Where Do the Big Ideas Live?

Susan DeFcraft, fictionLeave a Comment

a person overlooking a horizon that is colored blue, yellow, orange, and pink

When you work with me as a book coach, we start with an outlining process I’ve developed–a process that helps the writer translate their big ideas for their novel into a fundamentally solid plan for the story. It’s a process that gets to the heart of the project: What’s most meaningful for the writer about the story. Why they feel … Read More

What Makes a Story Feel Like a Story?

Susan DeFcraft, fiction, UncategorizedLeave a Comment

young woman with bangs holding a red phone up to her ear

What’s the difference between a story and a narrative relating a series of events? Once upon a time, dear reader, I might have answered, “Causality.” Because it’s a basic truth I’ve discovered as a book coach and editor: if you have plot that’s basically episodic—this happens, then that, and then this thing over here—the single most effective thing you can … Read More

Maybe It’s Not Your Plot

Susan DeFcraft, fictionLeave a Comment

Recently, I presented at a virtual summit for writers entitled “Escape the Plot Forest”—a full week of talks with nearly 30 speakers, with 3,000 people registered. Which is ample evidence of what pretty much every independent editor and book coach knows: Plot is the number one thing novelists and would-be novelists tend to struggle with, and it’s what people come … Read More

The Goldilocks Principle of Interiority

Susan DeFcraft, fiction, Writing resourcesLeave a Comment

man in bowler hat with an open mouth

There are a lot of things in life where either too much or too little won’t work, and when it comes to fiction, interiority is definitely one of them. When I talk about interiority, I’m talking about what happens inside the point-of-view (POV) character, as opposed to what happens in the external world of the story. This might take the … Read More