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BECOME A LUCID STORYTELLER

Sometimes, what a story needs most is hidden from your view

Join the newsletter to learn things like ‘How to Find Your Writing Voice Without a Single Keystroke’ and ’The Plot Structure in Best-selling Novels’.

The Twisted Truth About Becoming the Writer You’re Meant to Be

You’re not fooling anyone. I know what you really look like underneath that human costume. Yep, I know what you are, and it’s not normal. In fact, you’re not even from this planet. You’re a stranger visiting a strange land. You don’t remember though, do you? Huh,...

The Most Overlooked Thing You DON’T Need to Become a Real Writer

My best friend no showed my wedding. To be fair he was only my best friend during my teenage years, but he still missed my wedding. It went down like this… I invited him to my wedding. He RSVPed he’d attend with a guest. He no showed. A few years later I ran into him,...

Open Letter to the Humans Who Haunt Me

The phone rang but I didn't answer. It was him. It was her. It was you. I thought the humans expected something from me. Not anything of value, just more than I could offer. These people cared about me, and I cared about them, but I didn’t know how to show it, so I...

3 Ways to Create a Villain (Who Audiences Want & Heroes Need)

Remember the Create a Villain post I wrote for the awesome Christine Frazier at Better Novel Project? Well, I just finished working with someone to create an infographic for it. Take a look below, and holler in the comments to let me know your favorite villain....

Recommended Events – Coming Soon

I just wanted to loop you about a few events I’m really excited about. First, my friends, Larry Brooks and Jennifer Blanchard, are running a 4-day novel development retreat in Portland, Oregon on April 3-7. The event is called Your Story On Steroids, and I believe...

How to Find Your Writing Voice (Without a Single Keystroke)

Some writers aren’t famous for what they write about, but how their writing voices sing on the page. Their cadence elevates them beyond countless wordsmiths vying for attention. Chuck Palahniuk, Anne Rice, and Kurt Vonnegut are a few strong voices that come to mind....

How to Create Characters Before They Live on the Page

This article was originally published as a guest post at my friend Sue Coletta's blog. (Definitely check out her solid debut novel, Marred!) I despise other people’s hands in my mouth. Yet I’ve permitted countless fingers to pry open my jaws over the years. I’ve even...

How FREE is Poisoning the Internet & Killing the Creatives

If you believe in making money and thriving as a creative like I do, then you need to read this raw and real post by the We Are Not Alone (W.A.N.A.) MAMA writer Kristen Lamb... A Culture Addicted to FREE—How FREE is Poisoning the Internet & Killing the...

R.I.P. Story & Craft, but Introducing…

Wait! Please stay subscribed because I'm not shutting down my blog! I'm just switching my domain from StoryandCraft.net to DavidVillalva.com along with updating my email address and logo. Here's the new logo in case you're curious what it looks like:   Of...

Are You Guilty of Hoarding This Valuable Thing?

I married a bone collector. This revelation came to light several months ago when I went looking for a key, opened a drawer and discovered a pile of teeth. It turns out my wife’s been stashing all the pearly whites our kids have lost. Yep, I’m in love with an...

This Is the Worst Writing Mistake I’ve Made That You Must Avoid

I just trunked another draft. Specifically, this was the third draft of my current novel. I loved its first chapter but even it needed to go. A couple friends recently asked if I’m too much of a perfectionist? They asked if I’m judging my writing too harshly? Even my...

The 1st Chapter from My Trunked Draft

I just trunked another 70,000+ words. Those 70K+ words represented the third draft of my current WiP tentatively titled, The Temporal Photographer. Of course, there are reasons and I'll publish them in greater detail in a couple days. Just know for now that it was...

Case Study: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl stays true to the Storytelling Blueprint. See below for a plot structure breakdown... Part 1 1%-26%  -  Status Quo a.k.a. Setup Amy's disappeared & Nick's looked at as a suspect while the characters/setting of N. Carthage, MO are...

Case Study: Killing Floor by Lee Child

Part 1 1%-26%  -  Status Quo a.k.a. Setup Reacher wants to leave Margrave, GA but must prove his innocence in a homicide investigation Part 2 27%-48%  -  Reactivity a.k.a. Caution Reacher follows clues his brother left behind, discovers key info & new deaths in...

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