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GMC: Goal, Motivation and Conflict: The Building Blocks of Good Fiction Hardcover – January 16, 1900

4.8 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 165 pages
  • Publisher: Gryphon Books for Writers (January 16, 1900)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0965437108
  • ISBN-13: 978-0965437103
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #946,625 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Beginning novel writers often need a roadmap to get from chapter one to The End. *Goal, Motivation and Conflict* by Debra Dixon is a practical and insightful manual for writing effective, cogent fiction. She takes you step by step through the writing process using her GMC method. She explains in detail how to create believable characters and events, how to sustain your narrative through multiple plot twists, and how to tie it all up in the end leaving the reader begging for more. Best of all she uses characters and plots from movies such as *The Client*, *The Wizard of Oz*, and *Casablanca.* This book gives you the tools necessary for crafting believable fiction. If that novel you're writing has disintegrated into nothing more than an unruly collection of word clusters, this book is for you. If you haven't started writing your novel yet, this book will save you from pulling your hair out by the roots.
PS. *Goal, Motivation and Conflict* can always be obtained from the publisher, Gryphon Press.
2 Comments 48 of 49 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
This is the only book I know of that deals exclusively with Goals, Motivation and Conflict; three of the most essential elements to writing good fiction. The book is excellent. Ms. Dixon understands what makes a story memorable and she presents her knowledge in a clear, understandable format.

Patricia Lewin, Author of BLIND RUN, OUT OF REACH & OUT OF TIME
Comment 16 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
Especially for the new author, Goal Motivation and Conflict is a concise, practical and easy to understand road map for the writer of commercial fiction. I respectfully disagree with TM Kelly who gave it 2 stars because the book is geared towards commercial and not literary fiction. First that is like being disappointed with a Honda because its not a Cadillac. Second the principles in the book can still be applied to "deeper" fiction. It provides a starting place for the newer writer to build any genre.

The author uses examples from popular movies (something found in many writing books) because almost everyone has seen or can easily obtain them, films are "show" not "tell" mediums, and they clearly illustrate her points. I find the clear, practical guidance of "GMC" a refreshing change from academic, theoretical essays that fill some "how to" writing books.

I have over 70 books on writing in my study, if a friend wanted a recommendation for one book on writing fiction, even deep literary fiction this would be the first one I would recommend. It can be found at the author's web site for $20.00, so no need to pay for high priced used copies any more. I have never met Debra Dixon but I wish I could thank her, this book is a great service to the new and aspiring author.
1 Comment 11 of 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Kindle Edition
I'm a writer. I have an agent and countless rejections by publishers mainly because of GMC. The feedback up to now has been that the GMC wasn't strong enough. My response, "what the F does that mean and what am I doing wrong?" I'll admit I'm not that smart, so I had to read the book twice before the GMC light bulb went off. But I didn't care how many times I had to read it, I got it and Ms. Dixon taught me how important a strong GMC is. Now, I dare to say that if I get published its because of this book. Publishing is too fickle an industry for that. But, I will say now that if publishers do reject me, it won't be because of my books GMC issues. After this read, there simply won't be any.

Thank you, Ms Dixon. You've saved me a lot of time, tears, and frustration.
1 Comment 7 of 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
Like most writers & wannabe writers, I have dozens of how-to books, both paper and electronic.

I've already uploaded a few novellas, but after trying my hand at my first full-length novel, I was disappointed with myself: the story was boring. To me. Which would mean the story would wither on the vine (so to speak) if I decided to release it.

Though I still found the idea a good one, I was searching for something that would better handle the plotting of my novel. I first picked up a short ebook (Rock Your Plot: A Simple System for Plotting Your Novel (Rock Your Writing)) that combines a lot of the stuff I have collected over time. I started with that ebook, which really helped a lot, but I was curious about this one, to see if Debra Dixon could offer more details.

And she did. She gives a number of examples, including using the movie version of The Wizard of Oz. But even though the spreadsheet (supplied by the writer of Rock Your Plot on her website) is well set up to take you from scene to scene - including plot points - this is not set in stone. I've already deviated somewhat from what I originally set up.

So this is a good guide to take you from scene to scene and to make sure that each scene has a goal (what does the protag want to accomplish), a motivation (why does she/he have to do this particular thing), and conflict (what or whom is standing in her way of completing this goal).

If you're having trouble getting with getting your scenes right, this is the book to buy.
2 Comments 5 of 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
Don't get this book from amazon. Visit the author's website, and you can get it for $25.00.
This book is a foundation for stories. It's presented clearly and to the point. It's beneficial for authors who see things in details but can't narrow it down to one central idea. It leads you through a straight path toward resolution.
The author really makes it easy to see the whole picture. Also, by using the chart provided by the author, it helps you create three dimentional characters. If you're a plotter or character driven, this book provides the way to unite both to make a great story.
This book would be a great source for new novelists, but it will also provide a clear way to get things down for mature novelists who are seat of the pants writers.
I'm glad that I read this book. It answered questions I had about goals, motivations, and conflicts--so much talked about by writers.
I read this book twice, and I know that I'll get back to it again.
3 Comments 3 of 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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