Or rather, at the Super-Sekrit Clubhouse, Marshall Payne has a rather good, considered essay on What is a Story?
In my recent interview with John Kessel I asked him:
You’ve taught at Clarion many times. Do you see one reoccurring problem that new writers face that seems the most difficult to overcome?
Learning what makes a story different from a collection of paragraphs, scenes, vigorous but not-meaningful action. You can write, even sell, a lot of fiction without grasping what makes a good story. It took me years before I began to grasp this. I suppose some might say I still haven’t.
Another way to cut it: Figuring out what it is you can write that is not completely derivative, that somehow expresses your individuality but also connects with an audience. It takes time to do this.
In the comments after the interview, John’s answer to this question garnered some genuine interest. So I thought I’d tackle this important aspect of storytelling craft and give readers here a chance to voice their thoughts on what constitutes a story.
I’d recommend going here to read the rest http://marshallpayne1.livejournal.com/99255.html