An Update from our Third Stone Soup Book Club meeting!
On Wednesday, April 29th, we were lucky enough to be joined by author, Nicole Helget, as we continued to discuss her book, The End of the Wild. Participants offered a range of penetrating questions that opened our discussion to everything from Nicole’s inspiration for the book and particular characters, to suggestions for approaching the craft of wiring fiction, to practical tips for tackling writer’s block!
We all learned so much. Among those suggestions that stand out most clearly in my mind, Nicole shared that she believes each chapter in a work of fiction should always start with setting–even if only briefly. Otherwise, as she explained, the story unfolds in blackness for the reader, with no movie reel running in their imagination as they read. Before beginning, Nicole advised, you should develop your main character and determine how many companion characters will accompany them on their journey throughout the story. Your core mission, as a writer, is to decide on what it is your main character wants that they don’t have and let this drive your plot. Finally, don’t be afraid to edit! As Nicole advised, whatever doesn’t serve your story, no matter how attached to the writing you might be, must go.
It was a fascinating and informative session and we’re so grateful to Nicole for joining us.
The Participants: Anya, Abhi, Allegra, Arianna, Chloe, Djin, Enni, Ever, Georgia, Joanna, Lena, Lucy, Michaela, Penelope, Rachel, Raeha, Simar, Sophia, Tristan.
The Stone Soup Book Club is open to all Stone Soup contributors and subscribers, age 9-13, during the COVID-19-related school closures and shelter-in-place arrangements. We meet every Wednesday at 1:00 p.m. PST for one hour via Zoom to discuss our chosen book.
Next week, we will begin discussing our 2nd book:
The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or the Three Magical Children and their Holy Dog, by Adam Gidwitz.
Hope to see you all there!