Posts Tagged ‘archetypes’

Dear Writers/Caregivers/Advocates for Loved Ones,

Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan here . . .  I see how helping a loved one/being an advocate is so much like writing a book.

My papa has been diagnosed with Parkinsonism by his neurologist. If Papa is telling his story, he would be the first-person narrator; if I’m telling the story about him, then I would be the third-person narrator.

A book (story) consists of one main character (also known as “hero” or “protagonist”) or multiple main characters and other characters (other archetypes), a subject matter that is discussed repeatedly (“theme”) and at least one plotline (“what happened?”). The merging of these elements helps the writer show the hero’s journey.

Helping a loved one/being an advocate consists of at least 2 protagonists (YOU and the loved one) and other archetypes (physicians, healthcare and social service providers, other family members and friends, neighbors, coworkers, vendors, . . . the stranger who gives up her/his seat on the train for you), themes (the cause for help and advocacy and the related issues), and plotlines (the interconnected events associated with all the characters).  Who will be the most transformed in the story?  The loved one?  You the caregiver/advocate? The person who is most transformed would be the main character/hero/protagonist.  Perhaps both people will go through great transformation.  Two protagonists!

I am writing – I keep a notebook for whenever I visit my papa or when I do something on his behalf- gosh, there are so many little “subplots” to keep track of! (Is this Papa’s third or last session with the physical therapist? Mary and I need to witness the exercises so that when the P.T. closes the case, we would be able to coach Papa. Did he say he wanted another heating pad? Oh my, there are at least 18 model to choose from.   Gotta review friends’ advice about what is a comfortable bed and also Consumer Reports. Then Papa has to “test drive” some beds. You just can’t shop for a mattress the way you shop for a pair of shoes.

MATTRESS SHOPPING TIPS (from Sealy’s website)

  1. Plan to spend at least one hour in the store.
  2. Wear loose clothing and easily removable shoes.
  3. Test out mattresses in groups of three for easier comparison.
  4. Lie on each mattress for 5 to 15 minutes to let it fully adapt to your body.
  5. Don’t feel rushed. It’s ok to ask for privacy.

I would add:  Bring your own pillow so that your neck is supported while trying out mattresses; maybe bring an extra pillow case too.

And, I am reading the book The Brain’s Way of Healing: Remarkable Discoveries and Recoveries from the Frontiers of Neuroplasticity by Norman Doidge, M.D.  Chapter 2 is titled “A Man Walks Off His Parkinsonian Symptoms”  . . . how John Pepper has been able to reverse the major symptoms, the ones that Parkinson’s patients dread most, those that lead to immobility. He’s done so with an exercise program he devised and with a special kind of concentration . . .

All the “characters” in Dr. Doidge’s books (The Brain’s Way of Healing  and The Brain that Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science) and in Dr. Victoria Sweet‘s book (God’s Hotel: A Doctor, a Hospital, and a Pilgrimage to the Heart of Medicine) are guiding me on my journey as an advocate for my father.  And, I just know that my mom plays a huge role in helping me.

I thank everyone who has given me her/his time, energy, and prayers.

Here are links to websites I’ve relied on lately:

https://franceskakugawa.wordpress.com/category/caregiving/  Frances Kakugawa

http://www.writeradvice.com/ywmtdw.html  B. Lynn Goodwin

http://www.normandoidge.com/  Norman Doidge, M.D.

https://www.michaeljfox.org/  Michael J. Fox Foundation

Special thanks to Margie Yee Webb, Frances Kakugawa, Penny Manson, Debbie Ramos and her daughter Melanie who went out of their way to help me research specific items and to Mary, my sister Maria Leung, Linda Harris, Sue, Janet, and Elaine for being there in person.

Sincerely,

Writing Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author & Fanbase-Building Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan says: “Reach out, not stress out. Enjoy your writer’s journey.”
http://WritingCoachTeresa.com

http://lovemadeofheart.com/

http://lovemadeofheart.com/blog/

https://www.youtube.com/user/teresaleyung

 

 

 

 

 

September 5, 2011

Dear Lynn Henriksen,

I miss my mom so so much. Your inviting me to guest-blog is a huge gift and I thank you. Today is Labor Day. I salute you, your mom, my mom, and all moms who labor/labored with love and hope for their families.

Sincerely,

Teresa

“What Does Your Protagonist Want?”

By  Teresa LeYung-Ryan, aka “Writing Career Coach & Manuscript Consultant Teresa”

“If you’re writing a novel or memoir, what does your protagonist want?”
“What are your themes and who are your archetypes?”
“If you’re writing a how-to book, what are the issues?”
“Do you want to build your platform to attract agents, publishers, and fans/readers?”

These are the questions I ask when writers hire me as their coach.

