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Article: Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: The Last Book on Novel Writing You'll Ever Need (Book Notes)

Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: The Last Book on Novel Writing You'll Ever Need - Book Review - Image of Cat wearing Sunglasses

Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: The Last Book on Novel Writing You'll Ever Need (Book Notes)

Save the Cat! Writes a Novel by Jessica Brody is an insightful and practical guide that offers aspiring writers a comprehensive roadmap for crafting compelling and engaging novels. Drawing inspiration from the renowned screenwriting methodology introduced in Blake Snyder's Save the Cat! series, Brody adapts these principles for the world of novel writing. With a focus on structure, character development, and storytelling techniques, this book provides valuable tools for writers seeking to refine their craft and create stories that captivate readers.

Brody introduces the concept of the "Save the Cat! Beat Sheet" (a blueprint that breaks down a story into key structural beats) and elaborates on the 15 beats that make up the Save the Cat! methodology, including the Opening Image, Catalyst, Midpoint, and All Is Lost moments, and guides writers to begin their own story beat sheets to ensure a strong foundation for the narrative.

The author provides an overview of the 10 genres that "fit any story". She then delves deeper into each genre (with a chapter dedicated to each one) with clear explanations and illustrative examples. By breaking down these beats for each genre, and explaining their significance, she empowers writers to navigate the intricacies of plot progression and character arcs, ensuring a cohesive and engaging story. 

Brody also demonstrates how to develop loglines, concepts, and themes that resonate with readers. She emphasizes the importance of analyzing the beats in relation to the overall story, enabling writers to identify areas that require improvement and refinement, and offers guidance on addressing common pitfalls and challenges writers may encounter during the revision phase.

What sets Save the Cat! Writes a Novel apart is its accessibility and applicability to writers of all levels. Brody's friendly and conversational tone makes the book an enjoyable read, while her relatable anecdotes and relatable examples ensure that the concepts presented are easily grasped. Writers can readily implement the Save the Cat! methodology as they plan, write, and revise their novels, making the book an invaluable companion throughout their creative journey.

SUMMARY: Save the Cat! Writes a Novel is an indispensable resource for writers who seek to refine their storytelling skills and create novels that resonate with readers. Jessica Brody's adaptation of the Save the Cat! methodology to the realm of novel writing offers a structured approach that balances creativity with technique. With its practical guidance, illustrative examples, and actionable insights, this book equips writers with the tools they need to craft compelling narratives that adhere to the beats of engaging storytelling.

Get the Book: Digital Book (Apple Books) | Audiobook (Apple Books)