Daniel Schwabauer

Daniel Schwabauer, MA in creative writing, University Kansas, is the creator of The One Year Adventure Novel and Cover Story Writing, writing curriculum designed for homeschool students. Once asked if he would like to be the next C.S. Lewis, Mr. S.—as he is called by his students—replied, “I’d rather train a thousand C.S. Lewises.”

Runt the Brave and Runt the Hunted, his young adult novels, have received numerous awards, including the 2005 Ben Franklin Award for Best New Voice in Children’s Literature and the 2008 Eric Hoffer Award. The final book in the trilogy, The Curse of the Seer, released with AMG Publishers in 2015.

His professional work includes stage plays, radio scripts, short stories, newspaper columns, non-fiction ghost-writing, comic books and scripting for the PBS animated series Auto-B-Good.

He is editor of Crosswind Comics, where he develops educational materials for youth-at-risk and prison inmates, among them the Amazing True Life Stories series as well as The Amazing Gospel graphic novel, which has been translated into several languages around the world.

Guild Workshops

No One Is Above the Five Elements of Story
What makes a story a story? We have to approach storytelling through the eyes of the audience first rather than through our own passion for experimentation or the urgency of a cause. Before the inciting incident—before the lights even dim—our viewers are expecting something: the five elements of story. Without all five, their investment isn’t meaningful and fulfilling, and we lose too.

Building Conflict to Withstand Assault
Many Christian storytellers fail to incorporate realistic and compelling story conflict. The conflict we do see in Christian stories is often superficial, unmotivated and predictable. It invites attack instead of reflection. In this session we will discuss how to layer conflict, building in internal and external forces of opposition that both derive from the characters themselves. We’ll also look at how to incorporate a third element of contrast to add texture and complexity to our characters and situations.

Four Layers of Meaning: Theme and Ideal Done Right
Christian stories often approach theme and ideal backwards. The western church uses allegories when we should be using parables—as Jesus did. But we don’t, because we don’t understand how meaning impacts an audience’s participation in the story. As a result, moviegoers often interact with the themes of Christian films only superficially. The solution is to explore theme through the four layers of meaning: symbol, motion, context and relevance.