For many writers, the first question (“What does your protagonist want?”) is not an easy one to answer. What does your main character want when the story opens? As the story moves forward?

For memoir authors, the protagonist is the Self. You the author lived your story and you know the outcome; now is the chance to engage readers via story-telling techniques and show them what you wanted and how you went about getting (or not getting) what you wanted.

For novel authors, oftentimes the protagonist (or another major character) is modeled after the author; what the protagonist wants is also oftentimes a recurring theme for the author.

In the opening scene of Love Made of Heart (my autobiographical novel about an adult-daughter struggling to understand her mother’s mental illness ), protagonist Ruby Lin asks herself: What have I done? (as she watches police officers escort her mother from her apartment).

Ruby wants her mother to get well; she wants to return to her routines; she wants to forget her past; she wants a wise elder who listens and doesn’t judge. As we get to know Ruby, we find out what her “big wants” are—to find love and forgiveness.

I, Teresa LeYung-Ryan, author of the novel, did not have a maternal grandmother. How I used to fantasize about a kind and wise Grandmama to run to! Writing fiction gave me the luxury to give my protagonist something I never had, so, I created the elderly neighbor Mrs. Nussbaum (embodying the mentor and ally archetypes); she would listen to Ruby and not judge her.

In the introduction of Lynn Scott’s memoir A Joyful Encounter: My Mother, My Alzheimer Clients, and Me, the author reveals: I needed money. I was sixty-seven and living thinly on Social Security… As we read on, we meet the other characters/archetypes and see how they help the author get the “big want” (what money can’t buy) . . .  a spiritual journey to her mother’s love.  Lynn Henriksen’s review of this same book ends with “… Scott’s book made me laugh, cry, and wish I could have my mother back for just a day, even one more hour.”

Aah, to have Mom back for just a day, even one more hour. That is exactly what yours truly wants right now.  I’ve been ill (coping with symptoms from wheat-intolerance) and I yearn for my mom’s hugs and encouraging words: “All will be fine, my darling daughter.” But, I can’t get what I want on a physical level; Mom died over ten years ago of metastasized breast cancer.

My biggest angel is my mom, and, I ask her to help me on a daily basis. “Mom, I want to feel well.”  My muscles and sinuses were hurting; fatigue overwhelmed me; then, when depression moved in . . . I knew that I needed to be an active protagonist. I stopped eating breads and anything made with wheat flour (and that include flaky pie crusts, almond tea cakes, Challah, tortilla that hold a burrito together, Pad Thai, and pasta).

My mastermind colleague Lori Noack reminded me that wheat is in soy sauce (gosh I eat a lot of Chinese food too) and in marinades and salad dressings (yikes).  LN, thank you for your encouraging emails!

Next, I went to see a Chinese Herbal Medicine practitioner. Heather Richmond said “Teresa, the foods you’ve been eating are ‘damp.’ To treat the ‘dampness’ so that you’ll feel better, not only am I advising eliminating wheat from your diet, I’m also recommending eliminating soy as in tofu and corn.” No tofu and corn, in addition to no wheat?  Oh my.  Heather had explained that wheat, soy and corn are the top three most genetically-modified foods in this country.

Mrs. Nussbaum’s voice (my inner Wise Self) stepped into my head.  “Making a lifestyle change calls for perseverance. Go easy. Go gentle.  I’m proud of you.”

I tell my clients “Reach out, not stress out, when pursuing your dreams.” I too have been reaching out—by telling my friends about what I want—to feel energetic again. I will need their moral support (to cheer for me when I turn down a slice of bread, a fresh croissant or homemade pizza crust).

At a meeting, Linda Joy Myers, author of 3 books and founder of National Association of Memoir Writers, gave me delicious rice crackers, wild salmon, and green beans when she found out about my wheat intolerance. Thank you, LJM!

Thank you to all my friends and family members who are supportive of my goals!  My sister sent me a gift card for shopping sprees in “organic produce” aisles.  Thank you, Maria!

These books continue to be helpful as I want to live well in spite of food allergies:

  • Eating Gluten Free: Delicious Recipes and Essential Advice for Living Well Without Wheat and Other Problematic Grains by Shreve Stockton
  • Optimal Healing: A Guide to Traditional Chinese Medicine by Patricia Tsang, M.D.

Heather Richmond is recommending I stop eating rice in the next phase of treatment.  Oh oh . . .

I still want hugs from my mom.  I feel them.  Every morning and every night, in my prayers.  And I give hugs back. “Thank you my Main Angel.”

Lynn Henriksen aka The Story Woman, thank you so much for asking me to guest-blog. You’ve given me a lovely gift—a chance to talk about my mom, knowing what the protagonist wants, and how to reach out not stress out!  I cheer for you, your books, blog, and classes!

