Testimonials

Over the past few months I have received a number of laudatory comments as testimonials from readers regarding my poems and articles.

They are posted here in no particular order.

Some of them are collected together by author just because it was easier that way.


testimonials Re: "Love Me Quick" - poem

Love your work... been there on that barstool... Yesssssss, it's all about STORY. Look forward to reading more.

Jan H.


RE: "Memories Rise" - poem

LOVED reading your Memories Rise poem... I feel the swirl. Would know you're a musician from the poem alone. Well Done!

Jan H.


RE: "Tumbleweeds Passed By" - short short story

"As the thudding of the wheels eased to match the beating of our hearts we each stared intently into our own vastness. And felt our tongues working the corners of words that stuck to the roofs of our mouths."

This I REALLY like, Richard. Nice, nice short story.

Charles H.


testimonials RE: "Tumbleweeds Passed By" - short story

An excellent lesson on living. You write as if you've been there. I really like your "human" perspective.

Life can be a tumbleweed's existence. Ever blown by the wind without its own self-determinism. It's freedom is but a guise. True happiness is dreaming and sticking to the dream, unwavering from the goal. Unlike the tumbleweed you must HOLD a position.

Maybe sometimes we must be a hobo Sam to discover our frailties and to garner enough strength to confront living. Sometimes a change of environment makes good therapy.

Sometimes we must be tumbleweeds to know real freedom.

Francis D. testimonials


RE: The Good, Band and Ugly - of the Writing Business - article

USEFUL pushing the business side of artistic endeavor, probably critical.

No sales, no money. No money, no bread. No bread, dead.

Hard to write when yer dead.

Kent D.


testimonials RE: "The Duchess" - long poem

It kept me intrigued throughout...wanting to know the climax, suspecting that The Duchess would somehow in the end prevail, but how? Lovely.

Charles H.


RE: "The Duchess" - long poem

As a lover of all things medieval this poem really struck me as being something out of the ordinary, the whole tale grasped at me drawing me into a time of magic and old beliefs. Truly an inspiring piece.

Phillip R.


testimonials RE: "The Duchess" - long poem

Spellbinding. Riveting. Teeth gnashing. A tale to remember.

Francis D.


testimonials Re: Fallen Photos" - short series of 4 poems

Wow! I feel so honored that my work inspired those poems Richard. Some beautifully written works there. I especially like the final one -"Fallen Photos". It's great how you have captured the very essence of the picture in words.

You are a true poet.

Phillip R.


testimonials RE: "Love Me Quick" - poem

Well Richard, your expertise is set to "high"?

This gave me chills.

Kent D.


testimonials RE: "Love Me Quick" - poem

Your story telling magic works well in poems, too! The way the whole thing comes off gives the poem an endearing quality.

Francis D.


testimonials Re: "It's About the Story" - article

Thank you for your insights.

I've been in a quandary over whether or not to do an on-line course with Gotham and you've just validated the reasons why NOT.

I think I will sigh a breath of relief, and just look for your "front door" and see what lies on the other side.

Francis D.


testimonials RE: "We Need a System - to Succeed" - article

I think you are providing a fabulous service to many writers who are not as accomplished as you are. These quotes above (in the article) I will use as pointers and checklist items in getting works published and well marketed. They are gems.

Charles H.


testimonials Re: "No Reflection" - mood sketch

This is a grand piece of mood and scene, well developed, Richard. I have nothing to compare it with, except a work by a naturalist by the name of William Burroughs around the early 1900's, in a essay called 'Sharp Eyes And Other Papers'.

Charles H.


testimonials Re: "No Reflection" - mood sketch

As if peaking through a keyhole of some space-time lock, I walk with you through a powerful reality reflecting ripples of what if's. :)

S. D.


testimonials Re: "No Reflection" - mood sketch

Why Richard,

I'm delighted to see your Romantic side. To portray the old house as empty, vacant, dusty, even the creeping moss "slowed to stillness by the airless gravity of time" which has undoubtedly lost the life it once knew and can never have again without life's presence.

A great message that illustrates the role of a human being as the giver of beauty and quality of existence.

