Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 113, more introductions how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

25 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 113, more introductions how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the storyline?

I left up the example for the first scene plot outline from before.  This outline is how I develop a scene in my mind.  Once I have the scene outline, I can write the storyline.  If you note, the plot outline comes directly out of the theme and the storyline comes directly out of the plot outline.  So here is the outline–then how do you write the storyline?

Scene 1 (for this example): Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night
George and Heidi arrive late
George and Heidi meet Sveta and Daniel
Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder)
Heidi seeks a way to break off the confrontation
Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release)

First you set the scene.  Then you set the characters in the scene.  Then introductions.  Not every scene will have introductions, but most with characters will have some type of introduction.  If it is just a greeting or a “good morning.”  I’m trying to make this simple for those of you who are just starting and I’m giving a way to measure your writing if you are more experienced.  So, here is an example from the scene above:

The room was not filled with people, but at least fifteen couples stood in the space. Buffet tables filled with food and drink were under the stairs. A quartet at the left side played Christmas music and classics. Harold, the butler, led Heidi and George toward a handsome middle-aged couple at the side. The man was medium height and shorter than George. His hair was light brown and his features were fine but nondescript. He had a very pleasant face with a few wrinkles–most seemed to grace his eyes and lips as though he was used to smiling.

The woman was slight, petite and exquisitely beautiful. Her skin was the color of cappuccino. Her hair was black, long, and silky. Her eyes, more appropriate on an Egyptian tomb painting were large and brown and exotic. She seemed to have an almost timeless look, but slight wrinkles marked her eyes and lips in almost the same measure as the man—as though they had known many of the same joys and sorrows.

The butler stepped to the side, “Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Long, may I present Mr. George Mardling and his niece Ms. Heidi Mardling.”

Mrs. Long stepped forward and put her hand out to Heidi. She had a very bright smile on her face. She took Heidi’s hand and her eyes went wide. Heidi released her hand immediately. Mrs. Long was breathless. She stammered a little, “Good evening. I’m Sveta Long.”

Heidi made a deep curtsy, “Thank you very much, Mrs. Long for inviting us to your party.”

Sveta reached out to Heidi again. Heidi stepped back, but Sveta connected with Heidi’s shoulder. Sveta froze, and her head came up. She stammered again, “You are very welcome. Make yourself comfortable in our home,” but her face clearly said exactly the opposite.

Heidi glanced in Sveta’s eyes, then quickly turned her head away, “What I really need is a glass of sweet wine.”

Sveta looked like she was about to say something, but she lowered her head and stepped back.

Heidi sighed.

Daniel’s lips twitched, “I’m not sure what is going on, exactly.” He grabbed George’s hand and shook it, “Good to see you back in England, old man.”

George forced a smile, “I’m glad to be back. I’m looking for a new assignment as soon as possible.”

We begin with scene setting and character descriptions.  Those descriptions move directly into the introductions.  The storyline must always start with setting and that means descriptions.  This takes scene writing to its simplest.  Set the scene.  Scene setting is fist about the time and place and second about the characters.  Many inexperienced writers seem to miss this very critical step and try to launch directly into dialog or action.  You can’t have a stage play without first setting the scene (actually in empty stage, people try, but that’s why it is an experimental and rare method of presenting plays).  Let’s put it this way, your readers can only see what you describe.  If you don’t give them anything, their palate is blank.  You must provide the stage and the setting of the stage.  You must describe the characters (even on an empty stage, you can see the characters).

Once you have the stage, time, and characters set, you then begin the interactions in the scene.  If the scene is mainly dialog, you will likely have introductions or greetings.  This is normal human interaction.  This is perhaps one of the places inexperienced writers first slip up.  There is a lot of pressure and excitement in getting directly to the point, but that never happens in real life and sounds somewhat silly in a novel.  Human interaction always follows some degree of social lubrication.  “Good morning…,” or “Let me introduce…,” or “This is….”  You can’t have human interaction in dialog without this natural social lubrication.  To do so is more than a faux pas, is it unthinkable.  This also allows the writer to build naturally into the conversation (dialog).  Notice how I work this in the example scene from Valeska.  The butler provides the necessary introduction.  This introduction is necessary because the reader and the characters must be introduced to these new characters.  Then begins the social dance.

