake Tahoe, CA. And each year I keep expanding. New retreats. More instuctors. More instruction!

My co-instructor, Catharine Bramkamp, and I offering writers a very special limited-time offer:

If you come to either two or all three of our Tahoe boot camps this fall, and you sign up before January 31, you will get HALF OFF your boot camp cost.

While every house we’ve rented has been drop-dead gorgeous, we’ve had our eye on this property for some years. In order to rent it, we need to get writers on board ASAP to commit to coming so we can pay for the house and lock it in. Continue Reading…

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