Writing 21st Century Fiction [Pdf Kindle]


Maass as always has some great advice here for livening up your fiction if your draft is feeling stale Much of it sounded similar to what he offered in The Fire in Fiction and Writing the Breakout Novel though the spin here is that the modern audience and agent doesn t have the time for your boring assed fiction Do EVERYTHING YOU CAN to make sure your characters are memorable your plots well paced and your endings so astounding their heads will explode It s a endings so astounding their heads will explode It s a orderI came away feeling rather overloaded with suggestions too Not necessarily bad thing but I was somewhat of my skating coach back in thing but I was somewhat reminded of my skating coach back in day helping me learn a jump or a spin My coach could show me examples of the maneuver being done well and he could offer a lot of suggestions for different ways to hold my shoulders position my feet or stretch my body Not all of them were actually useful though because it was impossible for him to predict the ripple effects of a single change Without even considering that he d just throw a bunch of advice at me to see what worked Some of it resulted in some rather exaggerated and incorrect results which were made even worse when he made five suggestions at onceSame for Maass s advice particularly in the battery of lists at the end of each chapter Think of something your character would never say Make them say it What s the most improbable thing your character would do at the climactic moment of the book Make them do it What s an ironclad rule of your genre Break it You can t do ALL of these things or else you re going to end up with a manuscript as spastic as my first attempts at double axels That s my sense anywayIf you re in the mood to wade through it all however there are some good ideas here for experimenting with your fiction The lists are themed I now but they end up making the book as a whole feel less cohesive than the others I mentioned I don t think Writing 21st Century Fiction is bad but I would recommend The Fire in Fiction instead The first time I read this book I skimmed over the uestions at the end of each segment they really reuire deep thought and the time and space for it and I still found it uite useful in wrapping my head around where I wanted my work to go I Portrait of a Starter: An Unhidden Story knew I d have to revisit it before I went back to the revision drawing board and this time I focused on the uestions I just finished and it has catapulted my outlook on my writing life and the work itself into a whole new light and I ve been at this for many years I have it on my Kindle but I just ordered a bound copy for easy flipping during revsion sessions If you are a writer looking to up your game buy this book This was amazing If you write books or are thinking about it definitely try this out Maass covers every possibly element of story you could think of and warps everything you think younow Those suck ups who rate this book a 5 are obviously hoping to get on Donald Maass good side He heads a big literary agency in New York The book is a 4 and mainly because of the uestions at the end of each chapter The text contains some wisdom but I don t honestly believe it will benefit writers who have not already read about the topics in detail elsewhere If you have you ll enjoy the review and the fresh examples lots of contemporary ones Rereading about topics such as characters may set something at an angle you previously missed that s all For example in chapter 6 The Three Levels of Story Maass writes about inner and outer conflict which I ve read about and thought about just like you but his focus on inner and outer turning points in each scene did click with me in a new way Another example of a good from Chapter 6 was what he called the fourth level which is not plot beginning middle end scene or microtension His concept of the fourth level was useful to me but based on how little Maass truly elaborates some enterprising writer of fiction writing books could do him better much better I d try but I How the West Was Lost: Fifty Years of Economic Folly--and the Stark Choices Ahead know at this time I can t Maass definitelynows than I do duh but he does not spell it out Maybe I ll figure it out as I continue writingI found lots of things The first book to provide a concrete framework for writing powerful literarycommercial novels With this book literary novelists will Learn to create compelling plots while commercial novelists will be able to achieve literary uality writing and win critical respect Examine examples techniues and exercises Learn practical tools in each chapter that allow novelists to apply these methods immediately to create fiction that transcends genre creates realities uniue to its authors conjures characters who feel real than real people and shows readers the world around them in new ways What is it that makes twenty first centu.

