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  • Strong on character development, but...

    I was really looking forward to this book, as I'd enjoyed Lisa Cron's "Wired for Story", but I was disappointed that this one is so heavily focused on character-driven fiction and character development. An early chapter promises to address how to adapt the methodology to plot-driven genres such as crime, thrillers and speculative fiction, but this amounted to little more than a handful of sentences. I would also have liked to see some concrete examples of how the process of managing the "scene cards in development" and "scenes" folders is intended to work, other than a vague "it's an organic process". And the idea of numbering the scenes - and then presumably having to update all the numbers every time you move a scene - seemed awfully cumbersome (I know - I've tried it with chapters in the past). Compared to the wealth of examples on how to fill in the scene template (which is admittedly a very useful tool), we were given almost nothing to go on when it came to organising those scenes - not so much as a single Scrivener screenshot. In summary: if you're writing a novel that focuses on a single character's inner journey, following the Story Genius method step-by-step will undoubtedly help you get off to a solid start. If on the other hand you're writing a thriller, an epic fantasy, or some other genre with a large cast and/or world-changing events, be prepared to cherry-pick the relevant ideas and tweak the concepts to work with your genre. Either way, once you're actually trying to finish the book, you're kinda on your own.

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    6 of 11 people found this review helpful

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