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  • Writer's pictureSajeev Varghese

Storytellers: Masters of the Emotion Delivery!

Updated: Mar 16

At their core, filmmakers are storytellers. Imagine if filmmakers saw themselves as the ultimate emotion chefs, cooking up a storm of feelings with every script. Picture this: instead of treating a screenplay like just a stack of papers held together by some clips, they see it as a golden ticket to a wild emotional adventure. What a game-changer that would be! Suddenly, marketing your masterpiece becomes a breeze when you know exactly which emotional strings to pull, in your audience's hearts.

Why do some stories wrap us up in a warm hug and others feel like they're just drag or even want you to leave disappointed? What makes certain dialogues stick in our minds, leaving us to ponder and feel long after the credits roll, while others barely make a ripple? It's all about that heart-to-heart connection between what's on the screen and the people in the audience. Making movies isn't just about putting on a spectacle; it's about reaching out and touching someone, right in their heart. The secret sauce to blockbuster success? It's simple: make them care and feel something unforgettable. Think "Finding Nemo" or "Up" by Pixar.

1. Concept with Unique Attraction, Dilemma, or Irony At the heart of every compelling narrative lies a concept that intrigues, challenges, or surprises. In his book "Writing for Emotional Impact," Karl Iglesias advocates for concepts with unique attractions, dilemmas, or ironies that captivate the reader's imagination from the outset. Whether it's a moral quandary, an unexpected twist, or a tantalizing mystery, the concept sets the stage for a journey that promises to be anything but ordinary.

2. Storytelling is About Emotion-Delivery In Iglesias's narrative paradigm, storytelling transcends mere plot mechanics; it becomes a vessel for emotion-delivery. Every scene, every line of dialogue, and every descriptive passage is infused with the power to evoke a visceral response in the audience. Through deft manipulation of pacing, tone, and imagery, storytellers can orchestrate a symphony of emotions that resonate deeply with their audience.

3. Theme with Universal Meaning Themes serve as the backbone of storytelling, providing a canvas upon which the narrative unfolds. Iglesias emphasizes the importance of themes with universal meaning, themes that transcend individual experiences and resonate with the audience on a profound level. Whether exploring love, loss, redemption, or the human condition, a potent theme infuses the story with depth and resonance, elevating it from mere entertainment to timeless art.

4. Characters with Captivating Empathy Central to Iglesias's philosophy is the notion of crafting characters with captivating empathy. The audience must forge a deep connection with the protagonists, empathizing with their struggles, rooting for their triumphs, and mourning their losses. By imbuing characters with flaws, vulnerabilities, and inner conflicts, the storytellers breathe life into their creations, inviting people in the audience to walk in their shoes and experience the world through their eyes.

5. Story with Rising Tension Tension is the lifeblood of storytelling, propelling the narrative forward and keeping people in the audience on the edge of their seats. Iglesias advocates for a story with rising tension, where conflict escalates steadily, reaching a crescendo that leaves the audience breathless. Whether it's external threats, internal struggles, or the ticking clock of impending doom, tension keeps the story taut and the audience engrossed.

6. Structure with Engaging Design Structure forms the framework upon which the story is built, providing cohesion and clarity to the narrative arc. Iglesias advocates for a structure with engaging design, one that keeps the audience hooked from beginning to end. By employing techniques such as inciting incidents, turning points, and climactic moments, storytellers can craft a narrative that unfolds with precision and impact.

7. Scene with Mesmerizing Moments Scenes are the building blocks of storytelling, each one offering an opportunity to create moments of magic that linger in the audience's mind. Iglesias encourages writers to craft scenes with mesmerizing moments, moments that leave an indelible impression and propel the story forward. Whether it's a heart-wrenching revelation, a pulse-pounding action sequence, or a poignant exchange between characters, these moments elevate the narrative and keep readers eagerly turning the pages.

8. Description with Riveting Style Description breathes life into the story world, painting vivid images that ignite the audience's imagination. Iglesias advocates for description in the screenplay with a riveting style, using sensory details, metaphorical language, and evocative imagery to transport the audience to far-off lands and immerse them in the story's atmosphere. From lush landscapes to bustling city streets, every descriptive passage should be crafted with care, that when produced on the screen, enriches the audience's experience and deepens their emotional investment in the narrative.

9. Dialogue with Vivid Voices, Meaning, and Rhythm Dialogue is the heartbeat of storytelling, providing insights into characters' personalities, relationships, and motivations. Iglesias stresses the importance of dialogue with vivid voices, meaning, and rhythm, each line serving a purpose and resonating with authenticity. By infusing dialogue with subtext, conflict, and emotional depth, storytellers can bring characters to life and propel the story forward with compelling exchanges that ring true to life. Think, Aaron Sorkin the storyteller, and his dialogues in his movies or TV shows. Here is a taste of his storytelling brilliance, every scene crackles with dialogue that delivers the emotional punch.

10. Storytelling Craft is About Evoking Emotions At its core, storytelling craft is about evoking emotions, stirring the soul, and leaving a lasting impression on the reader. Iglesias's philosophy underscores the transformative power of storytelling, reminding writers of their ability to elicit laughter, tears, and everything in between. Through meticulous attention to detail, a deep understanding of human nature, and a willingness to embrace vulnerability, writers can harness the full potential of storytelling craft to create narratives that resonate with audiences long after the final page is turned.

In conclusion, "Writing for Emotional Impact" by Karl Iglesias serves as a beacon of guidance for writers seeking to craft stories that linger in the hearts and minds of readers. By embracing concepts with unique attractions, crafting characters with captivating empathy, and weaving narratives with rising tension and universal themes, writers can unlock the transformative power of storytelling and leave an indelible mark on the world. As we embark on our own creative journeys, let us heed Iglesias's wisdom and strive to craft stories that stir the soul, ignite the imagination, and inspire the human spirit.

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