Sunday, August 6, 2017

Creating Narrative Tension

Creating Narrative Tension
Instructor Bill Johnson, September 4-29, 2017 – $49

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When a story’s audience is drawn in to feel tension over the course and outcome of a story, that audience will feel a need to experience the relief offered by a story’s resolution and fulfillment. To create this tension, something of interest to a story’s audience has to be set in motion. For example, a storyteller might set in motion an issue revolving around redemption. Because a story’s audience already has feelings and thoughts about redemption and its value, through how a story resolves and fulfills its events, the members of the audience can experience a relief from their own unresolved feelings about redemption, or have their feelings about it validated.

This process of generating narrative tension needs to weave through every aspect of a story to sustain the interest of an audience. A story that lacks narrative tension is un-engaging to its audience.
Instructor Bio:
Bill Johnson is a produced playwright, optioned screenwriter, and has read manuscript submissions for a literary agent. He is the author of A Story is a Promise and The Spirit of Storytelling, a workbook that explores how to create dramatic, engaging stories; and web master of Essays on the Craft of Dramatic Writing, a site that explores principles of storytelling through reviews of popular movies, books and plays (;

Bill has lead workshops on writing around the United States, including the Southern California Writing Conference, Write on the Sound Conference, and the Expo Screenwriting Conference in Los Angeles.

Link to class information and registration at Penn Writers