Theme Memes: Start With The End

When I conference with writers, they often say they’re having trouble coming up with a satisfying ending. Instead of talking to them about their plot, I ask them to tell me about their intended impact: when their audience reaches the end, what do they want them to be feeling and thinking? Some writers are immediately…

Timeline Cards: for Backstory, Worldbuilding, and Complication

A few weeks ago, I visited one of my Philadelphia Young Playwrights classrooms as a guest teaching artist. The students finished writing scene one of their plays, and it was time for them to outline their full story arcs. It was a perfect moment to introduce timeline as a way to challenge them to think…