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Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Making Shapely Fiction by Jerome Stern. Here is a book about the craft of writing fiction that is thoroughly useful from the first to the last page—whether the reader is a beginner, a seasoned writer, or a teacher of writing.
You will see how a work takes form and shape once you grasp the principles of momentum, tension, and immediacy. When tension and immediacy Here is a book about the craft of writing fiction that is thoroughly useful from the first to the last page—whether the reader is a beginner, a seasoned writer, or a teacher of writing. When tension and immediacy combine, the story begins.
A special section features an Alphabet for Writers: entries range from Accuracy to Zigzag, with enlightening comments about such matters as Cliffhangers, Point of View, Irony, and Transitions. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published November 17th by W. Norton Company first published More Details Original Title.
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Be the first to ask a question about Making Shapely Fiction. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of Making Shapely Fiction. Aug 30, Lee Klein rated it really liked it. I taught this one and learned from it, too -- it's real clear and funny and comprehensive and efficiently ordered. The basics, but not done in a way that makes you wanna barf. Sep 01, Kate Willis marked it as unfinished.
I read selections from this textbook for my creative writing class. There were a few small tips I picked up from it, but it was mostly unhelpful and had some inappropriate content. There are many other writing books I would rather recommend in a heartbeat. Jul 05, Alan rated it really liked it Shelves: non-fiction. I've read a few of this type of manual and this one looks one of the best. View 2 comments. Jun 30, Philip Athans rated it it was amazing. An interesting and informative basic primer on fiction in general and the short story in particular that's a great place for beginning authors to get acquainted with the language of fiction writing and publishing.
Apr 17, Rebekah rated it really liked it. Recommend to: Aspiring writers. Dec 24, Printable Tire rated it really liked it. This was the "required reading" for a writing class I just took. Since part of taking the class was being able to use Brown University's resources, I ingeniously borrowed it from their library they in turn had to borrow it from SUNY Buffalo.
Now it's quite a bit overdue but since I am persona non grata in the library now I am taking my time. The first part of the book, which deals with different "shapes" of fiction thus explaining the somewhat embarrassing title is excellent.
It's basically a This was the "required reading" for a writing class I just took. It's basically a collection of plots to inspire writing. The A-Z section, though, is a bit didactic, and lacks the fun and creative tone of the first half although the examples of good and bad prose are equally entertaining- where are they from?
It's probably not such a good idea to have examples of bad prose be so much fun in their badness. This section is also somewhat repetitive: what's the difference, really, between voice and style and a million other sections on basically the same topic?
Still, this section has some good advice and insights, and by the end the tone has lightened up a bit and it seems less preachy and patronizing. Altogether this is a very good writing book, as far as writing books go. Mar 27, Robb Lightfoot rated it it was amazing. This is the best book I've read in 5 years on the subject of writing. I say this as someone who owns scores of how-to-write books and has been reading them for the past 40 years.
I came across this book as required reading in the now defunct UC Davis creative writing program. I could see immediately why they chose it.
The first half of the book is outstanding, the second half merely great. The first half discusses a variety of story-forms, structures, that are useful to solve problems or ac Wow. The first half discusses a variety of story-forms, structures, that are useful to solve problems or achieve a result. I've never seen writing described in this manner, it offered solid tips and techniques.
Aug 14, Julie Dill rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: any creative writer. This is one of, if not the best writing manual I've ever read. It's thoughtfully written and it's not geared toward someone who hasn't ever written before. It seems to speak to someone who's been writing since birth, but needs unsubtle nudges in the right direction to sculpt the talent into an intricately wrought topiary, pruning out the The book came close to making me switch from poetry writing to fiction writing in grad school.
Caution: it makes it nearly This is one of, if not the best writing manual I've ever read. Caution: it makes it nearly impossible to ignore the "novel ideas" drawer in your desk. Jul 28, Shannon rated it it was ok.
There's some good general advice for writers in here, but it's all very basic stuff. If you need to know what "plot" is, for example, this is a good place to find out.
I'd use this in a high school writing class, but if you're beyond that level or looking for more advanced advice The list of resources in the back dates to the late 80s or early 90s, so is of minimal use. Sep 07, Ann Douglas rated it it was amazing Shelves: writing , read-in A very helpful writing guide that explains the finer points of writing fiction. The book is divided into a series of topic-specific chapters, each of which focuses on a topic related to fiction writing.
Highly recommended. Jun 10, Sara Batkie added it. An irreverent but thoughtful way to bone up on the basics or just be reminded of what you're doing and why. Well structured to be either read straight through or in the necessary bits and pieces. Highly recommended, even if you think you already know everything about writing.
Jun 07, Liz Shine rated it liked it. This book is an A to Z list exploring the function and importance of some elements of fiction. It'd be great for beginning writers. I read it as a way to launch into a new writing schedule and summer writing.
It held many nice reminders for me. Dec 06, Balbina rated it it was amazing. An informative, entertaining and inspiring reference book on writing fiction.
Reading it made me impatient to sit down and not only write, but revise anything I've ever written so far.
MAKING SHAPELY FICTION Presents Helpful Suggestions and Archetypes for Writers
One problem with learning to write fiction is that there aren't any scales or positions to practice. There's no rational order or sequence in which those elements must be learned. They're all necessary. So Mr. Stern, who directs the writing program at Florida State University, plunges his readers into the middle of things.
Making Shapely Fiction
Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again.