Alecc0 Presents: How To Write a Story - Tips from a Professional Masterclass

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How To Write a Story - Tips from a Professional Masterclass

Author's note: These notes are from a professional screenwriting masterclass I took last year. Please do not share with others off Wattpad. This is a special upload just for the Block Party. Hope you find the information here helpful. Happy writing!

Story and Storytelling

What is a story?

It is the telling of a fictional (born out of the imagination) or factual (born out of reality) series of events, in a sequential or non-sequential order, that make up a conflict-ridden journey and/or quest by an active character (protagonist) or characters, who want to restore order to what was their 'ordinary world' that is now changing, and by doing so, he/she/they are changed internally and reborn into a new, external world for better or for worse.

What is the function, the purpose, of storytelling?

Storytelling is the conveying of events in words, sound and/or images, often by improvisation or embellishment. Stories or narratives have been shared in every culture as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation, edification and instilling moral values.

What are myth and legends?

A Myth is a traditional or legendary story, usually concerning some being or hero or event, with or without a determinable basis of fact or a natural explanation, especially one that is concerned with deities or demigods and explains some practice, rite, or phenomenon of nature.

A Legend is presumed to have some basis in historical fact and tends to mention real people or events. Historical fact morphs into a legend when the truth has been exaggerated to the point that real people or events have taken on a romanticized, "larger than life" quality. In contrast, a myth is a type of symbolic storytelling that was never based on fact. Throughout time, myths have sought to explain difficult concepts (e.g., the origin of the universe) with the help of common story devices, such as personification and allegories.

Examples of myths: Norse, Arthurian, Irish, Greek, Roman, Nordic.

A fairy tale?

A fairy tale is a short story that typically features human and/or inhuman-fantasy characters such elves, fairies, giants, gnomes, goblins, mermaids, trolls, or witches, and usually involves the elements of magic or enchantments. Unlike legends (which suggest that they are historical fact set in an actual time in human history) fairy tales have few references to religion and actual places, people, and events and take place in a fictitious time. Many of today's fairy tales have evolved from centuries-old stories that have appeared, with variations, in multiple cultures around the world.

The older fairy tales were intended as didactic moral lessons of a serious nature for young adults as rites of passage into adulthood. They were associated with children as early as the stories by the Brothers Grimm who wrote about children for children. Today, they are considered to be merely fanciful and entertaining children's stories.

A fable?

A fable is a fictional story, in prose or verse, that features animals, mythical creatures, plants, inanimate objects, or forces of nature that are anthropomorphized (given human qualities, such as verbal communication) and that illustrates or leads to an interpretation of a moral lesson.

A parable?

A parable is a succinct, didactic story, in prose or verse, which illustrates one or more instructive lessons or principles. It differs from a fable in that fables employ animals, plants, inanimate objects, or forces of nature as characters, whereas parables have human characters. A parable is a type of analogy, that being a comparison between one thing and another, typically for the purpose of explanation or clarification.

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