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The Science Behind Storytelling — and Why It Matters

The Science Behind Storytelling — and Why It Matters | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

by Gavin McMahon

 

"As presenters we want people to pay attention, be engaged and remember the message. The key to doing that? Science now says it involves storytelling: Stories stimulate emotions, which may be the key to better learning, attention, memory and decision making.

 

"When we listen to stories, more of the brain lights up, according to Annie Murphy Paul, author of “Brilliant: The New Science of Smart.” Stories cause your neurons to fire the same way they would if you were doing the actual action talked about. For example, if you were listening to someone talk about kicking a ball, the motor part of the brain that would help you kick a ball in real life lights up."


Via Jim Lerman
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Sarah McElrath's curator insight, December 28, 2013 11:28 AM

You really can gain experience through reading.

Reason to Write
Why do we write? Why do other people read what we write? What can I possibly have to tell others?
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Now Boarding: Amtrak Writers Residency - New York Times (blog)

Now Boarding: Amtrak Writers Residency - New York Times (blog) | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
PolicyMic
Now Boarding: Amtrak Writers Residency
New York Times (blog)
The wheels have begun moving on Amtrak's plan to offer writers a rolling residency aboard their trains.
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Are You Missing Opportunities to Make Your Writing Stronger?

Are You Missing Opportunities to Make Your Writing Stronger? | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

There are a lot of rules in writing. Some are solid ones, like rules of spelling or grammar, but others are more nebulous, like how to start a scene or whether or not to use adverbs. I like to look at these ambiguous rules as opportunities to improve a sentence or scene. Some "rules" have become common because they're hard to explain to new writers and it's easier to just say no.

But these are all moments that can help you revise your novel and show off your skills. They're opportunities to strengthen your novel.


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KindredReaders's curator insight, February 18, 12:12 PM
Helpful post on when -- and how -- to break the rules.
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Ask Questions to Find Your Story

Ask Questions to Find Your Story | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

So much important information seems to be missing in so many novels—especially first novels by aspiring authors. Novel writing is tricky; there are countless essential components that all need to mesh cohesively. To me, the key to reaching that goal is to ask a lot of questions.


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The Science Behind Storytelling — and Why It Matters

The Science Behind Storytelling — and Why It Matters | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

by Gavin McMahon

 

"As presenters we want people to pay attention, be engaged and remember the message. The key to doing that? Science now says it involves storytelling: Stories stimulate emotions, which may be the key to better learning, attention, memory and decision making.

 

"When we listen to stories, more of the brain lights up, according to Annie Murphy Paul, author of “Brilliant: The New Science of Smart.” Stories cause your neurons to fire the same way they would if you were doing the actual action talked about. For example, if you were listening to someone talk about kicking a ball, the motor part of the brain that would help you kick a ball in real life lights up."


Via Jim Lerman
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Sarah McElrath's curator insight, December 28, 2013 11:28 AM

You really can gain experience through reading.

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Editorially: Write Better

Editorially: Write Better | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

From the Editorially blog:

 

"It’s with all this in mind that we came together to make Editorially, a new collaborative writing and editing platform. We believe that the web is not merely another distribution pipeline, but a unique and deserving space for both reading and writing. Our goal is to support and encourage that writing process — from the first flash of inspiration all the way through to publication, and at every point in between.

 

"Editorially achieves this goal in many ways: a Markdown-based writing environment lets you focus on the words and create clean markup easily; collaboration tools let you invite friends and trusted colleagues to review or edit your work; a document version system lets you mark points in a document’s history and compare versions to see what changed; notes and activity feeds encourage you to reflect on your work, for yourself and for others; and discussion threads recognize that the conversation around a text is just as important as the text itself.

 

"And we’re only getting started. This is not just another text editor: it’s an ecosystem for the writing process. We’ve designed a space that brings you closer to both the words and the people — the only things that matter."

 

 


Via Jim Lerman
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Jim Lerman's curator insight, February 26, 2013 4:11 PM

This could be a really big deal.

 

Right now, Editorially is still in closed beta, but you can sign up for an invitation. They say they will open up very soon.