Francis D.


testimonials RE: "The Epitaph" - poem

I enjoyed reading your work very much.

'The Epitaph' is an exquisite poem.

I won't comment on every single image, but will tell you that this poem is inspiring and invites the reader to meditation. What I like is that you convey the mood and tone of your feelings effortlessly, leaving an indubitable mark in the mind of the reader. The entire poem is a canvas full of beautiful images and emotions. I love its philosophical approach and the liaison between the nature's elements and the sentiments of the human being.

I look forward to reading your next poem.

Lucia


testimonials RE: "Naked to Her Shame" - poem

So far, as I read through your works, I think this is my favorite one.

The rhythm in this poem holds throughout and begs for a second reading (which I did and enjoyed it just as much). So much going on here, the condensity (for lack of the better word which eludes me presently) adds much depth to the work, filled with well-chosen, connotative words. like "for there was no tomorrow, / a giant slayer of her brother and father". Great use of slant rhymes as well.

Good stuff!

Brett-Candace


RE: "What Exactly is a Story - anyway?" - Article

Your explanation of "what is a story" is superb. Unfortunately, I lack a laundry list of literary credentials that could elevate your standing within the literary community by offering up such praise.

But I am a poet of narrative tradition and as an artist I see clearly your diligence and persistence to traverse the jungle of linguistics and false data to discover the open savannah of the simple story.

I am also impressed with your sensitivity to the language and your ability to convey the elements of story in a meaningful and applicable manner: happen, occurrence, incident and event; time, significance, finality people (life) and narration - the 6C of storytelling.

Most endearing, is you have added to my universe as a writer without critique or instruction.

Your exposition, for me, thoroughly elucidates the hat I must wear in order to create a story worthy of being told.

Francis D.


testimonials RE: "What Exactly is a Story - anyway?" - Article

I just wanted to add a cognition that I had on "what is a story".

The "irreducible minimum" that you put forth, actually brings a conceptual understanding to "story": a complete concept. And that's what makes it workable for me!!

Francis D.


testimonials Re: "Planet Earth - Now Hiring" - Article

I commend you for putting forth a rational solution which if applied would remedy for all mankind the sufferings which are now part and parcel of daily life on our planet.

Francis D.


testimonials The "Good, Bad and Ugly - of the Publishing Business" - article

I read this article for discussion carefully, Richard. Very coherent, and easy to follow.

Charles H.


testimonials RE: "The Good, Bad and Ugly - of the Publishing Business" - article

What you have said here about the current state of the publishing business and the writer's relationship - or lack thereof - is absolutely true.

Thanks again for your diligent work. I'm with you. We must gain greater knowledge of our craft to work from a position of responsibility for as writers and thus control our futures.

Francis D.


testimonials RE: "Flowers for Mothers Day" - Is this "Poetry" or something else?

First, Richard, thank you for the energy and time you put to words to respond to my thought-provoking question.

I'm beginning to feel like you should send me a bill for your services.

Through your thoughtful response, I have been able to spot my dependency upon the vestiges of my suppressive literary "training". I have for some time been freed of its grammar rules and squirrel trap. I had not looked to see this other of which we have discussed, and all the while it has been surreptitiously doing me in.

You have with considerable gentleness and understanding helped me to see where I need to take more responsibility in my own learning and education as a writer.

Thanks for helping me to see this "mumbo-jumbo" and I promise to write on.

Francis D.


testimonials RE: "Flowers for Mothers Day" - Is this "Poetry" or something else?

This was quite a cognition for me and has had marvelous repercussions. God only knows how long it would taken for me to spot this "mumbo-jumbo" which I've had hanging around. You helped me spot it for what it is and blow it away. I have even experienced a closer connection and more spontaneity with my writing these last several days.

Again, thanks very much.

Francis D.


testimonials Re: "Fallen Photos" - poem

My vote is for "Fallen Photos. I like the progression of the piece from beginning to end. It's so easy to see oneself sitting at some time or the other with an album in hand. And then you just let it rip from there.

Great emotion. I loved it.

Francis D.


testimonials Re: The Heartbeat of Man is Failing" - article

Hi Richard. Some very interesting and truthful points you put forward there.

Phillip R.


