The Emotional Craft of Fiction, How to Write the Story Beneath the Surface, by Donald Maass
“Engage Your Readers with Emotion.
While writers might disagree over showing versus telling or plotting versus pantsing, none would argue this: If you want to write strong fiction, you must make your readers feel.
The reader’s experience must be an emotional journey of its own, one as involving as your characters’ struggles, discoveries, and triumphs are for you.
That’s where The Emotional Craft of Fiction comes in. Veteran literary agent and expert fiction instructor Donald Maass shows you how to use story to provoke a visceral and emotional experience in readers.”
Get. This. Book.
Next, get every other book by Donald Maass, and, read/re-read them a million times.
Mr. Maass is a literary agent who know the business, what works, what gets you in the door, and most importantly, understands how to write in a way that your readers will love.
This book changes everything , and made me realize how emotions are neither valued, or taught in contemporary America. I had never really thought about emotions, let alone how to infuse them into my writing. But if you’ve ever sobbed your way through a book, and later declare your undying love for said book, you’ll instantly see his point: Humans want to feel things.
Do you mourn certain characters as much, or more than, actual people you have know who have died? Yes, Sirius Black, my sweet, beloved Snuffles, Yes I do.
Does the unfairness of Cinderella being locked in her room when they bring *her* slipper to ***her*** freaking house make you stab-y?
When Elizabeth Bennet’s stupid sister Lydia runs off with stupid Mr. Creepington of Whatevershire, thereby ruining the entire family… Ugh.
These are examples of: Emotions. Justice, challenge, death-defying, cruelty, all of Dickens…Emotion is what makes a book compelling. People agreeing with each other in safe, comfortable surroundings is a television commercial, not a book.
Don’t do it.
What did you think? Have you read this, or other books by this author? What was your favorite part? Is there another, similar book that you prefer? Is there anything you wish the author explained in greater detail? Do you disagree with something they said? Let me know in the comments section, below. Thanks!
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