Talking Shapes: The ‘Thumbnail’

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Synopsis

In this second "talking shapes" essay, Chuck explores a basic paradox of storytelling, while revealing what you can do about it. The Thumbnail opening foreshadows major plot points in advance and creates authority, without giving too much away.

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Comments

Phil Sykora's picture
Phil Sykora is reading Blink by Malcolm Gladwell October 2, 2014 - 2:14pm

To Bradley, I don't think that you avoid the narrator knowing the end of the story just because he's a "different being."  The narrator still knows how the story is going to end.  The present tense offers a whole new dimension to the question, but I don't think the third-person does.

Either way, it's something to think about.

Bradley Sands's picture
Bradley Sands is reading Brian Evenson's Windeye November 13, 2011 - 3:39am

This is a really good point and I've never thought of it before...but I usually write in third person rather than first, so I don't feel like doing this is so necessary considering the "narrator" and the protagonist are two entirely different "beings." Plus I usually write in present tense. So...

But if I ever write in first person and in past tense, it's definitely something that needs to be addressed, although I may never write a book like that.