Sincerely,

Teresa LeYung-Ryan

Author, Writing Career Coach, Manuscript Consultant.

Teresa’s blog http://writingcoachteresa.com for resources.

Teresa uses Love Made of Heart to inspire adult children of mentally ill parents to speak openly about the stigmas and find resources for their families. (the novel is available in libraries, archived in the San Francisco History Center, and used by teachers in college and universities).

She’s also the author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW (a workbook to help writers of all genres gain a competitive edge before and after publication. Available as ebook too! Customers of the workbook are saying that it’s useful for anyone who has anything to promote.)

Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan says: "Reach out, not stress out, when pursuing your dreams."

***

Lynn Henriksen wrote: “Teresa – it was my pleasure placing your guest post on The Story Woman blog! Thank you for an interesting piece and for speaking from your heart as you always do.”

Kate Farrell, Wisdom Has a Voice wrote: “Teresa–What a great post that speaks to how writers think, yearn, and write for themselves, to connect and to share in a way that makes the world a community!”

Coach Teresa, what books are you reading this month?

Two weeks ago I reported to jury duty. Before leaving my house that morning to catch bus and BART, I went to my bookcases to look for volumes of Greek Tragedies (I’ve had those books since college days).

Why did I want to reread translations of Greek Tragedies? To study literary works that engaged me decades ago and have been in my memory since. In Greek Tragedies, oftentimes the villains are the parents, with help from the gods and goddesses. My studying these classics helps me gain  examples of plotline structuring and archetypes for my clients whose manuscripts carry similar themes–what if a family member is the wicked antagonist?

So, I re-read Aeschylus: The Libation Bearers (translated by Richmond Lattimore) and Sophocles: Electra (translated by David Greene), and, I’m re-reading Euripides: Iphigenia in Tauris (translated by Witter Bynner).

Did I get selected as a juror?  That is another story which I will tell later.

Liz Bittner just finished reading Barbara Kingsolver’s novel The Poisonwood Bible and she lent me her copy.  I am enjoying it immensely.

Writers, I’ve updated my post “Coach Teresa, what should I do before hiring an editor?”

Happy writing and rewriting!

Sincerely,

Teresa LeYung Ryan

Writing Career Coach; Manuscript Consultant; Author

of Love Made of  Heart; Author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days

 

 

This blog post is to encourage my clients and all the writers who are on their umpteenth rewrites.

When you’re writing a novel, a memoir, or any lengthy story, keeping track of the elements (plotlines, character arcs, archetypes, themes, hooks, foreshadows, metaphors, dialogue, front story, back story, internal monologue, exposition, irony) becomes a monumental task.

My analogy:  The elements in your story make up the pieces of a ten-thousand-piece puzzle.  Revising a piece of the puzzle could mean adjusting all the other pieces, especially when you’ve been rewriting and rewriting. Has your overall puzzle become a fuzzy picture?

Here’s my advice: Work in sections. Start with the first quarter of your story. Print your pages and read them out loud, chapter by chapter.  As you read, take notes; use color coding to track each element.  Example:  you might use yellow highlight to track your “hooks.”  Whatever method you choose to track, ask yourself these questions:  What’s my intent to introduce this hook?  Am I going to keep the reader engaged by re-baiting this hook in successive chapters?  At what point will I satisfy the reader by releasing the hook (delivering the “aha” moment)?

Happy rewriting and tracking!

I salute you!

Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan

author / manuscript consultant / writing career coach

author of Love Made of Heart (the story that inspires adult-children of mentally-ill parents to speak openly about the stigmas and to gain resources for their families)

author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW

http://writingcoachteresa.com

Motoko Rich’s article in The New York Times got me running to my bookshelves to look for my copy of The Portable Jung that was edited by Joseph Campbell. Jung’s text was translated by R.F.C. Hull.

On the same shelf is The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler–this book (about archetypes and stages of the hero’s journey) is one of the secret tools in my Writer’s Tool Box.

When I edit a manuscript, I always look for ways to help my client identify the archetypes in his/her story.  Memorable characters make for a good read.

Rich says that The Red Book is considered the Holy Grail by many Jungians. Speaking of the Holy Grail, I saw Angela Berquist, Ph.D. and her husband Michael Betts at the California Writers Club party in San Mateo this month.  Angela is the author of The Grail Reclaimed: A New View of An Old Symbol.


Motoko Rich’s article in The New York Times “Dreamy Sales of Jung Book Stir Analysis”
Published: December 24, 2009

Excerpts from Motoko Rich's article "Dreamy Sales of Jung Book Stir Analysis" in The New York Times

Excerpts from Motoko Rich's article "Dreamy Sales of Jung Book Stir Analysis" in The New York Times

Excerpts from the article:
As online and big-box retailers hustle to outdo themselves in discounts, “The Red Book” by Carl Jung, the Swiss psychiatrist and founder of analytical psychology, has surprised booksellers and its publisher, W. W. Norton & Company, by bucking the economy and becoming difficult, and in some cases impossible, to find in bookstores around the country.

