Monday, April 29, 2013

212 ~on creativity

29 WAYS TO STAY CREATIVE






Watch this video ’29 ways to stay creative’ by TO-FU Motion Graphics Studio:







*****



Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Friday, April 26, 2013

211 ~book news

FRIDAY LINKS: THE VALUE OF CHANGE






  • Judging ‘Gatsby’ by its cover(s). NYTimes

  • Harry Potter to flatten Gibson Amphitheatre, Curious George Playland. LATimes.


*****



Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order  Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

210 ~on celebrations

HAPPY ST. GEORGE’S DAY!






Today was declared World Book Day by the UNESCO in honor of the death of both authors: William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes.

To commemorate it, I’m giving away a signed copy of Deconstructing INFATUATION I already know who’s the winner.

And it goes to… Norway! Congratulations!

Thanks all for participating. Keep tuned for new giveaways!

Happy St. George’s Day everyone!


*****


Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.


Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Monday, April 22, 2013

209 ~on connecting

I FLEW THOUSANDS OF MILES THROUGH MULTIPLE TIME ZONES TO PHOTOGRAPH ONE MEAL





“Because if I’m not connecting I’m not seeing,
If I’m not seeing I’m not living.”


Penny De Los Santos, author of  Hugo Ortega's Street Food of Mexico , a senior contributing photographer for Saveur and a cookbook photographer.


Watch this video to learn what it was like to take one photo of men eating a meal in Iraq:





*****




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win


Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.



Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Friday, April 19, 2013

208 ~book news

FRIDAY LINKS: I WANT TO BREAK FREE







  • New publisher Authors Trust: Themselves. NYTimes

  • Adele reportedly turns down seven-figure book deal. LATimes.           




*****




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.


                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

207 ~on storytelling

NINE OUT OF TEN WRITERS FAIL AT THE PREMISE


The Anatomy of Story: 22 Steps to Becoming a Master Storyteller explains how a great story works, along with the techniques needed to create one.


All stories move in this way.

“Once a character has a desire, the story ‘walks’ on two ‘legs’: acting and learning. A character pursuing a desire takes actions to get what he wants, and he learns new information about better ways to get it. Whenever he learns new information, he makes a decision, and changes his course of action.”


A good premise is crucial to your success

“What you choose to write about is far more important than any decision you make about how to write it.

Character, plot, theme, symbol—it all comes out of this story idea. If you fail at the premise, nothing else will help. Nine out of ten writers fail at the premise.”

“Premise รจ Star Wars: When a princess falls into mortal danger, a young man uses his skills as a fighter to save her and defeat the evil forces of a galactic empire.”


Developing you premise

“Step 1: Write something that may change your life

Step 2: Look for what’s possible

Step 3: Identify the story challenges and problems

Step 4: Find the designing principle (what organizes the story as a whole)

Step 5: Determine your best character in the idea

Step 6: Get a sense of the central conflict

Step 7: Get a sense of the single cause-and-effect pathway

Step 8: Determine your hero’s possible character change.

Step 9: Figure out the hero’s possible moral choice.

Step 10: Gauge the audience appeal.”


Thinking of the hero and other characters as connected individuals

“We’ll begin by focusing on all your characters together as a part of an interconnected web. Next we’ll individualize each character based on theme and opposition. Then we’ll concentrate on the hero, building him step-by-step. We’ll create the opponent in detail, and we’ll end by working through the character techniques for building conflict over the course of the story.”


Watch this video:







*****




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Monday, April 15, 2013

206 ~on achievement

STEP OUTSIDE YOUR COMFORT ZONE AND STUDY YOURSELF FAILING





A▪CHIEVE▪MENT

The result of countless hours of hard work, often with multiple setbacks.


Joshua Foer, author of Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything has extracted four principles that describe how to push through the OK Plateau to achieve true greatness. 


Watch this video to learn strategies for developing expertise in any field:








*****




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Friday, April 12, 2013

205 ~on stickness

MADE TO STICK

 
Photo Credit: BusinessWeek



Chip Heath & Dan Heath, authors of  Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die ,are interested in how effective ideas are constructed—what make some ideas stick and others disappear.


What sticks? Systematic Creativity

“Highly creative ads are more predictable than uncreative ones. It’s like Tolstoy’s quote: ‘All happy families resemble each other, but each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.’ All creative ads resemble one another, but each loser is uncreative in its own way.”

“But if creative ads consistently make use of the same basic set of templates, perhaps ‘creativity’ can be taught. Perhaps even novices—with no creative experience—could produce better ideas if they understood the templates.”


