Friday, March 11, 2011


DEADLINE, Midnight, March 31, 2011.

 No one has said it too me directly, but I know one of the big weaknesses of The Moral Premise. It's that writers sometimes concentrate too much on the moral meaning of a story and not the story that gets people into the theater... the physical story... the story that begins with the (physical) hook.

What's a hook?  It's the physical idea that makes a story engaging, and hooks both the writer and the audience to want to know what the story is about. A hook is NOT a log line. Here are notes from my writing class, actually the first step of my 8-Step Iterative Writing Process.
1.   A Physical Premise (the Hook) is:
·   Otherworldly
·   Out of the ordinary
·   Intriguing
·   What if?
·   Only one hook per story all else in the story must be normal for the setting.
·   A young man falls in love with a real mermaid.
·   A monster shark attacks a town.
·   A rat can cook better than a man.
·   A lawyer loses his ability to lie for 24-hours.
·   A special type of warrior uses psychokinesis in battle
·   A teenager takes on the Nazis

The Contest Assignment. 

Write a good hook, based on the etymology of the term "GADZOOKS". My students are no eligible. My past and present customers are.

The winner, which I will pick, gets an hour of free story consulting. 

You must post the answer in the com box of this post, and post your real name with the hook. Off line send me your email address. Stan AT moralpremise DOT com


Ryan said...

Stan, does the story have to be specifically about the etymology of "gadzooks," or did you simply mean write a good hook for any kind of story (which would acknowledge the powerful origin of the term)?

Stan Williams said...

Ryan, I want it to be on the term "Gadzooks" because it seems to be a simple and poignant hook, pun, I guess, intended. But it does not have to be particular or specific to the original of "Gadzooks". That is it can be any story, but the hook for the story should harken back to the meaning of "Gadzooks". Sufficiently, confusing. By this time, I'm intrigued.