Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance!

Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance!

Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance!So many pieces have to come together to create skillful fiction that it’s almost disingenuous to suggest there are only one or two that make or break the story. But turns out: it’s true. And if my marquee-style post title wasn’t enough to give it away, let me spell it out: for a story to work, it must possess… cohesion and resonance.

To some extent, I’ve been guilty of taking these two little guys for granted. It’s so easy to focus on the big guns—structure, character, theme—that you forget why any of  it matters in the first place. But recently, I’ve realized that the two things that truly matter to me in fiction—the two things that make or break whether an otherwise well-written story not just works, but kicks everything up to the next level—are (you guessed it) cohesion and resonance.

Actually, I’ve always harped on the importance of cohesion and resonance. If you run a search, you’ll find that both are common words on this site.  But they’ve always been background to whatever else I’m talking about—be it structure, characters, theme, or even POV.

However, of late, I find these two words frequently running through my head in response to some of the exciting big-name stories (both books and movies) that have ended up disappointing me. Mentally, I find myself doing a Barney Fife impression: They! have! to! be! shown!

Barney Fife Cohesion and Resonance

The Andy Griffith Show (1960-68), CBS.

So today, let’s talk cohesion and resonance. Let’s examine what each is, why they matter individually, how they work together, and how you can make sure your story isn’t missing out on these two incredibly vital and powerful magic ingredients.

What Is Cohesion?

Cohesion is logic. Cohesion is organization. Cohesion is cutting away the nonessential to find the essential.

Basically, cohesion is what happens when everything in a story is there for a reason. Every single part of the story is part of a united whole. It all pulls together, seamlessly, toward the same end goal.

Cohesion is not a hodge-podge of ideas thrown onto the page just because they’re all shiny and cool. Cohesion is what you get from a writer who has a specific vision for the story and who works with diligence and discipline to discover the story elements best optimized to support that vision and then pare away all the darlings that distract from it.

A few weeks ago, someone asked me to name some of my favorite movies. I started rattling off titles: Great Escape, Gladiator, Master and Commander, True Grit, Warrior, Black Hawk Down, Singin’ in the Rain, Secondhand Lions, Bourne Identity, It’s a Wonderful Life. I immediately realized the one thing all these stories have in common is a focused and cohesive plot. It’s so well done in these stories that you almost take it for granted. I certainly do. I don’t say, “Oh, I love The Great Escape because it’s so cohesive.” When I’m watching it, studying it, trying to figure out what makes it so powerful for me, I’m thinking more about technical stuff like plot and pacing, character and theme.

Writing Your Story’s Theme (Amazon affiliate link)

But here’s the thing: plot, pacing, character, and theme are founded on cohesion. You can have a story that does all those things—even does them well—but if it doesn’t bring them together in a cohesive way, the story as a whole will falter and fail.

Granted, it’s preferable to have pieces that are better than the whole, rather than pieces and whole that both stink. But how much better to have a story that is brilliant because its brilliant pieces came together into a single brilliant whole?

The Best Way to Create Cohesion

All right, so you’re sold: pass the cohesion. But where do you get it?

Structuring Your Novel IPPY Award 165

Structuring Your Novel (Amazon affiliate link)

Cohesion is about all the pieces in your story coming together into a unified whole. But the single best place to start that coming-together is with your structure. If your story lacks cohesive structure, it will also lack the foundation upon which to execute the rest of your vision.

And, yeah, we’re back to the idea of vision. If you’re going to create a cohesive structure, you have to know what you want this story to be as a whole. It has to be more than just a random collection of dramatic events carefully timed to coincide with the structural beats.

Here are several points to keep in mind:

  • Structure is the backbone of your story.

If you don’t have a structure, you don’t have a story. You just have a bunch of stuff happening—and that’s if  you’re lucky. I’ve seen far too many stories that offered lots of stuff happening but next to no progression in the plot. Structure is what keeps you on track and assures you’re creating a story rather than just action.

  • Structural events tell you what this story is about.
Structuring Your Novel Workbook

Structuring Your Novel Workbook (Amazon affiliate link)

Anybody with a little education can structure a story. But you know you’ve found a masterfully structured story when you can pull all the major structural moments out of the narrative (as I do in the Story Structure Database) and see the common elements from plot point to plot point. Nothing is random. It all connects. One of my favorite examples is Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator—a sprawling and varied story that never loses sight of itself thanks to its structural underpinning in the throughline of Howard Hughes’s obsession with aviation.