Sarah McElrath's comment, February 27, 2013 11:52 AM
Very interesting. With the way education is going, this could have a hugh impact in that sector--but only if it isn't priced too high.
Sarah McElrath's curator insight, February 27, 2013 11:53 AM

Could be very useful. Still in closed beta, but you can sign up for a trial or follow on Twitter.

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The 7 Deadly Dialogue Sins - Script Magazine

The 7 Deadly Dialogue Sins - Script Magazine | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
After decades in the biz, David Trottier shares the top dialogue errors he has seen over and over again in screenplays.
Sanna Tyrvainen's insight:

7 very good points to keep in mind.

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How to Write a Screenplay: Script & Screenwriting Tips

How to Write a Screenplay: Script & Screenwriting Tips | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
Learn how to write a screenplay with this screenwriting workshop & class. Learn how to write a movie script with the best software & examples.
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Like the sound of script/screenwriting? 

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Russian meteorite strike highlights asteroid danger

Russian meteorite strike highlights asteroid danger | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
Friday's Russian meteorite strike highlights the need for a global strategy to deal with dangerous asteroids
Sanna Tyrvainen's insight:

Why is it that people need to die first before anything is done. Surely we've experienced it too many times already.

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10 Great Writing iPad Apps for Teachers and Students ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

10 Great Writing iPad Apps for Teachers and Students ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

By Med Kharbach

 

"It is amazing how fast the iTunes app store is growing, no sooner does an app appear then it becomes outdated. It seems like app developers outnumber customers and this is a good thing for us because with the growing competition comes enhanced productivity. However, searching for educational apps to use or recommend for your kids and students is not an easy task and the abundance of apps does not mean anything out there does what its developers claim. Prudence is highly warranted in your selections. This is one reason why I share lists of educational apps with you here. I know not everyone of you has got the time to sift through the bundles of apps there. That being said, today Educational Technology and Mobile Learning has curated for you a new and updated list of some awesome writing apps. Check it out below and don't forget to share with us your feedback. Enjoy"


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How to Write a Book In Your Spare Time | Expert Enough

How to Write a Book In Your Spare Time | Expert Enough | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
Tweet TweetMany people say they would like to write a book.  That statement is usually in the form of “I have this great book idea”, “I’ve always wanted to write ...
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25 Ways To Plot, Plan and Prep Your Story

25 Ways To Plot, Plan and Prep Your Story | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
I always advocate learning how to plot and plan because inevitably someone on the business side of things is going to poke you with a pointy stick and say, "I want this." Thus you will demonstrate ...

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Kurt Vonnegut’s 8 Tips on How to Write a Great Story

Kurt Vonnegut’s 8 Tips on How to Write a Great Story | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
"Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia."

The year

Via Adrian Brown
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8 steps to successful short story.

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Adrian Brown's curator insight, January 14, 2013 1:40 PM

“Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.” 

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The Scripted Blog - The New Way to Create Original Content

The Scripted Blog - The New Way to Create Original Content | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
RT @wordymusic: Current favorite writing startup http://t.co/eGT2I3ai9j https://t.co/0W2YmJJj2I
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A Diet Program—for Your Writing!

A Diet Program—for Your Writing! | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

Have you ever struggled to read writing that felt heavy for no reason? Or thought something you wrote sounded ponderous but weren’t sure why? You want the essence of your writing to come through, but needless words and phrases can get in the way and weigh down your prose. Solution: put your writing on a five-step diet.


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Lesley Hussell's curator insight, February 17, 4:00 AM

This advice for novelists works brilliantly when you're writing for business, too. Trim your website copy, brochures and proposals to spare your readers fluff and repetition. Skinny writing helps to turn your readers into customers.

Lesley Hussell's curator insight, February 17, 4:06 AM

This advice for novelists works brilliantly when you're writing for business, too. Trim your website copy, brochures and proposals to spare your readers fluff and repetition. Skinny writing will help turn those readers into customers.

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Purging Your Writing Fear

Purging Your Writing Fear | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
Writers experience a ridiculous range of emotions throughout the writing process: excitement when a new idea comes along; satisfaction and joy when a work-in-progress is completed; and fear at varying intervals between.

Sadly, for every person reading this post, fear is an issue that must be addressed. It stifles creativity, encourages negativity, and exponentially increases our chances of failure. It’s a toxin that poisons us on a basic, human level. And it’s death to the writing process.

