Jul 25, 2011

Guest Author Post: Bryan Cohen

If That's True
By Bryan Cohen

When I was learning to do improvised comedy in college, my team's first coach, Ross White, uttered a phrase that changed my thinking when creating any type of scene in a book or a show. This phrase has changed the way I think about characters and plot forever.

The phrase was: "If that's true, what else is true."

This short, seemingly simple phrase is a beacon of creative energy. I used the phrase thoroughly in my construction of my new book Ted Saves the World. In the story, an average, forgettable teenage boy gains super powers just seconds after he's broken up with at the small town's family diner.

After creating this situation, I applied the phrase. If Ted has just received super powers in a town where everybody practically knows each other, then the knowledge of his super powers is going to spread. If his identity as a super hero spreads in the world of today, practically everybody in the world will hear about it very quickly in a culture with a 24/7 news cycle. If everybody knows about it, that means the villains will know about it too and they'll be able to track him down easily and effectively.

Later on in the Ted Saves the World series, I will be applying this "if that's true, what else is true" idea even further to the universe. If Ted is a super hero known by the rest of the world, then people will flock to his town, rejuvenating the local economy. It also means that Ted and the people around him are constantly in danger.

Another character in the world of the book, Erica, is a beautiful, blond cheerleader who was murdered shortly before the events of Ted Saves the World. She is resurrected by an ancient spirit to protect Ted as he tries to become a savior of the world. By applying the phrase to her, I came up with a mysterious subplot. If Erica's former body inhabitant was murdered, that means that someone out there killed her and may want to do it again to cover his tracks.

It's crazy that even a tiny phrase like the one Ross shared with me could affect me over a decade later. I'm glad that I listened. And if it's true that I listened and learned from the phrase, maybe it's true that I can apply it for the rest of my life.

--

Description of Ted Saves the World (Available for just $0.99):
A possessed cheerleader. A cursed gang of criminals. Mysterious telekinetic powers. An angry ex-girlfriend in gym class? One second, sophomore in high school Ted endures his first breakup in his favorite place in town. The next, a mysterious blue light turns him into a worldwide superhero sensation for taking down a posse of grisly murderers. As his views on YouTube increase and his friend Dhiraj tries to capitalize on the marketing potential, his dangers increase as well when a presumed-dead cheerleader begins taking a personal interest. Can Ted survive his first week as a superhero in the public eye? This novella is the first taste in a series of full-length novels about the adventures of Ted Finley and Erica LaPlante. The book is also available on Barnes & Noble and Smashwords for $0.99.

Giveaway:
Bryan Cohen is giving away four $25 Amazon gift cards, one for each week of his month long blog tour. To enter, simply comment with your e-mail address (feel free to substitute @ with (at) or other tricks to stop spammers from getting it). Bryan will draw the four names at the end of the tour, picking one entrant at random from each week’s set of blog posts. Entries will be counted through Monday, August 15th, 2011. Enter on as many sites as you want, follow the tour at Build Creative Writing Ideas. If Ted reaches the Top 100 on Amazon at any point during the tour, a fifth $25 card will be added to the giveaway.

Biography:
Bryan Cohen is a writer, actor and comedian from Dresher, Pennsylvania. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2005 with degrees in English and Dramatic Art and a minor in Creative Writing. He has written seven books including 1,000 Creative Writing Prompts: Ideas for Blogs, Scripts, Stories and More. Contact Bryan through his Ted Saves the World blog, his Build Creative Writing Ideas site or Twitter.

19 comments:

  1. "If that's true, what else is true." - this is a great phrase & I can see how it would lend it self to a creative outlet. It's kind of a What if? type of question.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  2. Great post thank you for sharing! I can't wait to read the book been following the blog tour!
    tishajean@ charter.net

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  3. Thanks again!

    thegirlonfire27 at gmail dot com

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  4. "If that's true, what else is true" really opened up a lot of possibilities. Love that quote!

    Thanks for holding the giveaway!

    layen

    lincalc at gmail dot com

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  5. Awesome, thanks again!

    Vivien
    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

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  6. Wow! "If that's true, what else is true." is definitely a phrase I'll be using in my writing endeavours. Very informative post. Thank you:)

    Sarah
    sarah.setar@gmail.com

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  7. Sounds like an interesting read.

    mami2jcn at gmail dot com

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  8. Congratulations to Bryan! That hard work is paying off!
    someluckydog at gmail dot com

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  9. Thanks for the chance!

    spamscape [at] gmail [dot] com

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  10. Thanks for the giveaway
    fwdsd45 @gmail.com

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  11. what an amazing concept! it got me thinking as i read the ripple effect of it's effect on you... definitely a strategy i will be adding to my own writing tips file! thanks Bryan..

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for this amazing giveaway - I would love to win!

    susanw28 (at) mindspring (dot) com

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  13. All of these blogs and you find something different to say in them all! sallyawolf@gmail.com

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  14. Thanks for the giveaway!

    abbydillon16 AT yahoo DOT com

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  15. This book sounds really interesting!
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    readingowling AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  16. Good luck with your tour and please enter me.
    CalifKitties {at} Aol {dot} com

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  17. Very generous giveaway! Good luck with your blog tour!
    Digicats {AT} Sbcglobal [DOT] Net

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  18. Marking this book down as a to-read, thank you! edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom

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  19. Woo sounds wicked cool!

    Thanks for the giveaway too.

    reviewsbyabby at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete

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