Pam McCutcheon aka Pamela Luzier


The Writer's Brainstorming Kit

The Writer's Brainstorming Kit Cover

The Writer's Brainstorming Kit:
Thinking in New Directions
(with Michael Waite)
From Gryphon Books for Writers
(ISBN: 0-9654371-4-0, $24.95)

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The Writer's Brainstorming Kit:

Give your creativity something different and inspiring to play with.  Use the 50 cards and concepts in this book to:

  • Break out of your conventional mode of linear thinking

  • Create conflict in your story

  • Find new and unexpected plot twists

  • Discover character motivation

  • Trigger new associations in your mind

  • Design a story from scratch

  • Add depth to your characters

  • Build your plot

  • Define character goals

  • Break through a block

  • Determine character traits

If you're having trouble locating one of my books, contact:

Author, Author!
5975 N. Academy #206
Colorado Springs, CO  80918
(719) 277-READ

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What others have to say:

The Writer's Brainstorming Kit will join your dictionary and your thesaurus as a must-have tool for the writing trade. 
After the first time, you’ll wonder how you ever wrote without it!” 
— Laura Hayden (aka Laura Kenner), romance novelist

The Writer's Brainstorming Kit seemed like a truly dumb idea, until I started using it.  Now I wouldn’t be without it.  I can’t recommend it highly enough.  Every writer I’ve shared it with wants to steal mine, but I tell them they have to buy their own.  So should you.  It is marvelous.” 
— Carolyn McSparren, award-winning romance author

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Friends and I have used tarot cards in the past to plot a novel or learn more about our characters.  But  reading the esoteric interpretations didn't always help with specific problems of plot and/or character.   So, I decided to make up my own deck and interpretations that would work for me and other writers.  That's how the idea for The Writer's Brainstorming Kit was born.

I asked Michael Waite to work with me on this since his writing style is so different from mine.  It lends the examples some variety, plus he's a great graphic artist--he designed the wonderful cover and all the cards.  Aren't they great?

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     A recurring refrain in the writing business is that editors want fresh material—something different they haven't seen before. We'd all like to oblige them, but sometimes it's difficult to come up with a fully-fleshed, original concept when the only person available to brainstorm with is yourself.
Since we're all limited to one brain, we unfortunately fall into habits of characterization and plotting. Left to ourselves, we develop ruts of linear thinking and tend to respond in the same way to the same conditions (e.g., to the same basic plot lines). To break out of these ruts, we need outside input to trigger our thinking in new directions, to give our creativity something different and inspiring to play with.
     Finding another person or three to share ideas with is one solution, but there are a couple of problems inherent in that. First, others aren't always available when inspiration or the creative urge strikes...and people have a tendency to be a bit peeved if you wake them at odd hours to listen to your latest brainchild.
     Second, others have a tendency to become enamored with their own ideas—whether you find them useful or not—and veer off on unusable tangents. If they're writers, it might become even more difficult as they take fire from their own ideas and spin out complicated scenarios that ignore your needs.
      The ideal situation is to find a better way of brainstorming with yourself. That's what The Writer's Brainstorming Kit is all about—a way of using random concepts to trigger new associations in your mind, to break out of your conventional linear mode of thinking and take flight in new, unexpected directions.
     So, no matter whether you need help with getting started, creating a story from scratch, breaking through a block, adding depth to a character, or finding a new plot twist, shuffle the cards and let them help you create something fresh and different.
     Here’s what it contains:  

Table of Contents




includes five suggestions each for:

CHARACTER:  Role/Pursuit, Traits, Goal, Motivation, Internal Conflict, External Conflict, and Growth/Realization

PLOT:  The Ordinary World, The Trigger Event, The Change of Plans, The Black Moment,  and The Resolution

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Last modified on June 29, 2003