Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Book Review: Shoot Your Novel: Cinematic Techniques to Supercharge Your Writing

I gotta admit, I really liked this book. It took about two hours to read, but the payoff should be huge.

Here's the main takeaway for writers: approach your writing like a cinematographer. Plan every scene in your book and choose a camera angle (perspective) to tell your story from. 

The author explains some different camera shots directors use, then goes on to explain how and when to use them. She also provides numerous examples of the camera angles as used in books and movies.

By knowing the key moment and how your plot builds it, you can plan the camera angles to best enhance the visual experience and evoke the strongest emotional reaction from your reader.

 The idea behind the book makes sense. If writers want to be successful, they should study Hollywood blockbusters. Good movies don't just happen. They're planned. They're edited to show exactly what the director wants viewers to see. 

I don't want to give away the farm, so I'm only going to discuss a few camera shots.

One of these is the establishing shot. It occurs at the beginning of the movie, and when you are switching scenes. It establishes the locale or gives viewers (readers) a frame of reference for the new scene. The establishing scene can be very brief, or it can take several minutes. It is important because it gives readers a context for what is going to happen. If you leave the establishing scene out, you risk confusing your readers.

Another important scene is the close-up. In the author's words...

...small close-up details can help make the scene come alive. Sensory details (touch, taste, sounds, sights, smells) are the most effective ways to make a scene come alive in the reader's mind.

If you want to do just one thing to help draw readers into your story, focus on adding several sensory loaded close-up scenes. If you're not sure how to do it, download some erotica stories. These authors understand the art of close-up, and how to involve your senses.

The final chapters help tie everything together, showing how to use the different camera angles in your writing.

If you want to bring your books to life - buy this book. Highlight it. Read it often. Practice telling your story using different camera angles.

Well worth the investment.


  1. Wonderful post and i also read some page of this book and its writing skill is very fine and good poems and stories thanks for share it rephrase a sentence .


  2. I like your all post. You have done really good work. Thank you for the information you provide, it helped me a lot. I hope to have many more entries or so from you.
    Very interesting blog.