Re: The Heartbeat of Man is Failing" - article

You're totally correct we do write too slow...

Phillip R.


testimonials Re: The Heartbeat of Man is Failing" - article

So, Richard, what you're saying in a nutshell is that we need to knock-off the dilettantism and become professionals?

You said: "...reach out, grab the curtain of self-doubt, false data and bad definitions and give it a yank." And I believe you.

I began applying your data on "What Is A Story" and magically my writing started flowing much easier. And I've finished 7 poems in a week. I've never done that before. And I'm absolutely positive that it was from exposing a glob of false data that you helped me see from your explanation of a story and follow up communication.

The whole idea of following Function to Design to Plan would seem workable to me, though I must admit to being one of those who entreat the muse. I understand how form follows function in other ways, but never thought that relationship could apply to writing - storytelling. This is exciting. Very exciting!

You make me feel as though I've just left church, resigned to never sin again or something. "Resurrect the storyteller, and restore him/her to their rightful and necessary position as the heartbeat of mankind and guardian of the civilization."

For me, I have the urge to say things and I see so many things needing to be said. And I don't say that egotistically, but I agree with you that we are dying, things are going south and while my heart still ticks, it is weak and slow. And apprehensive.

"It is the writers who put the words into the mouths, onto the screens and into the minds of man." What you say makes the storyteller more powerful than the Pope!

Absolutely earth shaking.

Francis D.


testimonials RE: AFWB Annual Meeting

It was great meeting you at the AFABW party. I was highly interested in what you were discussing since I have such a high affinity for words, too, and you artfully articulated some vital concepts that were innately true to me, but that I had not heard expressed before. You have some important stuff to bring to the world of writers and I'll buy any books you publish on the subject!

George A.

President

Artist For A Better World


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" - student

This is an eye opener, I realize that I haven't really thought about what the core message and morale of my project is, after all the story comes to me and flows out of my mind like a river when I write. I think for the first time I have seen a glimpse of the road to a finished product, and I'm looking forward to the challenge.

I can't remember the last time I had this much fun learning.

------------------ testimonials Just finished reading lesson 4.

And you're right. My mind is racing. To avoid a crash I'll have to spend a day or two tossing it around in my mind and reading it a few more times.

I did get a lot of it, I was quite dumbfounded by the simplicity of it all. At the same time as being complex, at the core it's plain and simple. Astonishing.

I hope you are having as much fun teaching me as I have learning!

--------------- testimonials This is really getting to me you know. I keep getting flashes of "enlightenment" while working with your lessons, after which I'm sitting here thinking "What took me so long? this is easy!"

I have to say this lesson was an odd, yet exciting, intellectual experience. I was struggling with it, i really was, but then about 20 minutes ago something switched in my mind. Kind of like switching on the light... It was truly an "OOOHHhhh that's what it means...." experience.

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That revised lesson really cleared up my view of an event. Previously i had the opinion that everything was an event or in some way connected to an even with my "minute events" and all that, but now i can differentiate between happenings, occurrences, incidents and event. It really cleared things up and gave me a broader appreciation of the term "Story". This is really exciting.

------------------- testimonials Oh I am, without a doubt, getting as much out of this as you are. I have never had this much fun learning, and I think either you are the best teacher I have encountered, or I have a knack for this. Since we started I've had more A-HA experiences than I did while studying business at an expensive private school with supposedly the best teachers here in Norway. This is the best thing that's happened to me since I decided to become a writer.

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Oh, I got a new dictionary, a Webster's Advanced Learner Dictionary (don't have it in front of me so cant tell you what edition, only that its the newest). And I looked up their definition of story... it was just confusing, their definition was complicated, I'll copy it and send it to you some other time, if anything it will give you a laugh.

------------------ testimonials This exercise was quite rewarding, it made me revise the lessons and focus what I was reading on productivity AND understanding, not JUST understanding, if that makes sense.

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You did mention that you wondered if I know how far I've come, to answer that: No I don't, I feel as if I'm scratching frost off a window and having a peak inside, if you know what I mean.