  • Structural events need to form a continuous line of catalytic change.

Structure moves the plot. Plot points move the plot. That’s the whole point (!). But the only way you can know you’re moving the plot is if that plot is changing. If events don’t force characters to act and react and act again, always changing the story’s landscape, then the plot isn’t moving and the structure isn’t working.

  • The three most important moments for keeping your structure on track are the Inciting Event, the Midpoint, and the Climactic Moment.
5 Secrets of Story Structure

Free E-Book: 5 Secrets of Story Structure (Amazon affiliate link)

This isn’t to undermine the importance of other structural moments, obviously. But if you want to verify that your structure is cohesive—all its parts are telling the same story—the first place to look is at your Inciting Event (halfway through the First Act), your Midpoint (halfway through the Second Act), and the Climactic Moment (end of the Third Act). The Inciting Event and Climactic Moment, in particular, should bookend each other; the Inciting Event asks a question which the Climactic Moment directly answers. The Midpoint is the Moment of Truth in between that redirects the story from the character’s understanding of the question in the first half (in both the plot and the theme) and the character’s understanding of the answer in the second half.

When it comes right down to it, good structure is all about good foreshadowing: plants and pay-offs. The end is in the beginning—and if it is not, then the story isn’t cohesive.

What Is Resonance?

A story with cohesion is a story that is already far better than most. But cohesion is only half the magic. The other half is resonance.

Resonance is meaning. Resonance is what reader Eric Copenhaver called, in an email to me, “mythic value.” Resonance is what raises a story from interesting anecdote to universal affirmation.

You know that feeling you get when you connect with a story? That’s resonance. And that’s what we’re all looking for, as both readers and writers. Resonance is what lifts a story beyond mere entertainment into an experience of life itself.

Stories without resonance may be fun, but they’re quickly forgotten. This is true in any genre. Whether it’s a “big” epic journey or a “little” comedy sketch, it won’t matter to readers on any level unless it is a mirror reflecting a truth back at them.

Cohesion and resonance go hand in hand because they build one off the other. It’s hard (although not impossible) to get resonance out of a story that lacks cohesion. Cohesion is the ship in which resonance sails; if it’s leaky, the deeper meaning is going to get at least a little water-logged. And vice versa: if there’s no resonance helming your perfectly cohesive ship, best case scenario is that it just aimlessly wanders the seas.

Resonance is a little slippery, mostly because it’s also a little subjective. Although there are certainly universal truths we all resonate with, there are also specific stories or scenes that affect the individual in ways they do not affect the group. Still, it’s pretty easy to spot the stories that didn’t get it done in the resonance department: they’re soulless.

These are the stories you can just tell had little to no passion behind them. They’re stories that were churned out either to make money or just to fit a technically perfect structure (probably both). They’re stories that lack imagination, originality, empathy, and courage.

That said, it’s entirely possible to be imaginative, original, empathetic, and courageous—and still produce a story that lacks resonance, simply because it wasn’t executed well.

The Best Way to Create Resonance

Like cohesion, resonance only occurs when everything in the story comes together to support a singular vision. But as with cohesion and structure, there is an obvious entry point to checking and refining your story’s resonance.

The entry point to resonance is theme.

Great themes can arise from poorly-structured stories. Usually, this is simply the result of an author’s deep personal awareness and exceptional narrative skill. Few writers start out fully equipped with either. But the good news is that creating resonance via theme is something you can learn to do consciously and deliberately.

If cohesion is intellectual resonance, then resonance is emotional cohesion. Resonance is what you get when you’re able to purposefully shape plot and theme to create a unified feeling in your readers. Along the way,  you’re likely to give them some interesting ideas to chew on, but even before their brains begin to process all that, they’re going to have a sense, a feeling, that Yeeeeeeessss, this works. This is right. This is true.

If cohesion kickstarts with vision, then resonance kickstarts with honesty. You’ve created a smart and cohesive plot; now you write your guts out finding its honest core.

Here are a few pointers to keep in mind:

  • Theme is what your story is really about.

