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Writing for Story: Craft Secrets of Dramatic…

Writing for Story: Craft Secrets of Dramatic Nonfiction (Reference) (1986)

by Jon Franklin

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A valuable lesson for writers of both fiction and especially nonfiction. Make mistakes in the outline so the need for deep rewrites is eliminated. While the concept is appealing, so far it hasn't worked for me. I will keep trying, perhaps after rereading the book. ( )
  cwlongshot | Jul 25, 2011 |
The Bible of narrative-driven journalism, this book is the best introduction to writing long-form creative non-fiction that I've ever seen. ( )
  KelMunger | Jan 25, 2007 |
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To the memories of Benjamin Max Franklin, who taught me that words are sharper than switchblades and G. Vern Blasdell, who showed me how to use them without cutting myself
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0452272955, Paperback)

One of Ludwig Miës van der Rohe's favorite aphorisms was that "God is in the details." Jon Franklin would beg to differ. A pretty turn of phrase is no use at all, says he, if you don't have a firm structure on which to hang it. Franklin pioneered the field of creative nonfiction by applying fiction's classical complication-resolution form to standard nonfiction (specifically to news stories, most of which, he states, are generally "endings without beginnings attached"). Instead of focusing on style, grammar, and word use, as do many books on writing, Writing for Story provides a rigorous lesson in building a nonfiction story (short or long) that has structural integrity. Franklin advocates starting with an outline, writing the climax first, and engaging in other grueling tasks that seem like hard work because they are.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:11 -0400)

The new "nonfiction"--the adaptation of storytelling techniques to journalistic articles in the manner of Truman Capote, Tom Wolfe, and John McPhee--is an innovative genre that has been awarded virtually every Pulitzer Prize for literary journalism since 1979. And now Jon Franklin, himself a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and undisputed master of the great American nonfiction short story, shares the secrets of his success. Franklin shows how to make factual pieces come alive by applying the literary techniques of complication/resolution, flashback, foreshadowing, and pace. He illustrates his points with a close analysis and annotation of two of his most acclaimed stories, so that the reader can see, step-by-step, just how they were created. This lively, easy-to-follow guid combines readability and excitement with the best of expository prose and illuminates the techniques that beginning journalists--and more experienced ones, too--will find immensely helpful: Stalking the true short story Drafting an effective outline Structuring the rough copy Polishing like a pro and the tips, tools, and techniques that will put your stories on the cutting edge… (more)

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