Book Spotlight: Meet Nancy Ellen Dodd, Author of The Writer’s Compass


Date: Thursday, January 26, 2012
Time: 10:00 A.M.
Duration: 30 minutes

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How do you tell the story you want to tell and capture your audience’s heart? Regardlessof genre or format, to tell your story effectively you must fi rst sort through all the ideas you’ve been toying with—organize them, whip them into shape, and turn them into great writing.

The Writer’s Compass is here to show you the way. This guide to better writing teaches you to visualize your story’s progress by creating a story map that helps you see all the different components of your story, where these components are going, and, perhaps most importantly, what key components are missing.

You’ll learn to:

  • develop your ideas into a finished story by working through your writing in 7 thoughtful stages
  • evaluate and improve your work by mapping out your story’s progress and structure
  • assess your story’s strengths and weaknesses so you can write the story you want to tell

Whether you’re writing a novel, a short story, a play, or a screenplay, the 7 stage approach of The Writers Compass allows you to focus on one aspect of your story at a time—including forming and developing ideas, building strong structures, creating vibrant characters, and structuring scenes and transitions.

The path of a writer isn’t always easy. Let The Writer’s Compass be your north star by simplifying a wealth of writing advice into easily applicable concepts that will help you improve your craft.


Nancy Ellen Dodd is a writer with many voices, a university instructor, and an editor. She received her master’s in Professional Writing (MPW, which is a multi-discipline approach to writing) from the University of Southern California with a concentration in dramatic writing/screenwriting and her MFA in playwriting at USC’s School of Theatre. Having studied writing for more than 25 years, Dodd currently teaches screenwriting at Pepperdine University for undergraduate and graduate students. Dodd has received numerous awards for her writing and studied with several successful, award-winning writers. Currently on faculty at the Graziadio School of Business at Pepperdine University, Dodd serves as academic editor of the “Graziadio Business Review.”


The Writer’s Compass Website

Nancy Ellen Dodd’s Blog

Nancy Ellen Dodd’s Facebook Page

Nancy Ellen Dodd’s LinkedIn Profile


The Writer’s Compass is available at the following online locations:

Barnes & Noble



Powell’s Books