Resonant stories are those that use their plots to tell the story of the theme, rather than using the theme to simply embellish the plot. Think of plot as the extroversion of the theme. The plot provides the dramatic background that forces the characters to physically work through questions of universal truth. The theme and plot are integrally connected in that one always comments on the other. The plot is, in many ways, a metaphor for the theme, and theme is likewise a commentary on the plot.

  • Theme is the central existential question/answer that powers your plot.

A lot of people think “theme” is a one-word virtue or vice that sums up the essence of the story. Although you often can sum up a story’s theme in one word, it’s more instructive to think of theme as a question—and the plot as an externalized search for the answer. Try boiling your theme down to a central question (e.g., What is the cost of war? How do we overcome our pasts? Is idealism dangerous?). A complex story will never be as simple as just one question (indeed, ask a group of people to name the central theme in your favorite story and you’re likely to get many different—and probably accurate—suggestions). But that central question should be your guiding light in choosing cohesive plot elements every step of the way.

  • Theme brings plot and character together.

Creating Character Arcs (Amazon affiliate link)

Writers often talk about “plot-driven fiction” vs. “character-driven fiction.” I would argue that truly resonant fiction is rarely either/or. This is because theme is the bridge between plot and character. The character’s arc explores the theme’s inner workings, while the character’s actions explore the theme’s external realities. When done well, plot, character, and theme come together powerfully in a cohesive and resonant whole.

  • Theme is not dogmatic.

It is impossible to write a truly resonant story if you believe you have all the answers. Because, face it, you don’t. (Sorry, keepin’ it real.) This is where the tough part of being honest comes into play. When you select your story’s central question, you must be willing to chase down all the possible answers. This doesn’t mean you have to believe them all. But it does mean you have to empathize with them enough to play devil’s advocate. You have to examine all aspects of your question with painful honesty. There’s a quote I like about how good fiction doesn’t offer answers, it just asks questions. This isn’t entirely true, since most stories will offer some kind of solution via the protagonist’s final choices. But if those final choices are going to ring true and give readers something worth thinking about, the journey to the end must be one of empathy.


Okay, so I admit I’m writing this post for totally selfish reasons. I love cohesive and resonant fiction. I can’t get enough of it. I want more, more more. I want to write it, and I want you to write it so I can read it! In the midst of all your structuring, character building, and prose polishing, take a moment to check these two all-important ingredients of great fiction off your list. If you can create a story with cohesion and resonance, I guarantee you will have written something truly magical.

Wordplayers, tell me your opinion! Can you think of any other magic ingredients that take fiction from good to great? Tell me in the comments!

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About K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland

K.M. Weiland is the award-winning and internationally-published author of the acclaimed writing guides Outlining Your Novel, Structuring Your Novel, and Creating Character Arcs. A native of western Nebraska, she writes historical and fantasy novels and mentors authors on her award-winning website Helping Writers Become Authors.


  1. This is why I use theme-centric outlining. When the events that lay out the theme are structured right, cohesion and resonance are both achieved.

  2. This needed to be said. Of course cohesion and resonance are each as important as everything else in the story– because they *are* everything else, going through it all and seeing that not one of the pieces is interfering (cohesion) and might even be contributing to something more (resonance). A story with cohesion likes what it is too much to dilute it; one with resonance has a real love for its center.

    We can find these in the classic movies you mention. I also see them in the moments that some more ordinary adventure, comedy or kid’s tale holds itself above the crowd just by having a proper sense of what it’s trying to be. That’s cohesion (in simple cases like that I call it “heart”), and things like the Marvel movies are famous for it, a long string of stories that (with a few key slips) always seem to hold themselves together. Plenty of them go beyond that to resonance as well, properly tapping into what they’re really about. Too many other things in similar genres (like certain DC movies) have all the same pieces in a familiar order, but in the end they leak like a sieve and have no feeling at all.

  3. Robert Billing says

    Totally agree. You are saying exactly what I have believed since I started writing.

    Being an engineer by training I am used to getting huge and complex things to fit together. I try to achieve cohesion by a “top down” approach. For example in “The Thirteenth Commandment” the story arc at the top level was “Teenage girl is threatened by criminals. She refuses to be a victim and fights back, but she goes to the dark side doing it and becomes a criminal herself. In the end the power of love brings her to redemption.” That’s the whole of the top plot arc. Then I take each bit, each phase of her life, and build a structure inside that. In the first part she kills a drug dealer in self-defence, but takes his lists of suppliers and customers. Inside that I build still finer, explaining how she gets a boy she fancies to decode the dealer’s coded notes. I keep going, filling details into the outline but never changing the outline to guarantee that the whole is cohesive.