I have gone through a lot since we started, had A LOT of A-HAs and gained a new perspective on a lot of things. I'm getting a broader perspective on everything, from a sunset to a book, to a movie to a piece of art. In other words, I'm having the time of my life learning some really cool and interesting things.

Furthermore I would like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to learn from you, the things you are teaching me are genius, and I believe it would have taking me years, if not decades to learn it on my own.

--------------------------- testimonials Working on this twisted and turned my mind and I won't say I had an A-HA experience during the process but it actually gave me a better view of what a premise is. Quite enjoyed this exercise.

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... the only thing I feel is gratitude towards you, and I feel honored and lucky to have come into contact with you. You are teaching me things that help change my life and things I would spend decades unraveling on my own, if I ever found out on my own.

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I tried to use what I have learned from you to try and find the premise of this story. I twisted and turned and tossed and bounced and stretched and crumbled the story in my mind, and at the end, after finishing the last book, I realized the premise was “Love conquers even death”! One of the things that is special about the main character is that he chose immortality, (he was given the choice, and chose immortality to save his girlfriend in the first book, but I was so sidetracked by the dark and mysterious aspects of this book series that the pieces didn’t fall in place until after the third book), and another thing that also hit me upon completion of the series was that every time he died, and every time he came back and all his choices was based on Love. So, I would like to thank you for enabling me to play with this book series as I did. It was a good experience! I also realized that while reading I was focusing on “what do these choices mean? Where does it lead?” instead I should have asked “Why does he make these choices, what motivates him?”

Kris M. - Oslo, Norway


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" - seminar follow-up material

Your idea is very creative and innovative.

I'm writer / director (my specialty is a field of documentary films).

I'm particularly interested in your proposition to apply your lessons on documentary genre because I think that the documentary authors often neglect the importance of storytelling in theirs films.

--------------- testimonials I would like to thank you for sharing your knowledge and to congratulate for your generosity and courage to present me your work in progress.

As you could see my English is a little bit "gauche" and I apologize for possible faults and imprecision. My native languages are Serbian-Croatian and French.

In this phase of your "lessons" I find your methodology very helpful for two purposes:

- 1. obviously, in my first approach to organize the structure of some feature film projects. - 2. to write the proposition for my documentary project "xxxxxxxxxx"

------------- testimonials Here I would like you present how your gradual model of the steps to identify the plan and scenes to write helps me in writing a documentary proposition and brings clarity in vision how the story of my documentary could evolve in spite of all unpredictable incidents which could occur.

• Premise • Log line • Elevator Pitch or just Pitch • Synopsis • Outline

The efforts to find and to write all this elements give me more accurate responses about what is my documentary.

Goran N.


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" - seminar follow-up material

I came back from (a seminar) and I'm starting to work on your "lessons". Man, the 01 I just read is the exact thing I found out in the seminar with Joyce! I was very curious about the Valuable Final Product you would come up, and this is exactly the same thing! So, I got the message and surely clarified and put words on what I did in the past and I'm currently doing.

RVé

------------ testimonials I just read the 02 lesson. I think I got it, but I guess I have to work it over and over again as I have to grasp the subtleties of English words. For example, I never wondered what was the difference between "happen" and "occur". And in the dictionary I use (MSN Encarta) they put occur in the happen definition, and happen in the occur definition. I'll try to bridge the gap between English words and French words - what's the French equivalent for occur and happen.

---------- testimonials I finished the 03. You're totally right when you say we have to have a story to tell before we write it. And I'm going to do little homework here: just pick-up all the "stories" I started to write and did not finish yet and just wonder what is the story about.

French writer here in Québec

Herve D. - Québec, Canada


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

Oh, wow! You can imagine how much joy and relief I have by receiving your e-mail.

I'm a filmmaker. My mother tongue is Castilian, but I think with no accent. I have being awarded in film school for an original screenplay. In 2002 at the Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival I was selected as one of the best screenplay writers.

I started going to seminars and classes for screenplay writers at UCLA, USC, AFI, etc. because I wanted to get better at my craft. However, I just got into trouble by falling into the pitfalls that are described in the article "10 Ways to Drive a Writer Crazy." I was so good that I missed very few of those ways.

I need help.