Simple. Decision paralysis

“Prioritization rescues people from the quicksand of decision angst, and that’s why finding the core is so valuable. The people who listen to us will be constantly making decisions in an environtment of uncertainty. They will suffer anxiety from the need to choose –even when the choice is between two good options.

Core messages help people avoid bad choices by reminding them of what’s important.”


Unexpected. The ‘Gap Theory’ of curiosity

“In 1994, George Loewenstein, a behavioral economist at Carnegie Mellon University, provided the most comprehensive account of situational interest. It is surprisingly simple. Curiosity, he says, happens when we feel a gap in our knowledge.

Loewenstein argues that gaps cause pain. When we want to know something but don’t, it’s like having an itch that we need to scratch. To take away the pain, we need to fill the knowledge gap. We sit patiently through bad movies, even though they may be painful to watch, because it’s too painful not to know how they end.

This ‘gap theory’ of interest seems to explain why some domains create fanatical interest: They naturally create knowledge gaps.”


 Concrete allows coordination

“Concreteness makes targets transparent. Even experts need transparency.

Consider a software start-up whose goal is to build ‘the next great search engine.’ Within the start-up are two programmers with nearly identical knowledge, working in neighboring cubes. To one ‘the next great search engine’ means completeness, ensuring that the search engine returns everything on the Web that might be relevant, no matter how obscure. To the other it means speed, ensuring pretty good results very fast. Their efforts will not be fully aligned until the goal is made concrete.”


*****




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
 an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

204 ~book news

THURSDAY LINKS: PERSPECTIVES OF ART






  • For sale, one Nobel Prize in Literature: The Faulkner Auction. LATimes.

  • The beholder’s response: How the brain responds to ambiguity in art. Big Think.

  • The art of BioShock Infinite Art Book Review. Forbes.


*****




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win


Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

203 ~on screenwriting

SAVE THE CAT!


Save The Cat! The Last Book on Screenwriting You'll Ever Need offers insights to write screenplays but also novels. Blake Snyder founds basic to put the ‘Save the Cat’ scene into movies. It’s the scene where we meet the hero and the hero does something—like saving a cat—that defines who he is and makes us, the audience, like him.


It’s about a guy who…

“The perfect hero is the one who offers the most conflict in the situation, has the longest emotional journey, and has a primal goal we can all root for. Survival, hunger, sex, protection of loved ones, and fear of death grab us.

When committing these discoveries to your logline, you must have an adjective to describe the hero, an adjective to describe the bad guy, and a definite and primal goal or setting.”


The first 10 pages

“The first 10 pages of the script, or first dozen pages at most, is called ‘the set-up.’ If you are like me, and like most readers in Hollywood, this is the make-or-break section where you have to grab me or risk losing my interest.

The set-up is also the place where , if you’re me, the writer, I make sure I’ve introduced or hinted at introducing every character in the A story.

The first 10 pages is also where we start to plant every character tic, exhibit every behavior that needs to be addressed later on, and show how and why the hero will need to change in order to win.”


The immutable laws of screenplay physics: Risking the reader’s attention with so much backstory

“In ‘Along came Polly,’ we find the same problem.  In order to get to risk-averse divorcee Ben Stiller falling in love with crazy girl Jennifer Anniston, the writer has also a lot of pipe to lay. We have to see Ben marry his first wife, follow them on their honeymoon, and watch a Ben catches her in the arms of the scuba instructor.

Sure it’s funny. And we’ll put up with a lot when it comes to any movie than Ben is in. We love Mr. S! But the screenwriter and director (same guy—the funny and talented John Hamburg) risks our attention by laying a ton of story points to get to the reason we came to see this movie: Ben Stiller dating Jennifer Anniston.”


Hi, how are you? I’m fine

“Mike Cheda showed me this simple Bad Dialogue Test: Take a page of your script and cover up the names of the people speaking. Now read the repartee as it goes back and forth between two or more characters. Can you tell who is speaking without seeing the name above the dialogue?
In a good script, every character must speak differently. Every character must have a unique way of saying even the most mundane ‘Hi, how are you? I’m fine’ kind of chat.”




*****


Goodreads Book Giveaway

Deconstructing INFATUATION by Merce Cardus

Deconstructing INFATUATION

by Merce Cardus

Giveaway ends April 23, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win


Click to order I say Who, What, and Where! 
an inspirational novel about the courage to be oneself freely.

Click to order Deconstructing INFATUATION 
a thought-provoking novel about infatuation.

                                                                  

Copyright © 2013 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.