In the Spring of 2011, Bob taught a course on Rewriting at Hugo House in Seattle. Hugo House is a sanctuary for writers—poets read there, novelists launch their work there, hungry writers take classes there. Hugo House is a resource like no other in Seattle, maybe in the country. Bob decided to keep a log to track the course and to monitor writers’ progress through their rewriting. The course was designed to work for novel, script, stage play. The techniques Bob used help writers get control of the rewriting process from subplot to character development, from structure to style.
To follow the course, which you can duplicate for your own story, at your own pace, try running the sequence from beginning to end, one entry a day. If you find the process useful, drop us a comment. Good luck, good writing.
Week Four: Key Scenes.
A key scene marks acts, openings, closings, curtains rising and falling, turning points, drama. In the novel and the filmscript, there are seven key scenes: Page One and After, Plot Point One, Midpoint, Plot Point Two, Climax, Ending, and First Encounter. When you rewrite, you lock down the First Encounter first: Lover A meets Lover B; Protag meets Antag; Sleuth meets Killer; Hero meets Monster. Handy tools are scene profile and scene template. Handy structures are scene sandwich and scene sequence.
- Scene Performance.
- Homework that links to Week Five.
- Suggested reading: Two books by Barbara Walker: The Woman’s Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets (Kingship, Knights Templar, Marriage); and The Woman’s Dictionary of Symbols and Sacred Objects (dive in, go deep).