Take the Foster-Harris Survey!

Although I haven’t written anything on Foster-Harris in a while, I see that I’m still getting traffic on his writing system.  If you’re interested in his emotion-based formula for building stories, you can take the survey here.

If you’d like to let others know of this survey, you’ll find the tinyurled link most convenient — it won’t break under cut+paste:

http://tinyurl.com/yev2ha9

Published in: on November 5, 2009 at 8:08 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Emotion + Action Story Formula

This formula combines the Foster-Harris emotional formula with the Lester Dent action formula.  It aims at a story 6,000 words long.  If you’re just tuning in and don’t know about these guys, check out the tags on this blog for the background.

The goal here is to create a story with action and emotional conflict, where the emotional conflict motivates the action, and the action is emotionally significant.

FINDING THE STORY LOGIC

1.) Use the F-H system to design an emotional conflict of interest to you.  We’re using the words “emotion” pretty loosely here; the conflict can be between any two values that get a rise out of people.  For example, the conflict between power and identity.

In general, you want these emotions to be similar to each other, or lay claim to similar domains of activity.  So Love v. Hate is not the way to go.  Love v. Lust is better.  Also popular, according to Foster-Harris, are Pride v. Honor (big with men) and Status v. Love (big with women). (more…)

Published in: on June 26, 2009 at 1:49 pm  Comments (3)  
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Pulp Report – First Story Finished

Last night, I finished The Robot Murders, which I’m posting here.  I have to post it with a password, because part of the experiment is to try to sell it.  If you’d like to read it, write me with “pulp fiction password request” in the subject line. (more…)

Published in: on June 25, 2009 at 1:14 pm  Comments (1)  
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Pulp Report – First Story Progress

I’ve finished the first part of this four-part short story.  The goal is to write a short story according to the F-H system, and in combination with the Doc Savage formula. (more…)

Published in: on June 20, 2009 at 11:17 am  Comments (1)  
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The “Doc Savage” Pulp Story Formula – by Lester Dent

This is a formula, a master plot, for any 6000 word pulp story. It has worked on adventure, detective, western and war-air. It tells exactly where to put everything. It shows definitely just what must happen in each successive thousand words.

No yarn of mine written to the formula has yet failed to sell.

The business of building stories seems not much different from the business of building anything else.

Here’s how it starts:

1. A DIFFERENT MURDER METHOD FOR VILLAIN TO USE
2. A DIFFERENT THING FOR VILLAIN TO BE SEEKING
3. A DIFFERENT LOCALE
4. A MENACE WHICH IS TO HANG LIKE A CLOUD OVER HERO

One of these DIFFERENT things would be nice, two better, three swell. It may help if they are fully in mind before tackling the rest. (more…)

Published in: on June 16, 2009 at 7:32 am  Comments (3)  
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