    That to me is important. I never change outlines unless I scrap a story completely and start again, in the same way that I never change backstory. The worldbuilding does not move, the story has to be built to fit it.

    At the same time the story is slowly sliding into resonance with one of the archetypes, in this case the person who zealously fights for what they believe is right, only to discover that they have been very, very wrong. In a sense the apostle Paul is the template here. He does his utmost to destroy the christian church, then realises that he is fighting on the wrong side.

    Now it all slots together, the plot like an arched roof over the characters all pursuing their own agendas on the floor beneath.

    That’s how I do it.

    • Hey, Robert. As one engineer to another, I appreciate your detailed example of “fitting things together.” Thanks!

      While reading Katie’s description of cohesion, I kept thinking of “continuity,” which is a closely-related concept. Not sure if the term is used as much in writing as in film.

      Also, I kept remembering Blake Snyder’s description of Logline from SAVE the CAT. Katie almost touches on it when she explains that Theme is what the story is actually about.

      Even if readers can identify several different themes that are in our stories, it makes sense to know what the story is about (in our own mind) before we start writing.

      • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

        I’m not an engineer (obviously), but I appreciate the mindset I associate with that vocation. I think one of the most destructive popular notions in writing is that it’s all “creativity.” This is pulling fully half you available cards from the deck. Creativity must be understood and used consciously and, thus, logically.

  4. Thats quite a piece of writing! Im just getting into analysis of stories more, but its quite a whirlpool.

    My own paraphrase of this idea is that the story needs to make sense in its own context, and connect in a meaningful way with the reader. Both of these from start to finish.

    I felt aspects that i believe were lost in veronica Roth’s ‘Allegiant’ book reflect this. I felt it lost some of its cohesion (if ive understood your post correctly) and i think some of the resonance was lost with Tobias’ arc and the overall ending.
    Just my view obviously.

    • Yeah. I hate it when you go through an entire story, only to end up with things not being resolved or properly explained, or a really unpleasant/weak ending.
      I recently read another series that ended with little being resolved, and a really annoying deus ex machina. You gotta be kidding me, I could come up with a better ending than that…

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I’m not super-familiar with Roth’s stories; I’ve only seen the first movie. But I got that vibe too.

      • Tobias is ‘Four’. I enjoyed the first two books, but the third, which was ok in principle but not as the final culmination of the series. The climax was limited and short, much less than the first two in fact.

        I also think a lot of the content in terms of explaining things added so much new information it was almost like reading a different story just using familiar characters.

        Im just trying to make sure i learn more from whatever i read.

  5. Great analysis. It made me realise what I disliked (or maybe that is too strong a word) in a book I read recently: I should have loved it, it was this quirky mix of fantasy-science full of good humour and sarcastic reference to our modern world – but somehow it took ages to read. It made me tired. I think now the problem was “forced cohesion”, if you understand what I mean. EVERYTHING was linked, but more hammered into being linked than naturally woven together. There were so many smart plot lines and twists, it felt a bit forced. And yes, the author made sure they were all “necessary” for the big climax. But I kept thinking: you could have done with less. You just fell in love with all your ideas so much that you could not decide which to pursue, so you stuffed them all into one story.
    Following your metaphor: the “ship” was too big, too armoured … could not stay afloat. I resonated with some parts, but not with the whole thing.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Yes, I’m going to do another post soon on why authors must be wary of self-indulgence in their writing. Seeing a lot of that lately too, especially with established fantasy writers.

  6. I had to stop reading this post to scribble down a page of ideas to fix my recently-critiqued WIP! I’m not even sure what exactly you said that unlocked the brain wave, but I’ve got a solid direction to explore next time I sit down to edit. So thank you! (And yes, I did come back to finish the post afterward. A+ content.)

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Woot! That’s always the best. 🙂

    • Naomi P Johnson says

      Me too Tracey. Just finished listening to the piece on Katie’s podcast (i.e. spoken by her) and, I’ve come straight to my writing desk to wrestle a few of these fascinating links into their rightful place.
      Easy to do at the stage I’m at – building the blueprint for my book and wrestling some smart story science into it. Not so easy once I start the work likely.
      But, what better place TO START looking out for my coherence and resonance, than (via Katie’s great guidance and instruction here) in the frameworking of my project?

