CONTENTS OF THIS PAGE
EXCERPTS OF REVIEWS
"I would recommend this book to all writers, new and not-so-new."
—Carla Trueheart, Readers' Favorite
"Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Scenes and Sequels" is enhanced for the aspiring author with the inclusion of a seventeen page glossary of fiction-writing terms; a four page bibliography; a four page index, and eight pages of end notes. Thoroughly 'reader friendly' in tone, content, and presentation, "Scenes and Sequels" will prove to be an invaluable instruction guide and reference. Very highly recommended for personal, community, and academic library Writing/Publishing reference collections . . . "
—Midwest Book Review
"A rare and mostly engaging dive into the nitty-gritty of scene construction."
SCENE AND SEQUEL
READERS' FAVORITE REVIEW–FIVE STARS
This is the second book I have read by author Mike Klaassen, and I like each one more and more. Scenes and Sequels: How to Write Page-Turning Fiction teaches the writer how to focus on their writing using a closer structure—the method of scenes and sequels. The book explains the process and how to incorporate it into your own fiction writing for a stronger, more action-packed story overall. Scenes are goals, while sequels are responses, and all of these formulas are written out in the book for ease of conceptualization for the writer. Also included are passages that explain troubleshooting, how to read a piece of your own writing and find the problem if you're struggling with a scene, and when to put away the writing if you just can't come up with a proper sequel. The book also explains how to apply the scene and sequel technique and how to examine if what you're writing is a scene or a sequel, which is helpful. Basically, this is a different way to write that will give your writing project the extra action and emotion that it needs and requires for the best possible publication outcome.
In Scenes and Sequels, I enjoyed the Goldilocks example and found that the story breakdown was exactly what was needed to explore the concept of scene and sequel. There are also worksheets to help with your analysis of a specific passage of writing, and I found myself taking notes outside the book so I could reference them later while writing. In addition, Mike Klaassen provides fiction writing terms at the end of the book that should prove helpful to the new writer, or even to someone who has been in the field and needs a refresher. I would recommend this book to all writers, new and not-so-new.
—Carla Trueheart, Readers' Favorite
MIDWEST BOOK REVIEW
Most books about the craft of writing fiction don't even define a scene, much less describe how to write one. Even fewer address sequels. Scenes are the exciting, turbocharged parts of fiction, driving the story forward. Sequels provide a breather, where the focal character can celebrate or lick his wounds and plan his next move. Together, scenes and sequels help create page-turning fiction. The concepts of scenes and sequels were championed by Dwight V. Swain (1915-1992) and Jack M. Bickham (1930-1997). In Scenes and Sequels: How to Write Page-Turning Fiction published author Mike Klaassen deftly builds on the work of Swain and Bickham to create the most comprehensive and concise explanation of scenes and sequels anywhere. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, Scenes and Sequels is enhanced for the aspiring author with the inclusion of a seventeen page glossary of fiction-writing terms; a four page bibliography; a four page index, and eight pages of end notes. Thoroughly 'reader friendly' in tone, content, and presentation, Scenes and Sequels will prove to be an invaluable instruction guide and reference. Very highly recommended for personal, community, and academic library Writing/Publishing reference collections . . .
—Midwest Book Review
Klaassen (Hansel and Gretel, 2016, etc.) discusses the foundational structures of fiction in this how-to guide to writing.
According to the author, the essential one-two punch of writing fiction is the scene, which he defines as "a passage of writing in which a character attempts to achieve a goal," and what he terms the "sequel," a passage of writing in which the character reacts to the resolution of a scene." Although people are generally familiar with the first concept, Klaassen argues that the sequel is just as important, as it places the events of a scene within an emotional context for the character and, thus, for the reader. The book gets into specifics regarding the purposes, goals, and ideal structures of both scenes and sequels, as well as other types of passages that one might encounter (including passages of interiority, activity, and problem-solving), in addition to troubleshooting tips for editing a manuscript. Klaassen also includes an extensive glossary of craft terms that apply to fiction so that the readers may learn how to properly think and talk about their own projects. The author's prose is crisp and clinical, and his book reads quickly despite its interest in minutiae. In this follow-up to his earlier, more comprehensive guide to fiction, 2015's Fiction-Writing Modes, it's fun to see him go deep into one specific area of the craft. It seems, though, that he might have come up with a better term than "sequel" for the introspective passages that follow scenes, given its other, more well-known meaning. The book also devotes an inordinate number of pages to simply explaining its focus, parsing through various definitions and related concepts borrowed from other writing guides. That said, most of Klaassen's dissections of the different types of passages are quite thoughtful and illuminating. Although this book isn't as valuable an aid as Fiction-Writing Modes, it does serve as a useful companion work, and more experienced writers may particularly benefit from its critical analysis.
A rare and mostly engaging dive into the nitty-gritty of scene construction.
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