ISHMAEL A.


testimonials Artists For a Better World Keep those articles coming, Richard!

Jan H.


testimonials Great! This really made my day. I still think about your Western story every once in a while.

Becky M.

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RE: The Curse of Creativity - article

Very thought-provoking. In reading it, I realized how much I miss your essay's.

Becky M. testimonials ------------------

AFABW Editor

I don't know what the next theme will be yet, but your stories are great so no doubt one would be chosen.

Becky M.

---------------- testimonials (By the way, I was inspired to write my "Heroes" story after you read your chapter at CAFE about a man in the barn with his horse. Or some such thing you read where you weren't nicey, nicey, sweetness and light. I realized from what you read that in order to get an emotional impact of any size, you have to get dire, down and dirty so the upside is so much sweeter.)

Becky M.

I'm going to Denver tomorrow. I've printed out your stuff to read on the plane.

Becky M. testimonials --------------- Please email me any of the lessons I have not yet received. I like your definition of an event. I believe this to be true.

Becky M.


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

Hi Richard, thanks for allowing us to get your material. I attended the seminar, and I thought it was fantastic.

You didn't quite have me at the beginning, as someone that communicates to me in basic terms makes me wonder if they think I don't know these things, and I wonder if they're going to eventually offer something of value.

But early on I realized that you were making a point about the evolution of writing, and your style was to drive home the idea that writing, as an art form, can be learned and that it's a process of building upon basics.

You forever have now tied the word "storyteller" and the concept of writing together; advancing from the most basic of the earliest entertainment. I totally got your analogies, and I'd be privileged to receive your info.

Thanks for coming to the writer's meeting and sharing your tech!

Brian L.


testimonials Re: Discussion of the "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" -

Thank you so much for sharing your ideas with me on this topic. It sounds like something you're really passionate about.

Passionate people can interest me in almost anything. I admit that I've never been interested in fiction for fiction's sake. I don't like to read it, for example. But I admire it because it is the most powerful way to say something.

Stories speak to people's hearts, as we talked about. That's why Ayn Rand is more popular that Aristotle” she wrote novels, not treatises.

I think I'm somewhat intimidated by the story, because it's such a blank slate, and I don't know where to start. It's never something I've taken an active interest in, but I think stories are essential to express ideas, which is something that does interest me.

I read all of the works you sent me, and I was very intrigued. I especially liked "Flowers for Mother's Day". Perhaps because it wasn't heavy handed - It was very simple and meaningful.

"The Duchess" was quite interesting as well.

Thank you again,

Brighid


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

That was great! I liked it very much.

It is low-gradient... but that's okay.

It's funny because that IS the way I looked at it... I hadn't formulated it officially in my mind... exactly. So it's good to actually name it.. take it out and identify it, you know?

So, this is great! You dissected it and nailed it.

Sure, we all want our work published... we would like to reap the benefits financially... of course! But it's soooo true that the real product is the effect you create. And, my God, when I write a story and the reader LOVES it and gives me feedback... like when my sister-in-law told me that after page 56 she didn't even get up to go pee, well, I knew that was the exact product I wanted. Gosh, I get so warm and fuzzy! That effect is EVERYTHING! And when they bug me for the sequel - there is no better feeling, I tell ya.

See, I just wrote an "essay" (practical) on your lesson, an example of your lesson that I experienced in life.

Cecilia testimonials -----------------------

I really like what you've done.... man, you've really given this thought and broken it down.

Cecilia

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OMG I need a differentiation-ary!

Oh! LOVE what you've written about Acts I II and III... good data!

Good on the derivation of novel... liked it!

06-Mockups... so far, freakin' LOVING this!!!! Oh, yeah, baby!! I really like this. It totally spoke to me. YES! We need to do it so well that the words disappear.

Story Design Backwards - I loved this one! Yeah, I do that. I know that I want this particular thing to come about so that I work it backwards. This is one of those things that it's good that you pointed out what I'm doing, labeled it and put it on paper so I can spot it and keep doing it.

Cecilia testimonials ---------------- Re: "Vinegaroon" - Historical Novel

... you are a TERRIFIC writer. I really mean it.