      I’m grateful! THANKS KM!

  7. Jenny North says

    I had a funny experience about this while editing a superhero action/comedy story not too long ago. At one point I looked at deleting this juvenile prank that the heroine’s rival plays on her until I realized that it actually set up and reinforced a lot of underlying things that were significant to the plot and the theme. It was there for a reason!

    But later, one of my beta readers observed that one of my chapters was a bit talky and I had to agree. But that freaked me out since how could I totally rewrite an entire scene if I couldn’t even delete a single stupid joke? Well I looked at what the scene was trying to accomplish–the heroine meets her cousins and we see the effect her heroics are having on her normal life–and replaced it with one where she meets her cousins and has to surreptitiously prevent a burglary while still in her secret identity. It added a bit of action to spice up the story but it also fit nicely since I first closely examined why that original scene was there and how it moved the plot and theme forward.

    That was kind of an eye opener for me since sometimes all the structure can seem like a straitjacket, but after I saw how different that second scene was from the first draft it taught me how much flexibility we still have as writers to work within the structure. There are still lots of ways to tell a story, but that “invisible guardrail” of theme definitely kept me honest with the underlying message!

  8. Talking about stories with cohesion but not resonance reminded me of Roseblood, which I think is interesting, because a lot of people like that book. The plot was extremely cohesive and engaging (it kinda felt like I was slingshotted through it) and I came out feeling dazed, very impressed, but ultimately kind of empty. It’s possible it just didn’t resonate with me, which I guess brings up a good point…even though not all stories will resonate with everyone, if they’re cohesive, they might have a wider audience anyway? I don’t know if that’s a valid observation. Or perhaps the story truly didn’t have any resonance, and just blew people away with the fast-paced cohesion. I read it in two days and to be honest, it felt more like riding a roller coaster than reading a book.

    I don’t know, what do you think? Have you read Roseblood? It’s a Phantom of the Opera retelling that was pretty popular last year.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Resonance is definitely subjective to some extent. Just look at The Last Jedi. :p

      It’s extremely hard to purposefully create resonance (on a wider scale) without having cohesion as its foundation. However, it’s definitely possible to create a cohesive story that lacks resonance.

      I’ve haven’t read Roseblood, so can’t comment directly. In general, I’m not a big fan of retellings for the very reason you indicate here: I find they often lack that soulful spark that made the original so resonant.

  9. DirectorNoah says

    Another fantastically well written article Katie, thank you!
    I agree that Cohesion and Resonance are definitely two very powerful ingredients for good stories, and I think they’re something which is becoming increasingly neglected nowadays in fiction, particularly in modern movies, sadly.

    I did read however, that some writers don’t like to plan and outline the theme upfront, saying it can become too forced and structured, preferring instead to write the first draft, and then strengthen and bring out the latent theme within, to ensure a more natural, organic theme.

    I would really appreciate your thoughts on this, to help me decide what to do with my own story. Thanks!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      That mindset is so prevalent it’s almost a cliche: don’t purposefully think about theme. I adamantly disagree with this. I feel it comes from a mindset of fear (what if I squeeze my theme too hard and end up preaching), which is the result of a misunderstanding (or lack of understanding) about what theme really is and how it is generated by the cohesive intersection of plot and character. I touch on this a bit more in this post: 5 Misconceptions About Writing That I Used to Believe.

    • Jenny North says

      I’m not nearly as knowledgeable as Katie, but in my experience trying to work theme into a story after you’ve written a first draft is a lot like putting the skeleton of a chicken into a boneless chicken breast. It’s a lot of hard work and the end result won’t be pretty. 🙂

      That said, even a little up-front planning can go a long way. For instance, I’ve been struggling with the “B plot” of a story since it’s the third in a series and I’ve been stuck on what to do with some of the supporting characters. At first I came up with something fun and interesting but I soon realized that it wasn’t relevant to the main plot and had nothing to do with the theme, so it felt very flat. But fortunately I caught it in the planning stages and didn’t write it!

      Now I’m working on a different idea, something that’s more integral to the main plot and resonates with the theme and it just feels like a better fit. But had I written the draft I’d first had in mind I think it would have been a lot more work and I would have had a harder time having to delete what ultimately didn’t resonate. Just my two cents!

      • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

        Hah, another great analogy! I tell you guys are writers. 😉

      • DirectorNoah says

        Thanks for your thoughts, @Jenny North!
        I’m a big convert of planning, it’s usually always the best method for writing, and it makes life so much easier! Plus, I’ve avoided a few near – miss disasters that way too☺
        I’ve already got a pretty good idea what my theme is, now just gotta weave it into the story!

      • Made me laugh audibly, it did, your image of putting a skeleton back into a chicken, and the people in this coffee shop are looking at me strangely. But I heartily agree, the sooner theme is consciously chosen, the better. Best not to ‘wing’ it, ha-ha. I’ll not mention the indy movie whose creators realized their theme didn’t fit the project when it was alread in post. (They figured out how to fix it, but that’s another story.)

  10. What immediately jumps to mind is a symphony orchestra. Each member playing a different instrument in a different section, what determines the sound they produce is the music in front of them and the conductor’s interpretation of it. If it’s a gloriously harmonious piece, it can transport the listener on a journey. If it’s a hideously modern, discordant tone poem… a jumble of noise… a cacophony of bangs, clashes and shrieks, it can fray nerves!

    And, I may be completely off base here, I think that’s where the author/conductor has to be so familiar with the story/music that they can draw out of each character/member/section the best performance possible.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Yes, great analogy–except the writer isn’t just the conductor; the writer is every single member of the orchestra at the same time. No pressure. 😉

      • LOL! Absolutely none! Although… when you put it like that, suddenly mine is no longer a world renowned orchestra (here I am imagining having the Berlin Philharmonic before me) but me… just me… as a singularly clumsy one-man-band. 😉

      • DID and MPD aside, writers do have ‘committees’ in their heads that affect and inspire and sabotage their writing. Also, richly created characters can take a story into new territory, planting things that turn out to be vital much later in the book and telling you what the theme really is.

        I sure agree about dogmatism. I loathe didactic works. My screenwriting instructor defined theme thus: “A single issue or question about the human condition that is explored by the work from all sides.”

        Perhaps a word about motif would be useful. Theme is seldom explicit, though sometimes a character will reveal it elliptically or expressly in dialogue. But there are opportunities to state or exemplify theme or character with an appropriate visual.

  11. I plan on doing an outline for Lotus’s book who is one of Leilani’s daughters and also her eldest daughter. For the self publishing checklist on some day, that since I will need a marketing plan. Does that mean for the book or what book I am doing?

  12. I have a question that has to do with cohesion. I’ve noticed in the story structure database, some works with multiple point of views have separate beats, while in others they are the same. Is there a rule of thumb for when the different POV characters share the same plot points, and when they’re different?

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Not really a rule of thumb per se. I touch on the issues of plot points in multiple POV in this post on dual timelines. But the short answer is that you can handle this in two ways: either use the same plot point to drive the plot in both POVs – or time it so each POV gets its own structure-advancing plot point at the proper time. In the vast majority of cases, the first is preferable, since it will contribute to a much tighter story.

  13. Jack Johnson says

    Wow, talk about resonance, name-dropping Eric Copenhaver outta nowhere. I went to school with Eric Copenhaver! I bought bathroom tissue from Eric Copenhaver! I went to Eric Copenhavers wedding!
    (OK granted there’s probably several Eric’s, but ya sure made this post resonate with me more than I was expecting!)


  1. […] “So many pieces have to come together to create skillful fiction that it’s almost disingenuous to suggest there are only one or two that make or break the story. But turns out: it’s true. And if my marquee-style post title wasn’t enough to give it away, let me spell it out: for a story to work, it must possess… cohesion and resonance.” This is truly a powerful post. K.M. Weiland has a way of looking at prose that rings true. I learn so much from her break-downs of stories. […]

  2. […] Cohesion and Resonance (Helping Writers Become Authors) […]

  3. […] Since this cannot be escaped, I can develop it into an asset. In fact, it is an asset. Some of my favorite stories are ones in which I can draw multiple parallels between the plot and my own life events. I know I’m not the only reader who feels that way, either. So by tapping into this process, it can help create resonance with my readers. Resonance reaches people like few story elements can. (See this article.) […]

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