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Posts posted by Angelo

  1. Living in Saint’s Hood

    1.       Story statement

    a.       The mission of the novel’s protagonist is to discover, regardless of consequences, the identity of the person who has murdered his best friend.

    2.       Antagonist sketch

    a.       The inner city is controlled by urban gangs, each with its own clearly delineated boundaries. While attempting to discover who killed his friend, the protagonist violates the one central tenet of the inner city – crossing established boundaries. Considered an implicit act of war, it’s compounded by the protagonist’s unintentional killing of a rival gang member. This breach of established protocol not only paints a target on the protagonist’s back, but also draws his fellow gang members into a situation they did not ask for and do not want.

    3.       Breakout title

    a.       Option 1 – Living in Saint’s Hood

    b.       Option 2 – A Tale of Saints and Bloods

    c.       Option 3 – TJ’s Dead

    4.       Identify Comparable Authors/Titles

    a.       Living in Saint’s Hood is comparable to Donald Goines novel Inner City Hoodlum, a work that tells the story of a character seeking vengeance on behalf of one they have loved and lost. Set in the inner city, it reveals how the environment and culture in which one is raised influences one’s thoughts, emotions and actions.

    b.       Living in Saint’s Hood also has echoes of Streets Have No Kings by Jaquavis Coleman, who tells the story of two men fighting for ascendancy within their narrowly confined world. The prize the men struggle for is small (and contrasted against the larger world) and insignificant, for the main characters, this small piece of something is everything to them both.

    5.       Hook Line

    a.       There are rumors aplenty as to why TJ was murdered, but Marlon doesn’t want to hear them. He wants to know and nothing – not his wife, the police, or even a rival gang – is going to stand in his way.

    6.       Sketch the inner conditions for the protagonist’s inner conflict

    a.       The primary conflict in Living in Saint’s Hood is the protagonist’s quest to find out who murdered his best friend. In order to do so, he must flaunt norms that put him at odds with the other members of his crew and the culture of the inner city in which he lives.

    b.       The secondary conflict is the unspoken, though ingrained, treatment of women. Expected to be loyal and subservient to the men in their lives, they fight for a measure of respect and dignity in the face of almost insurmountable odds.

    7.       Setting

    a.       The time is now; the setting Brooklyn, New York. In a borough filled with a diversity of racial and ethnic identities, urban gangs have established individual areas of influence, which are jealously (and ruthlessly) guarded. As the novel progresses, the reader learns that geography is just as important a character as is the protagonist or any of the secondary characters. The urban setting, its culture, and its unwritten, but nevertheless inviolate, rules determine how the characters act and respond to the events in their lives.

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