HomeGroupsTalkMoreZeitgeist
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Story Engineering

by Larry Brooks

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3011864,687 (4.01)3
What makes a good story or a screenplay great? The vast majority of writers begin the storytelling process with only a partial understanding where to begin. Some labor their entire lives without ever learning that successful stories are as dependent upon good engineering as they are artistry. But the truth is, unless you are master of the form, function and criteria of successful storytelling, sitting down and pounding out a first draft without planning is an ineffective way to begin. Story Engineering starts with the criteria and the architecture of storytelling, the engineering and design of a story--and uses it as the basis for narrative. The greatest potential of any story is found in the way six specific aspects of storytelling combine and empower each other on the page. When rendered artfully, they become a sum in excess of their parts. You'll learn to wrap your head around the big pictures of storytelling at a professional level through a new approach that shows how to combine these six core competencies which include:    * Four elemental competencies of concept, character, theme, and story structure (plot)    * Two executional competencies of scene construction and writing voice The true magic of storytelling happens when these six core competencies work together in perfect harmony. And the best part? Anyone can do it!… (more)

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 3 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
I loved and hated this book. The advice it gives I genuinely believe is good advice. The ideas I can believe in. Larry Brooks suggests the use of ‘six competencies’.

Despite this being a book about how to write fiction I shall review as the book suggests I write.

Concept: What if I did indeed know how to plot my ramblings and somehow could make it into a story worth reading?

Theme: My impression from this book was if you follow the instructions then you can write a good story. But you have to do as you’re told!

Scene Construction: Short chapters which are easy to navigate helped when I needed to flick back and check what I’m meant to do. If I wanted to work on scenes then it was just a matter of flicking to the correct section and reading a page or two.

Structure: The six competencies are easy to remember, there are chapters and examples for each aspect of the competencies. It feels clean-cut. Organised.

Character: I felt there were two characters in this book, the superior Larry King and the inadequate me. Yes, maybe I have potential, but I felt placed back in my spot as a ‘wannabe’ writer. Nothing Larry King said was completely new or surprising. Yet I needed it said.

Voice: I can’t help but feel angry at Larry King. I hate the smugness of his superiority. So what if I’m small and stupid. Sometimes it’s just a matter of gritting your teeth and accepting that the condescending voice knows best.

So in conclusion, Larry King writes in a way which makes me angry, but maybe that actually reflects my own insecurities in writing. However when I write it’s going to sit on the desk, on top of the dictionary, helping me every step of the way. ( )
  Happenence | Oct 2, 2020 |
If this book was whittled down to 1/3 of its current size, it would be a useful, entry level book on writing. Instead the book is written like a Mormon housewife blog. You came for a mashed potato recipe, but first there's approximately 2,000 words about grandma's boring crocheting habit which somehow dribbles into a whine about youngest daughter's minor attempt at independence and ends on a gushing story about how the mediocre husband is an excellent provider by simply continuing to breathe in the same household, even if he forgot to pick up the f***ing potatoes like you asked. By the end, your appetite for mashed potatoes is gone, along with the curling iron Mormon housewife mom threw out when she found it in youngest daughter's room.

I take that back, that sounds fun, this book bored me. The book is full of fluff, and I mean full. There were entire chapters containing only one, tiny line of instructional information. There are 6 core competencies which are better displayed, even when not numbered, in every other writing book I've read, because the author just presented them as they were, rather than burying them in banter. There's a 4 structure write up, which is literally just Act I, Act II - Part 1, Act II - Part 2, and Act 3, also known as the breakdown discussed in every single other writing book. I'll admit I like the idea of boxing each of these structures because I'm visual but again, I've read it better in other selections.

The same information is repeated again and again in new, duller ways. The same analogies are repeated again and again in newer, duller ways. The organization is poor, in part because the author jams fluff in between pertinent facts, side tracking you away from the information you need to reach for that last statement to make sense. The author toots his own horn and bashes perfectly reasonable writing instruction, while failing to realize he's giving the same instruction, just in a long, drawn out, boring way. Also, let's not forget how much of the book the author spends discussing how his intro-level writing instruction is better than everyone else's. I sure didn't find any evidence of that but optimism is cute.

Beyond disappointed, as I see this book trotted out everywhere as THE writing book and I literally skimmed entire chapters trying to find a hidden gem. In the end, if you've never read a writing book and you enjoy what I think of us white-male-media, here's the book for you. If you've read a variety of writing books and reached an intro level sense of story structure, I don't see how this book will provide anything new. ( )
  lclclauren | Sep 12, 2020 |
Repetitive and very much like an informercial about itself. Considering I already have the book, I don't need you to try to sell it to me, I need to get to the meat of it.
I abandoned it by the time it started talking about the stuff it's actually about because I was just so mind-boggedly bored and annoyed with it I could just not stand it anymore. ( )
  AshuritaLove | May 24, 2020 |
Wow. This book blew the doors off my concepts of storytelling by taking me to the practical step-by-step approach to planning a story. Satisfying reader expectations and surprise can both be achieved through careful design of the story. ( )
  JoniMFisher | Sep 19, 2019 |
Quite simply: this book is revelational. I'll never look at story structure the same. If I had the ambition and energy, I'd write this review in classic four-part story structure form. But I won't. So, you ask, if the book's so gosh-darn revelational, why not five stars? Gah. I'm not quite sure why. Brooks's book just doesn't seem to warrant five stars. Call me stingy. On a side note, Brooks appears to be the (far less successful) brother of Terry Brooks, he of the variable Shannara series. Which fact might serve as explanation for the massive, gigantic, humongous, oppressive, towering, looming chip of resentment that sits on Larry's writerly shoulder and seems almost to dictate full sentences at a time. I wouldn't go so far as to call the chip a muse, but the chip is not silent. Maybe better to imagine the chip on Larry's shoulder as a kind of bullhorn through which he shouts at the reader, sometimes. I'm not saying this well. The chip, basically, is a resentful tone that serves as this book's substrate. But that's all it is: a tone. I mention the tone only because others have mentioned it. But don't be distracted or put off by the tone. What Larry has to say is worth putting up with his (sometimes) off-putting manner of saying it. By book's end, I'd even grown fond of the tone. As if you'd care, though, reader of this review. You're so sure of yourself, your judgments. Read this book first, and then get back to me. We'll talk. (That, by the way, was an e.g. of the tone.) ( )
  evamat72 | Mar 31, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
For Laura and Nelson
First words
As a bit of a cynic—a result of actually having worked in the writing business—I asked myself if the world really needs another book about writing.
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

What makes a good story or a screenplay great? The vast majority of writers begin the storytelling process with only a partial understanding where to begin. Some labor their entire lives without ever learning that successful stories are as dependent upon good engineering as they are artistry. But the truth is, unless you are master of the form, function and criteria of successful storytelling, sitting down and pounding out a first draft without planning is an ineffective way to begin. Story Engineering starts with the criteria and the architecture of storytelling, the engineering and design of a story--and uses it as the basis for narrative. The greatest potential of any story is found in the way six specific aspects of storytelling combine and empower each other on the page. When rendered artfully, they become a sum in excess of their parts. You'll learn to wrap your head around the big pictures of storytelling at a professional level through a new approach that shows how to combine these six core competencies which include:    * Four elemental competencies of concept, character, theme, and story structure (plot)    * Two executional competencies of scene construction and writing voice The true magic of storytelling happens when these six core competencies work together in perfect harmony. And the best part? Anyone can do it!

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.01)
0.5
1 2
1.5
2 3
2.5 1
3 6
3.5 1
4 17
4.5 3
5 19

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 154,450,979 books! | Top bar: Always visible