Open your notebook, take out your pen, and welcome a bold new approach to teaching the art of great storytelling. In 27 lessons, drawn from 27 critical moments at the heart of 27 diverse narratives—from plays, novels, movies, television, and even songs and video games—Daniel Joshua Rubin unlocks the secrets of what makes a story work and then teaches us how to understand and use each principle in our own storytelling.
Rubin, an incisive and no BS teacher, writing consultant, and founder of the Story 27 Studio, expands our understanding of narrative by drilling into examples ranging from Hamlet
to The Godfathe
r, Parts I and II
, from Harry Potter
to an episode of South Park
, and unearthing exactly what makes each scene tick. The result is a collection of priceless advice:
, with an example from Pulp Fiction
Write Characters to the Top of Their Intelligence
, from the Eminem song “Stan.”
Explore All Endings
, from HBO’s The Night Of
Attack Your Theme
, from The Brothers Karamazo
Peel the Onion
, from Jhumpa Lahiri’s Interpreter of Maladies
Clash Expectation with Reality
, from Breaking Bad
. After each principle comes a lesson in how to do it, plus a Mini Final Exam and Related Principles from other sources.
Rubin’s writing is the writing we all aspire to: insightful, encouraging, filled with attitude; the examples are relatable, contemporary, and fresh. For writers, storytellers, filmmakers, video game designers, podcasters, writing teachers, and anyone interested in how story works, it’s a guide that turns the traditional writing manual on its head, drawing from a world of diverse voices and sources and media. In other words, from where contemporary storytellers find their inspiration.