@amit's notes

Take Off Your Pants!




Simply put, a story is a character arc—a personality making a progression from an emotional or psychological Point A to an emotional or psychological Point B. Story is all about internal growth, not external events. It’s a character’s struggle to shed old behaviors or beliefs that have held him back from becoming his “true self”—the person he was always “meant to be.” (Location 392)

Make your character flawed in a serious, big, scary, potentially life-wrecking way. When you start with a badly flawed character, the arc will be all about correcting that flaw—about your character growing into a better person, the kind of mythic hero archetype he was “meant to be” but couldn’t become until this adventure—the events of your plot—pushed him to change himself for the better. (Location 433)

The flaw is the engine that drives your entire book, from hooking your reader’s interest to propelling the plot to its climax—so choose your flaw with care, and make it count. (Location 561)

Theme serves as one of your most useful guide posts. It is your handy-dandy measuring tape, allowing you to quickly assess ideas for their utility. (Location 892)

Think of your plot—the sequential, “external” events of your book—as a physical structure that supports your main character’s journey. Visualize the plot-structure as a bridge stretching from Point A to Point B. That bridge is made out of three kinds of bricks, and each brick is made from character arc, theme, or Story Core. You can re-arrange those bricks however you please, but you will only use bricks from those three sources. (Location 947)

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Take Off Your Pants!