I can technically communicate a story well and s/times I'll come up with a word combo that's clever, but mostly I'm not particularly gifted (yet). I know this. But I'm smart enough and have a good enough story concept that I can usually work around it.

But you have such a nice way of putting those words together so they flow beautifully. And the whole package is terrific and different (you know, you don't have a bunch of cliche shit in there).

It was so good that I was interested despite the fact that it's just not my genre.

Again, I am really super impressed with your writing!!!!!!!

Cecilia testimonials -----------------

I keep thinking about your story and how beautifully written it is. And the more I think about it, the more I want to get into it...

Cecilia


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

I've been reading your stuff with much interest.

CHARLIE testimonials --------------

1) Your first comments resonated with me. They used to call this aesthetic experience "inspirted by the muse" or "ecstasy" (Greek "to stand outside"). And yes, there is an ecstasy...

CHARLIE


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

By the by, as hard as it was to agree with your viewpoint that to refer to ourselves as either "poets" or "writers" was clouding over who and what we really are and do. I see that unless one grasps the role as as "storyteller" and his purpose to tell a meaningful story, he lacks the complete concept and only fog can result.

The true tradition of poetry lies in telling a story. All the rest I see as a gradual spiral downward marked by greater and greater complexity with utter failure to be duplicated and understood. Little reason why poetry books don't sell.

I am eternally grateful for your passion and care in helping to keep our hearts alive and beating.

Don D. ------------ testimonials Thank you for the wonderful data.

Your "Keeping Literature Working" is remarkable. How did you ever think of that?

The idea of 'teaching a technology before being able to master it' blew me away.

That explains the system of apprenticeship and mentoring fully.

Why it was so successful and how we can again regain our level of craft, not only in literature, but all areas.

Teaching is just as important to the Master as it is to the student. I get goose bumps thinking about this. IT"S SO BEAUTIFUL!! testimonials We're so use today to accepting the degradation state of teaching and we look on the field with more and more disdain. I grew up with a more respectful viewpoint of teaching only to watch it dissipate into contempt and to begin to feel that outside of an Academy there was nothing worth learning. It's simply a matter of keeping in Steps 1-10 (of Keeping Literature Working).

Communicating the mock-up is something I have been skirting around, sort of doing, but not fully having the concept. You've just handled that for me, too.

I can recall writing certain poems directly from my illusions (mock-ups) to raves from my visual artist friends. I had thought the reason for such response was "painting" the images. How dumb! It was the mock-ups which actually communicated!! testimonials I understand your personal interest in disseminating your understandings, but you, my friend, shall reap much greater dividends than imagined for all that your efforts will bring to so many.

You wear your hat as a writer well. I admire you as a storyteller, but I admire you as a being even more.

Don


Re: "Flowers for Mothers Day" - poem testimonials Liked the Mother’s Day flower poem. Thanks for sending.

Jody

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Re: "No Reflection" - poem

Enjoyed the images. Nice interlude.

Jody testimonials ----------

RE: "Tumbleweeds Passed By" - poem

Nice. Thanks for sending.

Jody


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

My name is John C. I attended Columbia College in Chicago and graduated with a degree in Arts. My major while there was film-making, and I do not use that title lightly.

I studied it all: Cinematography, Lighting, Directing, Producing, Assistant Directing and 'some' writing.

It wasn't until I left school that I started writing and studying the craft of writing. I read hundreds of book, also attend several seminars. It got so bad that I had to promise myself that I would purchase no more books on the subject and not attend another seminar. At one point I was also watching at least 4 movies a weekend.

Re: Seminar

A lot of things you said last night really registered.

---------- testimonials I can't say enough on how great of a thing you have done by compiling this information and sharing it with others like me.

Thank you kindly,

John C.

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I'm a bit anxious to continue our agreement. I've searched for the knowledge that you have complied for many years and now that it is within my reach I want to continue without any delay.

Please send part two of the "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" notes.

John C. testimonials ------------------

It's going much, much better. Thanks a lot. Your notes have really help clear up the story that I'm telling. I have a much greater understanding of what I'm conveying to the audience. I'm working now on committing to a schedule every single day,...

John C.

