Plot Skeleton

The Triple O outline provides structure. Every story is about someone who wants something and how they get it. Or not.   Every story plot can easily be broken down into three parts: Objective, Obstacles, Outcome, or what Arlene Chase calls the Triple-O Outline. Don’t worry if your plot is borrowed; there are almost no new ones. The challenge […]


March winds herald spring.  One day, warm zephyrs summon flowers and prompt buds to bloom. The next day, gale-force blowing snaps off stems, sweeps trembling petals on to cold soil.  Plants and trees often man up with admirable perseverance. They adapt. How has what happened affected you? Look back on how you experienced a major change […]


Love as currency tells us what we are worth. The amount of attention we receive helps us connect,  makes us feel good about ourselves. Recognition that  we matter spells who we are. Love finds its opposite in fear.  Open versus closed.  Letting go rather than clenching tightly. Saying ‘yes’, not ‘no’. If we run out of currency, if attention disappears, we feel left out, […]

Winter Holiday Memories

You have recently engaged in a winter holiday.  How might an event over this time period spark your writing?  Draw on the recent vacation or a past vacation to respond to one of the following prompts: make a family winter holiday – Hanukkah, Christmas, ski trip –  your focus. Record the details of the traditional meal […]