I use this opportunity to begin to build the tension in the scene.  The moment Sveta and Heidi touch each other, they recognize there is something meaningfully different about the other.  The reader knows this about Heidi, but how can Sveta know?  Immediately, this provides the direction of the scene and the conversation.  What is there to say?  Obviously, the characters are locked in the social dance.  Nothing of significance can be spoken here.  Remember, I wrote before, that if you can get your characters into a safe environment for conversation, you can reveal all kinds of wonderful things (through their lips).  Likewise, when they are in an unsafe environment, nothing can be said of consequence.  This is such a situation.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 112, introductions how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

24 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 112, introductions how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the storyline?

I left up the example for the first scene plot outline from before.  This outline is how I develop a scene in my mind.  Once I have the scene outline, I can write the storyline.  If you note, the plot outline comes directly out of the theme and the storyline comes directly out of the plot outline.  So here is the outline–then how do you write the storyline?

Scene 1 (for this example): Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night
George and Heidi arrive late
George and Heidi meet Sveta and Daniel
Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder)
Heidi seeks a way to break off the confrontation
Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release)

First you set the scene.  Then you set the characters in the scene.  Then introductions.  Not every scene will have introductions, but most with characters will have some type of introduction.  If it is just a greeting or a “good morning.”  I’m trying to make this simple for those of you who are just starting and I’m giving a way to measure your writing if you are more experienced.

From my experience, I’ve found a lot of writers have problems with putting scenes together–that is in writing cohesive scenes that don’t sound contrived or stilted.  Every successfully written scene goes through the same basics: setting, characters, introductions, conversation, developing tension, release, output.  Not to say there are modifications or potential ways scenes are shortened.  All scenes must have developing tension and release (of some type).  All scenes must have a setting (and be set).  All scenes must have an output.  All scenes usually have a character or characters.  I mean, we are writing about characters here, not usually wildlife.  In fact, the wildlife could be your characters.  I remember a bestseller about rabbits called Watership Down… I think that was the title.

The point is this.  You can break a scene down into these simple elements and write to them.  I’m not trying to say that writing the storyline is simple.  I think writing storyline is exhilarating and fun.  I get a kick out of having all the elements come together into a cohesive whole that is a finished scene.  There are scenes I have written that I remember specifically, as well done and fun to read.  They are usually pivotal scenes in my novels.  That is the overall goal–to write a scene that has power and conveys the theme and plot.  I’ll continue with introductions.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 111, character setting how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

23 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 111, character setting how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the storyline?

I left up the example for the first scene plot outline from before.  This outline is how I develop a scene in my mind.  Once I have the scene outline, I can write the storyline.  If you note, the plot outline comes directly out of the theme and the storyline comes directly out of the plot outline.  So here is the outline–then how do you write the storyline?

Scene 1 (for this example):
Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night
George and Heidi arrive late
George and Heidi meet Sveta and Daniel
Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder)
Heidi seeks a way to break off the confrontation
Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release)

First you write the setting–this is the key in any scene.  The setting is simply description, so all you have to do is make it a standard creative writing exercise.  The next step is the characters.  Here’s what I did with this scene:

The room was not filled with people, but at least fifteen couples stood in the space. Buffet tables filled with food and drink were under the stairs. A quartet at the left side played Christmas music and classics. Harold, the butler, led Heidi and George toward a handsome middle-aged couple at the side. The man was medium height and shorter than George. His hair was light brown and his features were fine but nondescript. He had a very pleasant face with a few wrinkles–most seemed to grace his eyes and lips as though he was used to smiling.

The woman was slight, petite and exquisitely beautiful. Her skin was the color of cappuccino. Her hair was black, long, and silky. Her eyes, more appropriate on an Egyptian tomb painting were large and brown and exotic. She seemed to have an almost timeless look, but slight wrinkles marked her eyes and lips in almost the same measure as the man—as though they had known many of the same joys and sorrows.

The butler stepped to the side, “Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Long, may I present Mr. George Mardling and his niece Ms. Heidi Mardling.”

You get a piece of the scene setting and then the character setting.  I don’t need to give you any special character setting for George and Heidi, they are already known to the reader.  If anything, the description of their clothing, at the very beginning of the scene, is sufficient.  The new characters need to be introduced (described).  This is also a typical creative writing exercise.  That’s how you should approach it.  Scene setting and character setting.  The next step is the introductions.  I gave you a bit of it already.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 110, even more how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

22 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 110, even more how to develop Storyline, Entertaining, Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the storyline?