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Worst Case Scenario Is Something To Aim For

Worst Case Scenario Is Something To Aim For | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

Sometimes in life we get worried and worked up about something and it turns out not to be as bad as we had feared. The terrible thing we were convinced was about to happen doesn’t materialise. It’s good when it turns out that way. In real life. 

 

In a story, however, that kind of build up and release is not rewarding, it’s disappointing.


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WRITING COMPETITIONS 2013 | writingclassesforkids.com

WRITING COMPETITIONS 2013 | writingclassesforkids.com | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

Via BookChook, Dennis T OConnor, Jim Lerman
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This is a tough audience ;)

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Dennis T OConnor's curator insight, February 1, 2013 9:00 AM

A chance for your young writers to find an audience!

Sharrock's curator insight, February 1, 2013 11:00 AM

A way to encourage creativity and to support creative students.

Sharrock's curator insight, February 1, 2013 11:01 AM

A way to encourage creativity and to support creative students.

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10 Storytelling Elements That Work

10 Storytelling Elements That Work | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

There’s a reason for why certain storytelling elements just keeps coming back, again and again.

 

Well, it’s because they work.

 

I’ve done some research and collected the different storytelling elements in one place.

 

Here we go:


Via Gregg Morris, Judith van Praag, Sarah McElrath, Jim Lerman
Sanna Tyrvainen's insight:

I think we should all do this every now and again; reflect the above list to your life or to one day of our life. I'm sure it would make our lives feel much more eventful and exciting.

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Judith van Praag's curator insight, February 8, 2013 11:06 AM

Years ago, while studying screenwriting with John Truby I used the graph I drew after his story elements class to understand life. Over time I put together the elements that would make up the novel I'm finishing now.


Seeing this list, I immediately think: Oh, that looks like the timeline of my first marriage.
Which makes me want to add:

 

Stories don't need to have a happy ending, as long as the reader knows there are next steps that will be taken. Such endings make us long for more, for a sequal. Some writers do, for that very reason end with "to be continued".

Sometimes, or often, The End heralds a New Beginning.

Sarah McElrath's curator insight, February 11, 2013 7:38 AM

I have heard Donna Napoli describe #3 as "the extraordinary on an ordinary day."

BookChook's curator insight, February 11, 2013 7:36 PM

Good to use as a scaffold with older kids who want to write fiction. Maybe change some of the language? 

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How to balance work and life

How to balance work and life | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
Finding it a struggle to manage your work/life balance? Read these tips...
Sanna Tyrvainen's insight:

How to remember what life is all about.

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The Other Side of the Story: Five Edits to Strengthen Your Writing, Right Now

The Other Side of the Story: Five Edits to Strengthen Your Writing, Right Now | Reason to Write | Scoop.it

By Janice Hardy

 

"Today, I'd like to share a few of those weak area words that often pull me out of a story. Some words, phrases and sentence structures that I've seen (and commented on) in many a critique. If you have these things in your manuscript, please remember that there's nothing inherently wrong with these words and phrases, they're just commonly seen hanging around weak prose. So if something feels off in your work or you're looking for that next step to improve your craft, these are some options to try. "


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Sarah McElrath's curator insight, February 13, 2013 9:51 PM

Good list of editing tips. 

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Being Late Dreams

Being Late Dreams | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
  Being late dreams or dreams of missing an appointment or connection are very common, due to the fact that...Read More »
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Are you ever late in your dreams? Read what it might mean:

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Sam Bain and Jesse Armstrong: Comedy Writing Masterclass | BAFTA Guru

Sam Bain and Jesse Armstrong: Comedy Writing Masterclass | BAFTA Guru | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
Sam Bain and Jesse Armstrong, the minds behind Peep Show and Fresh Meat, give BAFTA Guru a comedy writing masterclass in this video interview.
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Top Ten Screenplay Essentials – What is a Screenplay?

Top Ten Screenplay Essentials – What is a Screenplay? | Reason to Write | Scoop.it
There are many parts to building a screenplay. It's a mistake to think you just sit down and write one.
Sanna Tyrvainen's insight:

Anyone who is interested, this is a very straight forward website giving you good tips on screenwriting.

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