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RE: "Tumbleweeds Pass By" - poem

I like it. You paint beautiful pictures with your words and I feel like I really know the characters. I like stories about boxcar traveling. Thanks for sharing.

John C. testimonials -------------

Keep your emails coming. I'm really learning a lot from them and I think that it is great that you have decided to share your wealth of knowledge among the writing community.

I'm working on a new script. It's a comedy. The last time I attempted to write one was over eight years ago and I was disappointed with the outcome.

John C. testimonials ----------------

I got some good news!!!

Both of my specs (Xxx Xxxxxx and Xxxxx Xx) made it to the Quarterfinals for the One Hour category in the Scriptxxxxxxxx International Television writing competition.

John C.


testimonials Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" - student -

Your words ring true to me. Point of view can mean a great deal in any walk of life, if one is capable of competently applying it. The idea that something will be difficult is the reason, more often than not, as to why it is difficult. If one were to look upon something as a learning experience, and a way to increase survival potential, then something would tend to lean more toward fun than work.

I am happy that you are willing to help me progress onward toward success as an artist, and as a person with goals. I gladly accept your offer.

Upon examining your offer, it looks to me like the best way toward achieving my goal of being a writer.

By accepting your help to alloy my efforts, I believe I will be able to achieve my goal.

Trying to find my way in the dark is only going to earn me a merit badge for getting lost

K

testimonials ----------

It isn't every day that I get an insight into life. I am happy that you are willing to share with me data such as this.

I have come to the conclusion - after 18 years of life - that there are several different types of data. Among them, usable and unusable data.

The insights which make a difference - such as what you have told me - I would classify as usable. The sort of stuff that really contains the essence of life.

K

testimonials -------------------

There have not been any other people in my life that could actually offer me real help with my writing. Everybody either criticized it, said they liked it, or gave no input at all. You have been the first and only person that could help me in this, and I am grateful that you have been willing - and patient - about everything.

K


RE: article "Natural Talent" - article

I think your point here is valid. It is similar to what Larry Gluck says in his book, "The Talent Myth". Responses to compliments are the least of the problems.

Natural talents don't intellectually know what they're doing right, so when it doesn't go so well, they don't know what they're doing wrong, and they curse the Muses for abandoning them.

It's an emotional roller-coaster.

LM


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material - testimonials I like your system for creating the story to be told.

It gives a nice, systematic series of steps one can take to create a story.

I can already recognize increased workability and speed of production in using this system.

I can recognize where I have gone wrong in the past too - I didn't work out a premise, but rather started with an "idea" of a character and a scenario, not any meaning or significance or "premise" to the story.

My stories I've thought up so far have lacked a distinct and agreeable point. They have been fun and entertaining, but without a definite, explicit point that I could then align everything else too.

Thus, I would get stuck later on as I would have too many choices, and no central, stable datum to align my choices of characters, incidents, scenes too. I would lose direction.

Michael C. testimonials -----------------

I have gone over your last 2 emails and I cannot agree with you more.

I think a Story Engine, with a logical progression and gradient scale of Story Design is a tool every writer can use.

I think many stories fail due to a lack of alignment of the premise through to outline.

I had a feeling, when I first started reading about your 'scale of Story Design' that it could be worked up and down starting from any point and simply working out and completing the blanks.

I am quite sure this will be highly beneficial. I think every writer would gain from using a system like this. testimonials Michael C.


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

I really enjoyed your seminar. Lots of great insight and new perspectives dawning. I would very much be interested in reading your materials -- and especially any additional information on outline structure.

Michael M.

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I’ve been working professionally as a writer for 30 years - animation and live action TV and features.

Michael M.

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Thanks for the clarification on how to apply the materials. It all makes perfect sense.

Michael M.


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

The two pages made me eager to open the "Front Door".

Paul H.

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The "product" is what I was looking for, Richard. It was good--clear, made sense.


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

I like your definition of an event. I believe this to be true.

Regina T.

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It's the artist who adds meaning or describes "isness," like a beautiful sunset.

It's a profound statement "we are the ones who add meaning to life."

Regina T.

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I need to study this chapter more.

There is lots of serious material to comprehend before I can proceed, as you had forewarned.

