Action Scenes and Points of No Return


In a world full of shameless self-promoters, what’s more needed than some shameless self-promoting? Well anyway, I have two new episodes up on the Story Punch podcast that I’d like to share with you today. And they are both focused on the same thing: learning how to tell better stories!

Episode 16 – Action Scenes

There’s nothing more thrilling than a great action scene. But there’s also nothing more tedious than a bad action scene. So what can make or break a good piece of storytelling action? In episode 16 I came up with a list of several important things every action scene should try to have:

  • a clear sense of geography
  • a swinging pendulum of who’s winning
  • a clear goal with wider implications
  • vulnerable heroes
  • character-based decisions
  • something never seen before

At the end of the episode, I give some examples of both good action and bad action.

Episode 17 – Point of No Return

In the next episode, I talk about points of no return. Here’s a quick excerpt:

A point of no return puts your story in a place where one character’s decisions will affect things in a big way, for better or worse. Every choice matters, every action has an effect. This is a powerful storytelling tool because it tells us that small actions can have big consequences. One person can make a decision with huge consequences that ripple out and affect everybody around them.

Thanks for indulging me in my little podcast round up. If you have any thoughts about the episodes or requests for future topics, send a comment my way!


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