Lisa Cron

Literary Birthday – 14 June – Lisa Cron

Happy Birthday, Lisa Cron, born 14 June.


  1. Story has always affected me in a big way. I wouldn’t be who I am if I hadn’t read A Wrinkle in Time when I was nine.
  2. The bigger the word, the less emotion it conveys.
  3. We think in story. It’s hardwired in our brain. It’s how we make strategic sense of the otherwise overwhelming world around us.
  4. Avoid exclamation points! Really!! Because they’re distracting!! Almost as much as CAPITALISING THINGS!!!
  5. Scenery without subtext is a travelogue.
  6. Make sure that each scene gives us new information, rather than rehashing things we already know. Never tell us the same fact twice. Because it’s boring and stops the flow of the story. Never tell us the same fact twice. Because it’s boring and stops the flow of the story.
  7. Stories are about people who are uncomfortable.
  8. There are two basic motivating factors for just about all human action: Fear and Desire. Almost always, these two are pitted against each other.
  9. The most important element of any story is to make the reader want to know what happens next. Period. Everything else is gravy.
  10. If I ask you to think about something, you can decide not to. But if I make you feel something? Now I have your attention.
  11. Each thing you add to your story is a drop of paint falling into clear water; it spreads through and colours everything.
  12. Story, as it turns out, was crucial to our evolution—more so than opposable thumbs. Opposable thumbs let us hang on; story told us what to hang on to.

Lisa Cron is an American story coach and writer. She is the author of Wired for Story: The Writer’s Guide to Using Brain Science to Hook Readers from the Very First Sentence and Story Genius: How To Use Brain Science to Go Beyond Outlining and Write a Riveting Novel (Before You Waste Three Years Writing 327 Pages that Go Nowhere). She has worked in publishing, as a literary agent, as a producer on shows for Showtime and CourtTV, and as a story consultant for Warner Brothers and the William Morris Agency. Visit her website:

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by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 14th June 2018