Regina T.

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Great to be in the right place at the right time.

Looking forward to using the drills and producing written work/s in 2009, with your guidance and the use of your techniques and "secret codes."

Regina T.

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I will review Lessons 1 through 4C again to be able to complete this drill.

It's pretty comprehensive and excellent exercise for the rubber to meet the road.

Yes, it will take me some time to do the drill.

Thanks, Teacher.

Regina T.


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

I had a good time at your talk last night at Hollywood Professional Writers Society.

I was the gentleman sitting in the very first row. The advertisement of "breaking the code" really grabbed me. For quite a long time I have always wished to write but was too intimidated to give it a try. I always thought writing was what other people knew how to do and I didn't. Too complex, too many rules to follow, etc.

I felt your talk was very inspiring and stripped away a lot of false info out there depicting this field as something very esoteric and not for the Joe on the street. I see this is a lie.

While I would not consider myself a literary gymnast. I would say my writing style aspires to be from the Gordon Ramsay style of cooking. A simple menu with the freshest ingredients. Basically, the best meatball sub you've ever had.

I would have loved to stay to personally thank you.

Unfortunately, I had to be up very early the next day for work and needed to get home.

Question for you Richard - My burning desire lies in creating, writing and producing cartoon shows (usually 30 minutes) and comic books.

I found your data to be broadly applicable to all types of writing.

Do you have any specific tips, sources or anything else that could help me on this? The only reason I ask is what little I know of writing (i.e., Act I, II & II for a feature film script) I know even less about a 22 minute cartoon. I really wish to get started here. I'm tired of being tortured by great ideas and not knowing how to express them or even what to do once I have the damn thing.

Rob


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar follow-up material -

Excellent work. You're having a "Premise File" really got me to drooling...

I may be wrong, since I've just started looking, but many TV Shows seem to be lacking the communication of a universal truth. I do know I need a lot of work in this area, so thank you for pointing it out...

The funny thing is I don't think it is weird at all starting a NEW Career at age 60 - especially when there's such expert and deeply thought out guidance available. Thank you, Richard.

Robert F.


Re: "Cracking the Master Storytellers Code" seminar -

I appreciate your sharing your thought and experience with me and that they are directly addressing questions and areas that I am confronted with.

This seminar helped isolate and identify the areas of confusion that I have been trying to sort out.

It gave me more understanding of the area and I definitely would like to look at your written research to learn more about what you are communicating.

I felt like your stage presence was excellent and the presentation valuable.

In short I am very glad that I attended and I would like to receive the written works on the "Master Storytellers Code"

Bob H.


RE: "Fallen Photos" - poem

I liked all your poems especially # 3 and # 4.

The lady with the photographs was moving.

Russell S.


RE: "Flowers for Mother's Day" - poem

Read Flowers for Mother's Day. Beautiful! Congrats.

Shelley F.


RE: "55 Chevy"

Nice work. Makes me want to take my Impala for a ride!

Steve F.

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RE: "The Epitaph" - poem

"The Epitaph" is moving.

Steve F.


Re: "Flowers for Mothers Day", "The Train", "Sandals", "The Epitaph" and others.

The poems are lovely, Richard. I enjoyed reading them.

Good on keeping me posted.

Tanii C.


RE: "We Need a System - To Succeed" - article

Just read both the SYSTEMS and NATURAL TALENT, too bad I didn't join this circle sooner - I would have not wasted my time with Self-Publishing my first book...lesson learned for jumping the gun...the book will be two years old come this November and only made me about twenty four dollars.

I'm out six grand and still have no way of knowing if the book is really selling or not.

Your 'Systems' makes more sense than any other books I have read on the same subject and I have learned more of what I really needed to know and I thank you for sending it my way.....

Mary A.

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RE: "Six Degrees of Separation" - Article

Just a quick note to let you know that, I enjoy reading what you are submitting; I find the info very informative.

Mary A.

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Re: "Natural Talent" - Article

Richard...I can relate to your statement...It applies to me.

>>The more "natural talent" an artist was "born with" and the less training they have had in the correct technology in their craft the more vulnerable they are to outside criticism and self doubt.<<

Mary A.



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