August 2, 2022
by Samantha Hoffman
The Bear is the hot show that’s getting Hulu a ton of new subscribers. Deservedly so. Is it perfect? No, especially the first few episodes, but it hits its stride, and the season ends with great emotion as you cheer for these characters.
You can get a free month on Hulu and watch it that way, or you can subscribe for only $6.99/month. It’s cheaper than an MFA. Watch it for enjoyment once, and then watch it again, like I did, to study the fundamentals of good storytelling.
(For the record there’s other great programming on Hulu. No, I’m not getting a commission.)
Storytelling Tips from The Bear:
Emotion is woven in slowly
Each character has a distinct personality and character arc
Each character has his/her own goal
Every important event is foreshadowed early in the story
Everything is NOT explained in the first episode - there are enough questions to keep you going
Every small item that comes up in the story, even if it doesn’t seem important at the time, is used later in the story
A few words can be the most impactful
There is conflict in every episode
There are peaks and valleys in the emotion
All the characters change in the course of the story
The importance of setting: The kitchen is its own character; its size and how it feels chaotic and claustrophobic. And it is set in Chicago. We Chicagoans love those scenes, which serve to ground the story in the grittiness of the city.
Writer, editor, artist, personal assistant, private chef, runner (8-time marathoner), film and theatre buff, traveler… Author of What More Could You Wish For (St. Martin’s Press).
V.P. of the Chicago Writers Association, Executive Director of Let’s Just Write! An Uncommon Writers Conference.
Visit me at www.samanthahoffman.com
Read my latest short story, Only One Syllable, published by Hypertext Magazine.
Agents and Publishers
Write City Magazine
Write City Review
Windy City Reviews
Book of the Year
First Chapter Contest
Chicago Writers Association
Make a Difference!