I left up the example for the first scene plot outline from before.  This outline is how I develop a scene in my mind.  Once I have the scene outline, I can write the storyline.  If you note, the plot outline comes directly out of the theme and the storyline comes directly out of the plot outline.  So here is the outline–then how do you write the storyline?

Scene 1 (for this example): Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night
George and Heidi arrive late
George and Heidi meet Sveta and Daniel
Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder)
Heidi seeks a way to break off the confrontation
Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release)

I wrote the setting from the plot outline.  I have written before that everything comes out of the original theme development for the novel.  I gave you an example about the Lyons house to show you how the development led to the place setting.  This is critically important information–that is if you really want to write a good novel.  You might imagine that an author just describes some place…and there it is.  I’ve mentioned before, I develop the places, the characters, everything before I write about them.  I’ve also mentioned that I like to use real or historical places.  Lyons house is not a real place, but it is a developed place based on history and real houses of it’s type.

Characters are the same way.  I went through a very detailed explanation of how I developed the characters for this novel.  Once the character is developed, I can write about them.  The point is the depth of character and the dimensional power of the setting is directly dependent on the development.  The point is to develop first and then you can write meaningful and powerful settings from your plot outline.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 109, more how to develop Plot, Entertaining, Storyline Rising Action

21 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 109, more how to develop Plot, Entertaining, Storyline Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the plot?

I left up the example for the first scene plot outline from yesterday.  This outline is how I develop a scene in my mind.  Once I have the scene outline, I can write the storyline.  If you note, the plot outline comes directly out of the theme and the storyline comes directly out of the plot outline.  So there is the outline–then how do you write the storyline?

Scene 1 (for this example): Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night George and Heidi arrive late George and Heidi meet Sveta and Daniel Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder) Heidi seeks a way to break off the confrontation Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release)

First, let me explain, to me, the storyline is the actual writing.  If you take the storyline in steps, it is easy to write a scene.  First, set the scene.  In the plot outline, I gave a setting, the job of the writer is now to set the scene.  Here is the setting:

At 1900 on Friday, 19 December George and Heidi stood in front of the Lyons House. Two new stone lions sat at either side of the very large oak door. The house the door fronted was large and beautiful. Its facing was stone and brick in the emperor style. It looked very old. George wore a suit and an inexpensive Christmas tie. Heidi wore a very frilly white dress that had red and green panels on the skirt and the top. She wore a jaunty beret that was made of the same white lace, red, and green material as the dress. It was a warm enough evening that they didn’t require their coats. The ground was wet, but the rain had stopped earlier in the afternoon.

This is easy peasy stuff.  This is the kind of creative writing your teachers hopefully beat into you.  Describe the place, the time, the weather, the characters.  Give us some information so the reader can picture the setting and the scene.  You are placing the scene in the mind of your readers.  Then move your characters into the scene.

A young looking butler opened the door to them, “Good evening. I’m Harold, the butler. May I announce you?”

George proffered his invitation, “George Mardling and my niece Heidi Mardling.”

The butler smiled, “The receiving line just ended. Please follow me.”

They stepped through the door and the butler closed it after them. Harold stepped ahead of them. Heidi whispered to George, “Did you time our arrival to intentionally miss the receiving line?”

George grinned behind his hand, “I don’t have to give up all my trade secrets, do I?”

The butler led them down the hallway off the foyer. It opened into a classical large ballroom with twin staircases at the back. The interior was made of dark and ancient wood. The rugs were Turkish and slightly ragged. Heidi cocked her head, “A very wealthy and old family.”

George smiled back, “Perhaps.”

Here is more scene setting and movement of the characters into the place.  Of course a fancy house like this has a butler.  Of course the butler will expect you to have a card and be announced.  I also put in a little banter between Heidi and George.  George is a real expert at these kinds of parties, he times the receiving line.  I also put in some very delicate description about the scene.  If you don’t get it, that’s okay.  An old and wealthy family will have old and ragged rugs.  They have been in the family a long time.  George knows this is not true, but unless the reader has read my other books, she won’t know about this house.

The Lyons house was a named Tudor house that belongs to the organization.  It originally belonged to Lord and Lady Hastings, but they gave the house to Bruce and Matilda Lyons when they married.  Matilda Lyons was originally Matilda Hastings.  When Bruce and Matilda died, they gifted the house to the organization and now the current head, Daniel Long lives there with Sveta Long.  All this is back story, the reader doesn’t need to know this, but I’m sharing it with you.  The next step is to bring in the next set of characters.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 108, how to develop Plot, Entertaining, Storyline Rising Action

20 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 108, how to develop Plot, Entertaining, Storyline Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the plot?

