Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Writing How-To Books and Teen Spirit

I've been prepping for a writers retreat presentation so I read a few books for that.

Save the Cat by Blake Snyder is a how-to book for screenplays, and you might not think it would apply to novel writing, but it's great. I loved his advice for how to make characters likable, and his tips on pacing especially. He had lots of knowledge about the business and is just breezy and likable himself. This book gets an A+ from me.

Description and Setting by Ron Rozwell was another one I studied. It had some good info about how to make settings come alive. It didn't get as specific as I needed it to for this presentation, so it wasn't as useful, but I do think someone could benefit from his tips. They were just more general than what I needed this time.

I also read The Teachings of George Albert Smith, which is what the adult Sunday School class is studying at church this year. I work with the kids during that hour, so I just read ahead. I loved especially the chapters on kindness. He seemed like such a kind man. The story about how there were some crusty construction workers being crude and a neighbor berated them for being pottymouthed out in front of President Smith's house. He, instead, whipped up some lemonade and brought them all a glass. They were much more respectful after being shown love and kindess. Great man!

We watched Teen Spirit on Netflix streaming. It was from ABC Family, so we made the mistake of thinking it would be okay for our family. Uh, no. We had to shut it off while the kids were up. Later we finished it, and it was then I realized it was rated TV-14. Gotta check the ratings! The story is a snotty popular girl dies and has to help the nerdy girl become prom queen in a week's time or else be banished to hell. Silly premise. 2 1/2 star show.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Jennifer, these sound like some pretty good reads. Thanks for sharing. How do you find time to read so much? Maybe you can share some pointers.