The Language of Story (Master Class)

Outlining is a contentious topic among authors. Some writers swear by the process; others maintain that outlining is the hallmark of amateurism and that being able to face down the blank page with nothing but your raw talent and an unhealthy amount of self-loathing is the hallmark of the real artiste. For his part, Scott is in the former camp of incurable outliners. But even if you’re not, crafting effective fiction is the same process for all writers — tapping into the essential shape of story. That’s the arrangement of plot and subplot and the assembly of narrative events that are the raw materials of drama.

If you’re drawn to mucking around with story at the outline stage — and especially if you’ve tried outlining before and have been frustrated when your sense of your story goes off track — this workshop will show you a slightly different approach to plotting that can make a huge difference in your ability to visualize and clarify your story. And even if you’ve already decided that outlining doesn’t suit your own style of storytelling, exploring the process of outlining in the particular way this workshop presents it will sharpen your understanding of the language of story — the underlying mechanics that determine how plot, character, and conflict weave together to create compelling fiction.