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Story Grid Podcast

Helping you become a better writer.Join Shawn Coyne, author of Story Grid and a top editor for 25+ years, and Tim Grahl, struggling writer, as they discuss the ins and outs of what makes a story great.More at www.StoryGrid.com.

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How to Write a Great Love Story

Part 2 on the love story genre. Shawn and Tim dive into the genre conventions, obligatory scenes, and how you can write a great love story.

1hr 2mins

20 Oct 2016

Rank #1

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What is the Theme of your Story?

What is your theme or controlling idea, and how does it help you tell a better story? Tim and Shawn also discuss how to avoid getting caught in analysis-paralysis and how to build your world the right way.


17 Mar 2016

Rank #2

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Editor's 6 Core Questions - Part 1

There are six questions that can guide your writing from the beginning through drafting and editing your manuscript. Shawn walks you through each one.


14 Dec 2017

Rank #3

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NaNoWriMo and Story Grid

Are you doing NaNoWriMo next month? If so, you should be getting ready NOW. Shawn walks you through how to use the Story Grid to prepare for writing an entire novel in one month.


19 Oct 2017

Rank #4

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The Mathematics of Storytelling

Story Grid Math. How many scenes, words, turns does your book need? Also discussed is the 5 commandments of storytelling and Tim's attempt at a rewrite. Click here to read Tim's scene rewrite.

1hr 5mins

2 Dec 2015

Rank #5

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How not to waste 100k words

How does The Martian work with The Story Grid? Plus, we discuss how to make sure your story is good before writing 100k words and the difference between Internal and External genre.

1hr 10mins

11 Nov 2015

Rank #6

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How to Write a Great Scene

Shawn shares about a new project at Story Grid headquarters that will help teach the micro level of storytelling to writers. See more at storygrid.com/ground


16 May 2019

Rank #7

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Breaking Down the Big Idea

What makes a Big Idea book stand apart from the rest? Shawn walks through all of the pieces that go into a Big Idea Nonfiction book that will stand the test of time.


31 Oct 2019

Rank #8

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How to Story Grid a Book

Talking about Story Grid is one thing, putting it into practice is quite another. Tim struggles with applying Story Grid to Harry Potter. In addition, specificity, ins and outs of publishing, and more. Click here to view Tim's Story Grid of Harry Potter.


24 Feb 2016

Rank #9

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Go Back to the Genre

When you get stuck or lost in your story, how do you find your way? Shawn and Tim discuss this as a follow up to last week's episode.


12 Oct 2017

Rank #10

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15 Most Important Scenes

Shawn walks Tim through the 15 most important scenes he has to figure out for his novel.


17 May 2018

Rank #11

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Micro to Macro: Editing Your First Draft

Once you have filled out the Story Grid spreadsheet for your first draft, what do you next? Click here to see the spreadsheet and foolscap as Tim works on it.


18 May 2017

Rank #12

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The Hero's Journey - Archetypes

Shawn and Tim dive into the Hero's Journey as a tool to evaluate the first draft. The Writer's Journey by Christopher Vogler Short version of Vogler's book.


15 Jun 2017

Rank #13

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Character Trumps Plotting

As Shawn and Tim continue discussing the Middle Build and driving the story with characters or plotting. Click here to download Tim's scenes from this episode.

1hr 3mins

9 Feb 2017

Rank #14

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Myths of Publishing

There are a lot of commonly held myths about publishing that often derail writers. Shawn and Tim bring their unique perspective to what writers should know about the publishing world and how it really works.


30 Nov 2017

Rank #15

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Hero's Journey Archetypes - Part 1

The sprint is on to finish The Threshing. This week Shawn and Tim begin working through the Archetypes of the Hero's Journey.


4 Jan 2019

Rank #16

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There are only 6 stories

New research shows there are only 6 stories that every book is based on. Shawn and Tim discuss the implications of this and how it applies to Tim's story. Data Mining Reveals the Six Basic Emotional Arcs of Storytelling Click here to download Tim's Scene Two.


11 Aug 2016

Rank #17

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Creating a Story Grid - Part 1

The next step in editing Tim's first draft is to create a Story Grid Graph. See Tim's Story Grid Spreadsheet here.


29 Jun 2017

Rank #18

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How to Write a Great Villain

What is the nature of evil and how do you make that into an unforgettable villain in your stories? Shawn and Tim dive into this topic.


6 Sep 2018

Rank #19

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Back to the 5 Commandments of Storytelling

You have a scene that's not working, but you can't figure out why. What do you do? Shawn takes Tim back to the 5 Commandments of Storytelling. Click here to read Tim's Scenes 17-20.


5 Jan 2017

Rank #20