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Tutor profile: Madison E.

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Madison E.
Reading & Writing Tutor: Creative Writing, Essay Writing, Script Writing
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Questions

Subject: Writing

TutorMe
Question:

What is the concept of "The Hemingway Iceberg" and how does that help a writer with character development in a fictional (or creative non-fiction) story?

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Madison E.
Answer:

Ernest Hemingway said, "I always try to write on the principle of the iceberg. There is seven-eighths of it underwater for every part that shows." What he meant by this is that although the writer should know her character inside and out, she should not write everything she knows about the character on the page. Writers should avoid over-explaining or "telling" instead of "showing" in a piece of creative work and learn to trust the reader as intelligent. The iceberg represents all the complexities of a character and the waterline represents what is in the subtext of (beneath) the story. Only the tip of the iceberg peaks out of water--meaning that although a writer might create a detailed and complicated character, they should keep most of what they know to themselves and let the reader meet them half way. This leads to subtle writing, realistic characters, and beautiful stories.

Subject: Film and Theater

TutorMe
Question:

What is the "three act structure" is visual storytelling and how is it divided up into digestible pieces for a writer attempting to fill a 120-page screenplay?

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Madison E.
Answer:

The three-act structure is the setup of a film structure in three parts (beginning, middle, end). It is broken up into sequences to provide structure and purpose for the writer when their story gets muddled in the midst of Act II. The "Sequence Approach" is a way of marking up a script into eight sequences that are treated as "mini-films" that contribute to the whole. The sequences are as follows: ACT I 1.) Status Quo & Inciting Incident 2.) Predicament & Lock In ACT II 3.) First Obstacle & Raising the Stakes 4.) First Culmination/Midpoint 5.) Subplot & Rising Action 6.) Main Culmination/End of Act Two ACT III 7.) New Tension & Twist 8.) Resolution Each sequence has a specific action or arc that is said to occur, and if a writer outlines their script using this method, it is much easier to digest and create.

Subject: English

TutorMe
Question:

Please list five critical reading lenses used to analyze literature and how each affects the way a reader perceives a piece of writing.

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Madison E.
Answer:

Five important critical reading lenses are as follows: psychoanalytic, Marxist, feminist, gender/queer studies, and critical race theory. Reading a piece of literature with a psychoanalytic lens is based in the psychology of Sigmund Freud. It uses his concepts of "Id", "ego", and "superego" (in simple terms, human desire verses morality) and suppression of anxieties. It takes into consideration the author and how their life affects the work. A Marxist lens concerns economic and class issues. It asks the reader to consider the social status of the characters and how that affects the story. Using a feminist lens means that the reader is considering "female" and "male" traits in the characters and analyzing the story according to them. It looks at feminine traits and sees how it either fits into the traditional stereotype or breaks free from it. Another lens, gender/queer studies, examines if gender and sexuality are carefully constructed in a piece of literature or if it is innate in the writing. The last of the five critical reading lenses is critical race theory. This lens studies how race plays a part in a narrative and asks questions like: which races are important to the narrative? whose voice is dominant in the piece? what sort of bias is innate?

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