Here's a hodge-podge of snippets of comments contained in various emails we've received over the last few months from StoryCraft users:
FROM STORYCRAFT USERS
I have published more than seventy novels with NAL/Penguin, St. Martin's
Press, Simon & Schuster, and Harlequin over the past eighteen years. Two
of my hardcover novels have been excerpted in Cosmopolitan magazine, I've
numerous awards, and my character-driven books routinely make the
Waldenbooks, B&N and USA Today Bestseller lists. Instead of getting easier,
the work has been becoming more difficult with each book and I finally came
to the conclusion that being an "instinctive, fly-into-the-mist writer" just
wasn't cutting it anymore. Oh, I could finish the books on deadline, and
they were turning out well (the strongest of my career, actually) but the
process was filled with so many frustrating dead ends and block walls it was
driving me crazy.
In desperation, and admittedly feeling a little foolish (after all, after
those books, shouldn't I know how to write a story?) I ordered Story Craft
last week, received it yesterday and within an hour my work in progress was
coming together. Two hours later, it was clicking, and after three hours,
everything had fallen into place.... [StoryCraft] pulled all the things I
needed to know - and already did but hadn't realized it - out of my balky
I thank you. My revitalized muse thanks you. And my husband, who has to
live with me during the writing process, definitely thanks you.
Despite having an honors education in Literature, and having attended - and
given - bunches of writing workshops over the years, I finally understand my
craft! I can even finally see how to apply Campbell's hero's journey to my
own stories. I'm speaking at four writers' conferences this spring and
intend to recommend the Jarvis method to everyone.
You are to be congratulated for a fine program! I have
given [competing software program] the boot after working with it for more than six years.
I have accepted a job with a production company as a story editor, supervising numerous writers who I am going to insist buy and use your software so we will have the same frame of reference
...Thanks again for the response ... and for a great piece of software. If I
can be of assistance to you, please let me know.
Rob Gregory Browne, Screenplay consultant:
...I decided to finally give StoryCraft a shot in
hopes it could help me with a story I'd had brewing.
Lo and behold -- despite my initial skepticism (after experiences
with the god-awful [competitor] and others) -- I found that StoryCraft
managed to help me organize the idea and flesh it out into a
decent plot.... the software gave me the kick in the ass I needed to keep
going and finish plotting the thing. It managed to ask the right
questions at the right time and the story template was a good
source map to keep me on track.
Be assured that I will be using StoryCraft again, and I've told people
on several screenwriting forums as much....
Congrats on StoryCraft. You've managed to succeed where others
(IMHO) have failed.
It is great software. I have never
written a book before and this software is very helpful.
...Until exploring StoryCraft, I was woefully ignorant of the Mythical structure. Now, I can see it suits my story line like a glove. "Control at last," he breathed, with a heavy sigh of relief.
...In the meantime, I am still able to use StoryCraft with no problems and am thoroughly enjoying it - whilst, at the same time, being helped immeasurably.
Again, very many thanks for your generous help,
Skip Press, author Insider's Guide to Screenwriting Agents
in his email newsletter, @HOLLYWOOD:
On writeršs newsgroups and via email to me, people ask about software for
writers all the time. Recently, Išve had a few emails about StoryCraft
from John Jarvis. I said I like it and part of the reason is the
incorporation of Joseph Campbell myth structure material. But rather than
belabor the point, take a look at this link --
Itšs an example of the Jarvis Method, using Star Wars as an example,
writing by John Jarvis. You might also check out
http://www.writerspage.com for more information. While Jarvis pays
attention to Hollywood, hešs not in California and I think not as
*colored* by Hollywood considerations, which to me is refreshing. (This
has been an unpaid, non-political announcement.)
J. Paul Barnett:
I am impressed. Not only at your compassionate and, I feel, proper business
decision, but also your expediency. This places you into the category of the
more professional software vendors. ...Count me in as a reference to the character of your company from this day
Larry Brody, FOX TV writer, attesting to StoryCraft's use even for television writing:
Got the StoryCraft, thanks, and am taking it out for a spin. What I find very interesting is that the approach is so similar to the way I taught writing when I was hiding out from Hollywood and teaching at the College of Santa Fe. My forte even as a TV writer is in structuring the stories themselves, stepping out the scenes, and I do it because I recognize the patterns in each genre and know what elements are inevitably called for in order to create strong character and conflict. The Jarvis Method seems to have consciously refined what I instinctively do. Bravo!
I also hope you won't object but I'm so enthused about StoryCraft that as
the director of the Writer's Sig at NYACC, at our next meeting scheduled
October 6th, I plan to talk about StoryCraft....
