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Writing Advice from Trey Parker and Matt Stone

In 2014 iconic animated series South Park turns 17 years old. Since debuting in August 1997, over 240 episodes have gone to air and the show has won five Primetime Emmy Awards. In 2013, the Writers Guild of America included South Park in its 101 Best-Written Shows Ever.

With its highly controversial story lines, South Park may have as many enemies as it does fans, but its creators and writers Trey Parker and Matt Stone clearly know how to create a storyline that grabs an audience’s attention.

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Why is J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy so compelling? How about The Matrix or Harry Potter? What makes these disparate worlds come alive are clear, consistent rules for how people, societies – and even the laws of physics – function in these fictional universes?

In this animated video from TED-Ed’s Writer’s Workshop, author Kate Messner shares the methods and questions she uses to build the worlds in which her books take place.

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This video from Random House gives a behind the scenes look at the book design process. It features interviews with designers Christopher Brand, Chip Kidd, Peter Mendelsund, Marysarah Quinn and Robbin Schiff.

 

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‘Anyone who makes something for its own sake, whether you try to have it published or whether you’re just rearranging twigs on the ground because it pleases you, people who do that are artists.’

Jonathan Safran Foer is one of the most celebrated writers working in the English language today. He is best know for his two novels, Everything is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and for his first major work of non-fiction, Eating Animals. In this video recorded by  Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Continue Reading…

“There’s no reason why the simple shape of stories can’t be fed into computers, they have beautiful shapes.” — Kurt Vonnegut

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This beautiful video about creativity and talent comes from @RosieFrmThePast. She was inspired by a Youtube video, Thoughts on a Creative Career, posted by Ze Frank, an American performance artist, composer, humorist and public speaker.

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