Dramatica can be Positively Inscrutable at Times
Firstly, thank-you for the many articles on your site. As you know, Dramatica can be positively inscrutable at times, so without them, if I hadn't given up on Dramatica entirely, I probably would have ended up being thoroughly frustrated.
I just finished writing my first novel, Gable Street. I've been through nine revisions, and one of my ongoing struggles has been trying to make my story fit inside the traditional paradigms. It just didn't, so I gave up and wrote it the way my own psyche was telling me to write it.
With it all wrapped up at last, I set about to write the synopsis and queries. I have struggled for months with no success. Funny that one can write an 83,000-word novel and not be able to condense it. According to the story gurus that's because I must not be a good writer. I reject that notion. I've written a very good book.
So the reason I'm writing to you is to thank you for this blog site. Now that I've found Dramatica, I know my book is good, and I also know why I've struggled to write a synopsis. It's because the same gurus who tell you that you must have three acts, darkest moment, final battle, etc. etc/, also tell you how to write a synopsis. I didn't even understand what the story goal of my novel was until I found this site. The deficiency was not in my story, it was in the three-act template and the one-dimensional, narrow, linear narrative touted by the gurus. Now that I know that, I know who my protagonist is (surprisingly not my main character), and that there are four story through lines, I can describe my novel to agents. Using Dramatica to analyze my contents, everything fell into place.
Thank you so much for all these insightful and well crafted articles. They have made all the difference for me. When I write my next book, I'll be starting with Dramatica and maybe story structure will come clear in less time. It's also gratifying to know that we can trust our own psyches to lay out the story for us if we just listen to it, because that's what I mostly did.
-- Carolyn Hunt
Until I Stumbled Across Your Site
I'd been trying to implement Dramatica in my writing for years. By the end, Dramatica was nothing more than a bungled mystery of vague concepts and seemingly unnecessary complexities suited to navel-gazing than actually getting any writing done...
...until I stumbled across your site.
So thanks for sharing all these great insights. SO helpful.
-- Wil Arndt
Thanks! I do feel as though I'm recognizing things with greater clarity and speed than before. For example, I think I had Moulin Rouge's Domains/Concerns locked in my head by the time they finished the "Spectacular! Spectacular!" pitching song. The method to your madness is working!