Item description for The Power of the Dark Side: Creating Great Villains, Dangerous Situations, & Dramatic Conflict by Pamela Jaye Smith...
Who doesn't love the Dark Side? Darth Vader, Cruella De Vil, Tony Soprano - everybody loves a great villain. And every story needs dramatic conflict - internal and external - to really resonate. This comprehensive, accessible book gives you tools to write the most despicable villains.
Conflict is the very heart and soul of drama, and Smith's latest work explores character conflict and the various ways to portray it both in scripts and on the stage.
Defining the Dark Side helps you select and clarify the worldview that influences your character's actions.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 6" Height: 9" Weight: 0.95 lbs.
Release Date May 1, 2008
Publisher Michael Wiese Productions
ISBN 1932907432 ISBN13 9781932907438
Reviews - What do customers think about The Power of the Dark Side: Creating Great Villains, Dangerous Situations, & Dramatic Conflict?
Unexplained Terms & Too Referential Sep 11, 2008
Not my favorite writing reference ever.
1) The author relies heavily on strings of movie names in support of her points, then fails to explain how those movies demonstrate the point in question. The examples provided are useless unless you have seen the movies in question.
2) The book continually references "chakra" terminology (described as "inner drive / center of motivation"), but nowhere does the author offer an overview of the chakra system for the uninitiated.
3) The book meanders off topic. As often as not, the author is discusses how "good guys" display and/or respond to the "dark side" traits, rather than focusing on how to develop really strong villains that will drive a story forward.
4) Finally, one does wish her writing would be less sloppy. Sentence fragments, misplaced modifiers and other symptoms of lazy writing pepper the entire manuscript, and add to the overall impression that the work was not well planned or edited.
A guide for screenwriters who want to craft a truly memorable and believable villain Aug 14, 2008
A world where everything goes according to plan isn't terribly interesting at all; a good antagonist is essential to a great story. "The Power of the Darkside" is a guide for screenwriters who want to craft a truly memorable and believable villain, someone viewers will talk about as much as they talk about the hero. And a good hero, of course, needs an excellent villain. Sound and wise in its advice on the shadier side of the script, "The Power of the Darkside" is a must for aspiring writers and for community library collections.
Amazingly insightful Jun 13, 2008
As a video game designer, writer and sometimes-actor, I found Inner Drives to be incredibly useful in outlining stories and breathing life into complex protagonists -- and now Ms. Smith has outdone herself. Though stories in general can come in many different forms, for video games almost invariably require an element of darkness, and we must push the boundaries of story-telling to hold the attentions of our audience in an increasingly competitive landscape.
My copy of "The Power of the Dark Side" is now dog-eared, underlined, and scribbled with notes in the margin. I assure you I will be turning back to it time and time again, whenever I need a fresh take on the darker side of humanity. And Ms. Smith's gift of comedic insight makes the learning process exceedingly enjoyable!
The Fascination of Evil Jun 4, 2008
This book is not only fascinating (what could possibly be more riveting than evil?) but is also an invaluable resource for anyone involved in the creative side of the video game business. The ultimate test of a game is that it contains exciting gameplay - gripping challenges for the player to overcome. These challenges are almost always in the form of physical obstacles or living creatures of some sort - human, animal, supernatural or alien life forms. Unfortunately, the physical challenges offered in most games are unimaginative and predictable; and as for the bad guys, they are usually stereotypes we've seen a hundred times before... all too often, anonymous figures firing weapons at us. Pamela Jaye Smith's book is a refreshing antidote to all that -- full of excellent ideas on how to create dramatic obstacles and unique, powerful, fully dimensional antagonists.
Carolyn Handler Miller
Writer and consultant for video games and other forms of interactive media; author of Digital Storytelling: A Creator's Guide to Interactive Entertainment, Second EditionDigital Storytelling, Second Edition: A creator's guide to interactive entertainment (Focal Press)
AN INVALUABLE TOOL FOR DEVELOPING INNER CONFLICT Jun 4, 2008
With insight, clarity and a wealth of great examples, Pamela Jaye Smith gives storytellers both a deep understanding of the power of conflict - particularly inner conflict - to elicit emotion, and an abundance of techniques for harnessing that power to create original, compelling stories, characters and themes.
- Michael Hauge, story and script consultant, author of: Writing Screenplays That Sell; Selling Your Story in 60 Seconds: The Guaranteed Way to Get Your Screenplay or Novel Read; and The Hero's 2 Journeys with Christopher Vogler