- Series: Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing
- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: University Of Chicago Press; unknown edition (April 15, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0226172546
- ISBN-13: 978-0226172545
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 44 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #353,352 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Dramatic Writer's Companion: Tools to Develop Characters, Cause Scenes, and Build Stories (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing) unknown Edition
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
Read the absorbing new psychological suspense thriller from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Marisha Pessl. Learn more
About the Author
Will Dunne is currently a resident playwright at Chicago Dramatists, where he develops plays and teaches workshops. He also has led over fifteen hundred workshops through his San Francisco program, served as a dramaturg at the O’Neill, and twice attended the Australian National Playwrights Conference as guest instructor. His plays, which include How I Became an Interesting Person and Hotel Desperado, have been presented in Russia, Australia, and Croatia as well as in the U.S.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Like Roy Peter Clark's Writing Tools: 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer, this book has you apply the exercises to your work in progress, rather than to synthetic prompts.
For that reason, this is my go-to book for those moments when nothing is working.
The Dramatic Writer's Companion stands out because of the way it is organized. Many chapters are only a few pages long, and discuss the development of your story or characters out of a particular need you have. For example, take the chapter "Finding the Character's Voice." As in every chapter, Dunne provides a description at the top to let you know what it's about:
FINDING THE CHARACTER'S VOICE
THE QUICK VERSION: Hone and contrast the unique voices of two characters
BEST TIME FOR THIS: Any time you need to know a character better
These "Best time for this" tags are invaluable. Here are some others:
During early story development or any time you add a new character
After you are well into the story
After you have a working sense of the main character
When a character seems like nothing more than an evildoer
During scene planning
In fact, these "best time for this" descriptions are so useful, I hope there will be an index of them in a future edition.
For my writer friends fond of using the Dramatica Theory of Story to build story structure and characterizations, I have found that Dramatica maps easily into these exercises, which provide intense focus on relationship.
I spent a lot of June and July with the Dramatic Writers Companion. The exercises on synopsis helped me write a concise and compelling synopsis for a play that I hadn't even finished, because I understood what the core story was. Fringe wanted our synopses for their programming months before my play revisions were completed, but it turned out fine.
Working out what the play was about in its truest and simplest terms about allowed me to then write the most clear-sighted piece of work I've ever created. Characters developing the themes with more artfulness and purpose than ever before.
The result was that my play received excellent responses from the director, actors, and audience. And it has now been picked up by an established theater company for a full production in 2013.
Thank you, Will Dunne, for writing this book.
I turn to this book often. It is like a wise friend who always asks the right questions to help you define and solve your problem.