“We were absolutely amazed,” said Elaine Petrocelli, an owner of Book Passage, an independent company with bookstores in San Francisco and suburban Corte Madera, Calif. “Here you have a $195 book in what’s supposed to be a bad time, and we have many, many orders for it. I think we have over 20 orders for it.”

The book is considered the Holy Grail by many Jungians, who for years had only heard rumors of its existence. For decades Jung’s descendants kept the original, leather-bound volume, which Jung worked on between 1912 and 1928, locked in a bank vault.

Full article on:  http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/25/books/25jung.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&ref=cm_dly_lnk

A related article in The New York Times
By SARA CORBETT

New Year’s approaching, new year to give your writing project a new look.

Ask me, Writing Coach Teresa, to edit 22 pages at a time.
Gain tools from my coaching with each installment of your manuscript. Affordable too.

Learn how to use  archetypes, themes/universal messages, metaphors, hooks, foreshadows, pivotal plot points, seamless transitions, and poignancy to make your story a page-turner.
I like to edit fiction and narrative non-fiction with strong and quirky protagonists, memoirs, young adult fiction, and short stories.

Visit http://WritingCoachTeresa.com home page to find out what it means when an agent or editor tells a writer that his/her story is episodic.

Writing Coach & Manuscript Consultant Teresa LeYung Ryan who helps writers 22 pages at a time.

Writing Coach & Manuscript Consultant Teresa LeYung Ryan who helps writers 22 pages at a time.

California Writers’ Club–SF Peninsula Branch Presents
“Build Your Name While You Write”
with Writing-Career Coach Teresa LeYung Ryan

January 16, 2010, 10am to noon
Belmont Library, 1110 Alameda De Las Pulgas, Belmont, CA
Cost: $15  CWC members;  $18 non-members

Reservations are advised:
Call 650-615-8331 to leave a message or email Chris Wachlin at <reservations@sfpeninsulawriters.com> with your name and the meeting date.

More info & PayPal available on:  http://cwc-peninsula.org

Can you relate to any one of these statements?

* Agents and acquisition editors say publishers prefer to work with authors who are already celebrities or have established platforms (i.e. means to build fan base).  How do I compete?

* I am published. There aren’t enough hours in a day to write, let alone run around and network.

* I believe in my writing and I’m committed to building my career, but, my budget is limited.

Optional exercises before January 16:  http://cwc-peninsula.org/

On January 16, 2010 Teresa will debut her guide Build Your Name, Beat the Game: Be Happily Published

Teresa LeYung Ryan’s bio:  http://WritingCoachTeresa.com

Teresa LeYung Ryan
http://www.WritingCoachTeresa.com

Career Coach for Writers

and

Manuscript Consultant

  • polish your manuscript by identifying the themes and archetypes;
  • market yourself to agents and publishers;
  • map out your career.

Teresa edits women’s fiction, mainstream fiction, memoirs, children’s and young adults’ fiction, and short stories.

Some comments from her clients:

Teresa is not only a lovely writer and a wonderful person, but also an enthusiastic, inspiring, and thorough mentor. Her far-reaching knowledge, networking expertise, and organization ensure that an aspiring writer will have the strongest foundation possible to launch him/herself on a successful career.Pat Windom

Teresa, . . because of you, the story has grown. You make me dig deeper and it brings more life to the story. E. Hartshorn

Teresa, . . . I even see myself succeeding and being put into print and making money with my writing ability. I am so grateful to you. D.Warner


Teresa LeYung Ryan is:

  • Member-at-Large at Women’s National Book Association-SF Chapter;
  • Past Co-Chair of Group Mentoring at California Writers Club-San Francisco Peninsula Branch;
  • Past President of California Writers Club-San Francisco Peninsula Branch;
  • a 2004 recipient of the Jack London Award for her services to California Writers Club;
  • Speaker and instructor.

Teresa LeYung Ryan uses her mother-daughter novel Love Made of Heart to advocate compassion for mental illness and to help survivors of family violence find their own voices.

In Love Made of Heart, protagonist Ruby Lin is forced to look into her past when her mother shuts down her own painful world. The story explores the complex bonds between mothers and daughters, the choices we make when our hearts are broken, and the choices we make when our hearts are healed.

  • archived at the San Francisco History Center;
  • recommended by the California School Library Association;
  • recommended by the California Reading Association;
  • used in Advanced Composition English-as-a-Second-Language classes.

www.LoveMadeOfHeart.com

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