Danger on the Page

A Fiction Writer’s Guide to Sex, Violence, Dead Narrators, and Other Challenges

Brian Shawver

Danger on the Page

Brian Shawver

Distributed for University Press of New England

232 pages | 6 x 9
Although fiction writers must concern themselves with “big picture” issues such as plot, theme, and character development, much of the day-to-day work of writing involves finding answers to seemingly minor questions: How should I describe the exterior of a house? How can I construct the voice of a historical narrator with authenticity? How should I depict a physically atypical character? Few books on the market address the problems and opportunities present in these and other questions, yet they are the ones that most writers grapple with on a daily basis. Danger on the Page: A Fiction Writer’s Guide to Sex, Violence, Dead Narrators, and Other Challenges identifies and explores some of the more common and intractable situational challenges of fiction writing, with chapters grouped into the general subject areas such as scenes, characters, points of view, and settings. Shawver delves into the pitfalls and opportunities of writing about sex, violence, sports, and love; he examines writing from the perspective of a different race, gender, or species; he interrogates conventional beliefs about the use of brand names, the description of architecture, and the portrayal of nature. Throughout, he gives dozens of examples from both literary and commercial fiction so readers can borrow (or reject) other writers’ techniques and explore the myriad challenges of fiction writing on their own. A lively and witty approach to a diverse range of specific writing issues, Shawver’s book will appeal especially to intermediate-level writers seeking to bring their craft to the next level.
Contents
Introduction • PART ONE: SCENES • The Language of Sex • The Imagery of Violence • The Significance of Sports • Love, Endless and Otherwise • PART TWO: CHARACTERS • What Do These People Look Like? Part One • An Interlude on Abnormality • What Do These Peop
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