Home Forums Circularity RANDY OLSON: SESSION 2.7: “The ABT in Science"

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      Randy Olson

      RANDY OLSON: SESSION 2.7: “The ABT in Science”


      Kim Tenggardjaja:
      Does Randy have some suggestions on how to move the ABT out of the elevator pitch mode and into lengthier formats?

      Lengthier formats are not about using a template. This is where you have to have NARRATIVE INTUITION. When you get to longer material (and actually, even in a one paragraph abstract or synopsis) you have to be able to just feel the three forces at work of agreement, contradiction and consequence.

      Carol Luukkonen:
      So I have a question about writing. Can you use an AB, AB, AB, AB form then follow up with a T that wraps it up or is better to have smaller ABT sections?

      One word answer: INTUITION

      The more you work with the ABT, the more of an artist you’ll become with it — able to paint narrative from your own intuition, rather than “painting by numbers.” At that point, anything is possible. Seriously. There are no absolute rules, just guidelines.

      Albertha Joseph-Alexander to everyone:
      Reposting my question for clarity When you use the if/then, must a but statement follow? Or is it that the but statement is implied and you can move straight to the therefore section?

      Same answer as above — no rules — only, hopefully, eventually INTUITION.

      TOO MUCH “BUT”?

      This is a leftover question from a few classes ago, but I was wondering if there’s more info (like in the Randy’s book) about narrative index. What’s the ideal? How does it match up with the ideal “and” proportion? When is there too much “but”?

      As far as I can tell, there is no point of “too much but” if you know what you’re doing.

      Here’s a good exercise for you — take a detailed ABT look at Richard Nixon’s first inaugural address. It has the highest BUT/AND ratio of any speech I’ve been able to find. Read through it and note the BUTs and the ABT structure. It was a powerful speech, from an eventual madman.



      Also Park wrote this great review of it on his Facebook page:


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