From Cynde Gregory, Ph.D.*:
Well, I couldn't resist opening the software just for a quick look--WOW!
I'm terrifically impressed. I've been resistant to the idea of writing-software, because so much educational writing software dumbs everything down to fill-in-the-blank, or select one from column A and one
from B--in other words, requires no real thought, no struggle, no creativity.
This software, on the other hand, is brilliant. It requires active, energetic participation, it makes the writer struggle. Terrific.
I will take it to my conference, along with the laptop....
[* Dr. Gregory, who has written CHILDMADE: AWAKENING CHILDREN TO CREATIVE WRITING and LEARNING CENTERS K-3: WRITING (Scholastic Professional Books), has also come to the conclusion that StoryCraft is not only useful for adults but also is an excellent creative-writing teaching tool even for persons as young as first graders. Her most recent work, FROM BORED TO BRILLIANT: 20 CLASSROOM WRITING ACTIVITIES (Scholastic
Professional Books), is due out soon. In addition, Dr. Gregory's own fiction and poetry has appeared in many literary
and commercial magazines, anthologies, and she's been featured on National Public Radio. Her classroom work recently appeared on CNN.]
Carlos Torres, referring to the special web-page of writer's resources provided for all StoryCraft users:
Just wanted to let you know that I absolutely love this webpage. It's
been very helpful.
Elizabeth Konogeris, software reviewer:
Thank you for allowing me to use and review Story Craft. I truly
enjoyed it. It is an awesome program. I wish I had more room on the
review page, anyone who has an idea for a story should use this
program. I even have a story of my own started.
...Your program is wonderful.
Thank you so much for your prompt reply. Got everything loaded and I'm up
and running. WOW! Pretty cool software....
Rita D. Miller, on misc.writing newsgroup:
To partly return all this wonderful help I've been getting from all of
you, I want to recommend StoryCraft 3.0 to everyone here who has been
asking about plotting software. I also own [competitor], but it seems
too complicated with all its theory and character arc information.
It's useful enough but has a long learning curve. Anyone can start
working with StoryCraft 3.0 right away. The instructions are built in
and come up automatically, and it builds one heck of a decent outline.
It won't do the writing for you, but it can help a writer get a good
grasp of even the most complex projects. It takes about three to four
days to build an outline using this, but it's time worth spending.
For anyone interested in this software, the URL is
http://www.writerspage.com/ The program costs $79 (about 1/4 of the
cost of [competitor])....
I have been a StoryCraft user for several months now, and it has been immensely useful in helping me develop the book for a musical I'm working on (yes, a musical!), as well as a film project I've been looking into.
Rev. Morgan Lunsford:
...very great program!
Bob Burdick (in response to a reply from our tech support):
Sir: You are a gentleman and a scholar. Many thanks from this lowly, fumble-fingered computer user. All good wishes.
Thank you for your time and quick response to my
problem. Your company has great customer service.
I am totally satisfied with the program and have been
using it all day for the most fun I have had in a long time. My story is
already shaping up and I have visited the site and found it fascinating.
Thank you so much!!
I have to say that I am impressed with the support that Storycraft provides even
to pre-purchase questions. It only serves to further my resolve to order the
course and program.
Will (aka KF Oscar):
I'm very impressed with your level of customer service. I wish all e-sites were like you in your immediate help and attention. All the others I've had to deal with in the last week have been like pulling teeth and those issues are still not resolved and all I need to do with you is ask you for help once and you take care of it immediately. It's like all the others have never heard of customer support. Like I said I'm very impressed and grateful.... Thank you very much.
P.S.: I'll make sure and make all my future writing software needs purchases from you.
Dawn M. Wood (she had lost her backup disk -- and couldn't stand to be without her StoryCraft):
Hello, I bought Story Craft about a year ago. Since then I have had to use the Startup disk on my computer which erased all my files. I thought I had downloaded everything onto a disk that I needed to get my Story Craft back. Not so, and i miss it dearly. Any chance you have a record of my order and I can re-download it??? PLEASSSSE!! [Tech support promptly sent her a new disk.]
...Excellent product, and I hope to have others buy your products.
I want to thank you for the prompt service, and all the extra things you and other helpers did, to make sure I was satisfied. That will probably result in more sales to this customer, and I look forward to seeing your free e-mails, to which I have subscribed.
...It is a big help for people like me. ...Thanks once again, great product this is.
program has become a very important part of my creative process. I want to
thank you for creating the program. It's been invaluable to me.
Thanks! I love it already and I just downloaded it an hour ago.