Author Archives: knlistman

The sports hero’s journey

When advised to base stories on the hero’s journey, I realized that the “monomyth model” constructed plots based on a large sampling of Greek mythology. I’ve always had a suspicion that these myths were based on real people. The characters … Continue reading

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Sports Lit

While watching a recent bone crunching pro-football game on TV, I saw a player dive into a fracas and come up with the fumbled football. He took off for his goal, running for the sidelines to avoid being pummeled by … Continue reading

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Keeping the unknown a mystery

I was engrossed in a mystery that grabbed me from the beginning. Set in the mid nineteenth century it commenced with a spooky chase scene in the fog. The shadow-like suspect disappeared around the corner of a stately brownstone. Then, … Continue reading

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Dueling Detectives

When Edgar Allen Poe published Murders in the Rue Morgue in 1841 the murder mystery was a relatively new genre. He wrote a few more of these increasingly popular detective stories. However, In 1849 he was found wandering injured and … Continue reading

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Getting the Utopian Novel Right

H.G. Wells kept trying to get the utopian novel right. His novel A Modern Utopia has a fictional framework–the protagonist meets a man from a perfect society on a distant island. The book is really a philosophical essay describing the … Continue reading

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Dystopian Entertainment

The plethora of dystopian novels that involve putting teens into deadly trials has begun to disturb me. Starting with Hunger Games, which was similar to a YA version of the Running Man, the stories read like athletic competitions run amok. … Continue reading

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Fairy Tale or Dystopia?

The desire to be considered superior and above the crowd exists in most people. We try to ignore the fact that the majority of us are commoners. From time immemorial stories arise with the promise of reaching status by marrying … Continue reading

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Emotionally intelligent characters?

Readers may seek out stories with a hero with greater than average athletic ability and high intelligence because they are drawn to the larger than life character who is strong or ingenious. However, when a reader asks for a character … Continue reading

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Longing for someplace unfamiliar

In grade school I would skim the readers for something intriguing, passing over  everyday stories of American life that were supposed to draw in readers with their familiarity. I yearned for tales of distant lands, places with unique landscapes, animals … Continue reading

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Critiquing myself

I grew up as a bookworm, constantly reading. My parents sometimes claimed that I spent my entire childhood with my nose in a book. But I didn’t learn how to read until I was five, so books had to have … Continue reading

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