Fooled by Mr. Keating: Embracing Plot Structure

Previously, I wrote about how I defied rules and structure in my writing in Fooled by Mr. Keating. Some might call this style “post-modern” writing and I certainly had my head entrenched in that school of thought. It was not to my benefit. I think it makes sense to dig a little deeper. Let’s talk about plot structure in fiction writing.

Before we get into it, I want to make clear no potential genre novelist wants to be a post-modern writer.

Why not?

Fooled by Mr. Keating (How I Learned to Love Structured Writing)

The Dead Poets Society is one of my favorite movies of all time. Even as a young kid I remember enjoying it. Robin Williams performance as Mr. Keating electrifies the drama, bringing passion and heart to a story which could have fallen flat. In the movie, Mr. Keating has several iconic scenes which argue against stale, passionless writing, but rather encourages all artists to not be bound by rules or structure. In essence, Keating’s message to his students and to the audience is: Be free.

A Study on Human Behavior

Occasionally, I write movie reviews for a local online website which gets me into early screenings. At these early screenings, marketing companies bring in tons of people who usually win tickets or are signed up to get sporadic tickets inviting them to the show. Most of these people have to just find a seat while movie critics get reserved seats. Yesterday, I went to see The Mummy starring Tom Cruise, and when I got to my row of seats, a couple was sitting down at two reserved seats.

10 Books That Changed My Life

I write for a living. Writing and reading are what I love to do most. So I figured I’d throw down some of the most important books which changed my thinking and shaped the writer and man I am today. There isn’t a doubt in my mind I forgot a book on this list but these are the ones that rose to the top first.

Why I’m an Omni-writer and not a Genre-writer

Many successful (and unsuccessful) authors have to make a choice about what camp they’re going to sit in. Usually, though, that choice is made for them. When an author writes a fantasy book, and it becomes successful, he’ll forever be known as a fantasy author. It would behoove him to keep writing fantasy if he wants more success. These genre authors are usually scoffed at by elitists and pretentious writers. Which, I shouldn’t have to say, is pointless and cruel.

However, when I first began writing, I never intended to be pigeon-holed, come hell or high water. There are writers who love a genre so much they never want to leave. Others, like myself, would rather just be a writer and leave it at that. But most writers start out not wanting to write one genre but are forced into like I mentioned previously.

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