The Art of Creating Story

Fiction - Literary
700 Pages
Reviewed on 10/07/2020
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite

The Art of Creating Story by William H. Coles answers the question: How do you write a story that people can’t put down? Written by a prolific writer, this book features a series of essays, interviews with industry professionals, and blog posts on the art of writing good fictional stories. The author articulates brilliantly on a variety of topics and shares insights and techniques on successfully handling the key components of a story. Readers will find tips on writing good plot points, character development, setting, and dialogue. The book also covers elements of style and literary techniques and how to go about writing them in a way that they fit seamlessly into the story.

The author brings his experience as a great storyteller into this nonfiction, professional book and puts into the work a system that will make the writing process easy and enjoyable for both new and seasoned writers. The book is packed with information, methodically arranged, and featuring some of the best advice with tested and proven processes from successful writers out there. From concept to creating elaborate and sophisticated characters, from writing dramatic scenes to creating momentum in the story, from connecting with readers through humor to crafting good conflict, the author provides insights and tips that will enrich the writer’s journey. The Art of Creating Story is written in simple language. William H. Coles has decided to go all out and spill his writing secrets to readers. A great tool for any author who is keen on the process and making writing a fun enterprise.

Vincent Dublado

Anyone who is serious about writing fiction should get The Art of Creating Story. William H. Coles has compiled a brilliant collection of essays, advice, interviews, blog posts, and selected short stories that are top-notch references for anyone who dabbles in fiction as an art form. His essays on the craft and elements of story-writing outline compelling principles and applications that serve as roadmaps in avoiding pitfalls that many budding fiction writers make. He reminds his audience that there are no absolutes in writing great fiction stories, but there can be awareness and avoidance of mediocrity. He is equally generous in sharing his conducted interviews with esteemed writers who share their techniques on the craft. His blog posts are downright entertaining and informative supplements to further add to your grasp of how to develop your own literary style.

A great benefit to reading The Art of Creating Story is that it is an excellent crash course on fiction writing. Regardless of your background, if you have ever considered penning a story, William H. Coles will show you the fundamentals and the right way to approach the craft. Literary terms are carefully explained and there is no overblown jargon that intimidates. Another thing that makes this book indispensable is that Mr. Coles makes you set realistic expectations. He does his best to cover everything and, as your writing guide, he will show you the path, but the rest will be up to you. This book is highly recommended for its indispensable how-tos and sincere voice in helping other writers.

Gobi Jane

In The Art of Creating Story, William H. Coles brings together a selection of essays and useful tips on crafting compelling fictional stories. It is a book about the process of creating a winning story and the author discusses the different elements that give literary life to a story, including character, narration, creating drama in the writing, crafting motivation into characters, writing dialogues that will excite readers, and a lot more. Readers will learn the techniques that can help in character creation, beefing up the action, establishing conflict, expertly writing the setting, and creating character-based plots. The book is very comprehensive and includes most of what writers need when it comes to creating good stories — voice, humor, momentum, points of view, and more. The book also features interviews from successful writers such as Robert Olen Butler, Jonathan Dee, Fred Leebron, and many others.

The Art of Creating Story is packed with advice, not only from the author, but from his peers who share their best practices when it comes to finding concepts for their work, researching, and the writing process. Anyone who wants to succeed in writing will find useful tips and advice in this book. Written in a clear, succinct, and fluent style, this book features the basic elements that writers need to create their story and make it one that readers can’t put down. It also features useful blog posts on the writing craft that are well-written and packed with useful information. William H. Coles has created a tool that will practically guide readers on their journey towards success in writing. Packed with tips, technique, and professional advice on the writing craft.

Romuald Dzemo

The Art of Creating Story by William H. Coles is a non-fiction book for writers and anyone interested in writing fiction that sells. In this book, the author shares his writing process from conceiving winning ideas to developing strong plots and characters and writing literary techniques into the story in a way that is flawless and interesting. The book features a series of essays that touch on almost everything about writing, from the important elements of the story like character, desire and motivation, dialogue, plot, and drama to the techniques of the craft when it comes to creating momentum in the story, writing points of view, the voice and time, and literary techniques like humor, and a lot more. There are professional interviews and blog posts on writing included in the collection.

I have read many books from this author, including Spirit of Want and Guardian of Deceit, and have always been fascinated by the storytelling craft and the author’s deft handling of the different elements of the stories, especially the plot, character, and the setting. This non-fiction book puts across to readers the author’s secrets and information from other writers in a style that is clear and accessible. The interviews with authors and publishing professionals are spot-on, filled with advice that will definitely help any struggling writer in their own writing endeavors. This is a good book about how to write good books. The focus is on fiction and the author delivers like an expert in the field. The Art of Creating Story is a book that I’d recommend to any writer and, as an author, I found a lot of insight and wisdom here, with techniques that are handy and effective.

Kimberlee J Benart

The Art of Creating Story by William H. Coles is a collection of almost thirty essays along with transcripts of over twenty interviews with authors, editors, and publishers on the fiction writing process. Nine original short stories provide examples of technique, and an appendix contains thirty-five blog posts on the topic. The essays, interviews, and other content cover every aspect of the storytelling art from the basics of plot, character, drama, and dialog to finer points of voice and style, from the practical to the philosophical, and from the instructive to the soul-searching. Whether you’re a wannabe writer embarking on your first attempt or a seasoned author dripping with medals, there is something valuable here for everyone. Biographies of interviewees and several illustrations are included.

William H. Coles has given us a treasure trove of information, instruction, philosophy, and advice on the art of storytelling. This isn’t a book you simply read from cover to cover and then you’re done. Much as Coles encourages authors to strive for thresholds of excellence in engagement, entertainment, and enlightenment, The Art of Creating Story engages the reader on multiple levels. Some of these are immediately helpful. Others will take time as we discover who we are as storytellers, why we write, and what we want to say. Authors must not only master the ability to write “interesting dramatic prose,” Coles tells us, but “the entangled process of purposeful storytelling.” As helpful as the essays, blog posts, and short stories are in practical terms, I found myself captivated by insights provided in the interviews. An instructive and valuable resource for any fiction writer.