Batesville Herald Tribune, Batesville, Indiana

Local News

July 18, 2014

Author offers advice about writing

BROOKVILLE – About a dozen persons participated in a writing workshop at the Brookville Library July 1.

The three-hour seminar was led by Tricia Fields, author of “The Territory,” “Scratchgravel Road” and “Wrecked.”

She began by saying, “Each one of us comes with our own group of experiences .... I love to write, and I’ve done it as a hobby for years. I got serious about writing about 15 years ago, but it was hard to break into publishing.”

The Liberty resident is married to Todd Fields, an Indiana State Police civil investigator, and they have two daughters.

She points out, “I think if you have the desire to write and the perseverance to practice, you’ll succeed. All you need is your mind, a laptop and a pad of paper.”

Fields reviewed the basic vocabulary used in writing a book and used Freytag’s Pyramid to explain the plot, “the story you’re writing about. You have an inciting moment when the protagonist, the good guy, is identified. There’s the rising action, where you’re just throwing crap at this protagonist. That was the hardest for me.

“If you think about the books you’ve read, the protagonist doesn’t have an easy life, so don’t be afraid to throw things at him or her. The climax is the big event you’re building toward, and then there’s the reversal, falling action, catastrophe and moment of last suspense.

“The setting is the time, place and culture. It’s the background for your story. Some people think of it as another character. It sets up the whole premise behind the book .... (and) is key to whatever type of book you’re going to write about.”

The author had a suggestion about learning how to write well: “Find some really good examples of writers you love and rewrite a page of their books. I can’t tell you how helpful that is.”

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