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Donald Maass ´ 1 SUMMARY

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Writing 21st Century FictionO can blow my mind and force me to fundamentally re examine everything I thought I new about writing But this book did both In spades A thought provoking look at writing fiction It was the right book for me to be reading now As with all of Maass s book there is insight and then practical exercise to push your writing further It s a book I will return to again and again One of my favorite books on the craft of fiction is literary agent Donald Maass s classic Writing the Breakout Novel Maass followed that up with The Fire in Fiction Passion Purpose and Techniues to Make Novel Great His latest work Writing 21st Techniues to Make Your Novel His latest work Writing 21st Fiction High Impact Techniues for Exceptional Storytelling focuses on what it takes to write high impact fiction in today s genre driven ageMaass decided to write the book after he noticed commercial genre fiction dominated The New York Times best seller list for hardcovers as expected but the trade paperback list featured literary fiction His conclusion was that a new ind of fiction was emerging and that the best 21st Century fiction combined proven commercial story telling techniues with high impact literary writing that exhibited powerful themes and emotions In an interview on the popular blog Writer Unboxed Maass discussed what the book is about It s about the death of genre or accurately the liberation from genre boxes including the literary box It s about creating fiction that s powerful free and uniuely your own It s about how we change the world Maass saidhttpwriterunboxedcom20121003t One of the most lessons Maass imparts to writers is the need to dig deep into their own emotions to create high impact characters and stories The characters who resonate most widely today don t merely reflect our times they reflect ourselves That s true whether we re talking about genre fare historicals satire or serious literary stuff he writes Revealing human truths means transcending tropes peering into the past with fresh eyes unearthing all that is hidden and moving beyond what is easy and comfortable to write what is hard and even painful to face Get out of the past Get over trends To write high impact 21st century fiction you must start by becoming highly personal Find your voice yes but than that challenge yourself to be unafraid independent open aware and true to your own heart You must become your most authentic self Maass urges writers to consider carefully their characters inner and outer journeys These journeys are different but inter connected Each chapter ends with a series of uestions and advice specific to character and storyAction and tension are important to sustain the reader s interest but Maass urges writers to consider impact He writes Clever twists and turns are only momentarily attention grabbing Relentless forward driving action high tension and cliffhangers do serve to eep readers eyeballs on the page but don t necessarily engage their hearts By the same token a dutifully rendered reality reviewers call such writing closely observed may cause readers to catch their breath once in a while but the effect doesn t last long Not enough is happening and when it does it feels underwhelming How then can commercial novelists construct plots that have true power How can literary writers conjure events that give their work long lasting effect The answer in all cases is to create events of enormous impact If an event is external excavate its inner meaning If a moment is internal push it out the door and make it do something large real permanent and hard to miss Whatever your assignment you won t find it easy It s not natural miss Whatever your assignment you won t find it easy It s not natural you since your tendency is to hold back If you are a novice writer I recommend first reading Writing the Breakout Novel before tackling this book If you are an experienced writer I highly recommend this book Don s my agent I m a New York Times best selling novelist already This book is making my next book better Lots betterThis isn t a How To Write a Best Seller paint by numbers This is a book that asks YOU uestions that make YOU dig deep to write the best book you can if you re willing to do the wor. And commerical Like Writing the Breakout Novel and The Fire in Fiction this is intended to be a how to with extensive practical tools and plenty of examples from recent novels About the Author Donald Maass heads the Donald Maass Literary Agency in New York City which represents than 150 novelists and sells than 150 novels every year to publishers in America and overseas He is a past president of the Association of Authors Representatives Inc and is the author of several books of interest to fiction writers including Writing the Breakout Novel The Fire in Fiction and The Breakout Novelist all from Writer's Digest Boo. ,

Ere I had not considered before like his discussion of cool vs warm like his vision of 21st Century fiction and novelists but none of it gets a lot of detailed attention Donald Maass has a great eye but he is not a writer He obviously nows about writing publishable successful fiction than we do His examples are wonderful varied and contemporary Maybe he s used to writers who hear his uestions and comments and can deliver on that alone Maass wants results not hand holding Where you can handle it this book may be a gem Where you re not uite there you may need to turn to other authors who will break it down for you Ultimately I think Maass is primarily an agent a producer a businessman which is fine and not a writer or even a teacher of writing All writers can benefit and learn from his analysis I suppose the degree depends on your experience nowledge and abilityEach chapter ends with uestions I think it May Be Best To Read This Book When You Have be best to read this book when you have draft to contemplate as you read because the uestions will spur on your thinking if they are relevant to what you re working on Some uestions may strike a chord another day with another novel draft or not at all never Some uestions even struck me as lame redundant or foolishBut there were enough good uestions that applied to various masterpieces on my hard drive that you will some day treasure so I will go back to this book again And againBut without a specific draft to contemplate I think the uestions value could easily be underestimated or even completely missedSo four stars And to all those reviewers who gave it five stars Come on Donald Maass is not going to accept your trash just because you issed his ass on Goodreads And If He And if he on my exceptional final copies because of this 4 star review then then phooey I always find Donald Maass books on writing enormously helpful and this book was no exception Although some of the content seemed to be similar to his book The Fire in Fiction the sections on deepening the emotional intensity were excellent and much needed at this stage in my current work in progress I enjoy the exercisesuestions he gives at the end of each chapter I don t sit down and implement them all but they are certainly good food for thought especially if you have a scene that just isn t working but you re not sure why I d recommend this book to any writer How I Came To Read This Book I was researching some good recent writing tomes and this one is pretty high ranked on Goodreads so I gave it a whirl The Plot Essentially Donald Maass is deconstructing what makes runaway bestsellers in today s literary world what they are He notes early on that many of today s top books defy genre but still have commonalities namely by tapping into the toolbox of high impact st I would rank this book up with STORY by Robert McKee as one of the most intelligent books ever written about writing fiction And frankly this book is accessible than McKee s textbookI ve always loved Maass s writing how to materials and this was no disappointment However I have published 45 novels and taught novel writing for years and this book challenged even me to absorb the full message within it It is so dense packed with ideas and expressed so deeply that I literally had to read this book one sentence at a time stopping to re read each sentence in places But it s THAT brilliant It was worth itI hate to say it s not a book for a beginning writer because I suspect any writer will find many pearls of wisdom in this book But to really understand what Maass is getting at will take a fair bit of concentration thought patience and deep examination of your writing This is not a book for the dash off cheap fiction fast writerMr Maass is clearly a master of understanding fiction like few other people I ve ever had the pleasure of reading or listening to And in this book he s ind enough to share his most intellectual take on fiction writing no holds barred He doesn t hold back on the complexity or profundity of his ideas and for that I am extremely grateful It s rare for me at this level of my writing career to run into someone wh. Ry fiction different from twentieth century fiction It's a real issue attested by slush piles that are chock full of stories that are weak because they adhere to rules feel old fashioned or in some other way are written the outdated way that writers think they should write in order to get published By explaining the techniues of high impact and often best selling recent novels expert author and literary agent Don Maass will push novelists beyond genre boudaries beyond outdated styles beyond their safety zone to ways of writing fiction that are personal uniue contemporary and excellent in ways that are both literary. ,