Little Dude LOVES Toy Story. “Buzz. Buzz? Buzz?”
We must have watched “Buzz” 50 times. Easy.
Other than the awesome graphics, it’s impressive how amazing the Toy Story story-lines are.
I’ve never ventured into the world of fiction writing. Although, I think it would be very cool. But it’s a bit intimidating. Creating a great story from nada seems like a lot of hard work. With a good chance of the end result being crapola.
Luckily, we have help from Pixar – the writers of Toy Story. One of Pixar’s story artists, Emma Coats, recently tweeted a series of 22 “story basics.” Pretty great to get the inside scoop.
Not sure if I’ll ever head down the fiction path, but it’s nice to know I have some great basics.
Here’s the top 10, and you can find the full list here…
#1: You admire a character for trying more than for their successes.
#2: You gotta keep in mind what’s interesting to you as an audience, not what’s fun to do as a writer. They can be v. different.
#3: Trying for theme is important, but you won’t see what the story is actually about til you’re at the end of it. Now rewrite.
#4: Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.
#5: Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You’ll feel like you’re losing valuable stuff but it sets you free.
#6: What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them. Challenge them. How do they deal?
#7: Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard, get yours working up front.
#8: Finish your story, let go even if it’s not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.
#9: When you’re stuck, make a list of what WOULDN’T happen next. Lots of times the material to get you unstuck will show up.
#10: Pull apart the stories you like. What you like in them is a part of you; you’ve got to recognize it before you can use it.
Hats off to Kottke.org for sharing another great link.