The entire plot of the scene(s) I showed you were developed around the idea of tension and release as related to the theme of the novel.  Each scene or section of the overall scene included a tension and release idea that was then fleshed out in the storyline.  The plot outline might look something like this:

Scene 1 (for this example): Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night
George and Heidi arrive late
George and Heidi meet Sveta and Daniel
Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder)
Heidi seeks a way to break off the confrontation
Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release)

Scene 2: at the Party near the buffet table
Heidi and George argue about the confrontation with Sveta (tension builder)
Harold, the butler, brings wine to Heidi and helps with the buffet (release)
Heidi and George settle into an uneasy cease fire

Scene 3: at the Party
Daniel and George converse concerning the confrontation between Heidi and Sveta
Daniel makes arrangements with George for a business meeting
Heidi has disappeared (tension builder)

Scene 4: during the party, sunroom at the Lyons House
Harold, the butler, takes Heidi to the sunroom
Sveta serves tea
Sveta explains about Stele
Sveta tells Heidi who she is
Sveta wants to know what/who Heidi is (tension builder)
Heidi will not tell her
Sveta explains she has someone she wants to speak to Heidi
Sveta swears not to harm Heidi or George (release)
Heidi leaves

In this plot outline of the scenes, you note only the high points and specific points are listed.  Each scene starts with a setting and the outline proceeds from that.  If you review the writing, the scene is first set and then we move into the dialog and actions of the scene.

What may not be clear in each scene outline is the tension builders of the scene.  That’s why I added that in the outline.  I also listed the release.  When I outline a scene, I usually don’t go to this detail.  Here is the detail I use for myself:

Scene 1 (for this example): Christmas party at Lyons House 19 December 2014, damp night
Heidi and Sveta have a confrontation based on contact (tension builder)
Daniel restrains Sveta, Heidi removes George (release) (output)

Scene 2: at the Party near the buffet table
Heidi and George argue about the confrontation with Sveta (tension builder)
Harold, the butler, brings wine to Heidi and helps with the buffet (release) (output)

Scene 3: at the Party
Daniel and George converse concerning the confrontation between Heidi and Sveta
Daniel makes arrangements with George for a business meeting
Heidi has disappeared (tension builder) (output)

Scene 4: during the party, sunroom at the Lyons House
Harold, the butler, takes Heidi to the sunroom
Sveta explains about Stele
Sveta tells Heidi who she is
Sveta wants to know what/who Heidi is (tension builder)
Heidi will not tell her
Sveta explains she has someone she wants to speak to Heidi
Sveta swears not to harm Heidi or George (release)
Heidi leaves (output)

There is only a slight difference.  The point I wanted to make is that you don’t need a lot of details in a scene outline.  What you need is the tension builder and a potential release.  As you write the storyline for the scene, you might find these change slightly.  Note in the second outline, I put the outputs to the scene.  The output becomes the next scene implied or direct input.  Since these four scenes (a set) are directly related input to output in time sequence, it isn’t hard to see how they fit into each other.

Once you have a theme and begin to develop you plot, you can outline your scenes as a plot and then write them (storyline).

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 107, yet more example developing Plot, Entertaining, Storyline Rising Action

19 October 2014, Writing Ideas – Vampire Novel, part 107, yet more example developing Plot, Entertaining, Storyline Rising Action

Announcement: My novel Aegypt will be republished in a second edition, and the follow-on novels, Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness will be published soon after.  Before that, all three novels will come out in a single book called Ancient Light.  I’ll keep you updated.

Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.

I’m using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I’ll keep you informed along the way.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:

1. Don’t confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don’t show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

All novels have five discrete parts:
1.  The initial scene (the beginning)
2.  The rising action
3.  The climax
4.  The falling action
5.  The dénouement

The theme statement of my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.

Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:

I decided on a white cover style.  You can see more at www.GoddessofDarkness.com.

The plot is developed directly from the theme.  The first steps are fleshing out the characters (not accomplished in the novel, but before writing the novel) and the setting.  The main characters and the setting come directly out of the theme.  The characters are revealed through the storyline that is based on the plot.  Then how do you get to the plot?

This is the part of the scene or collection of scenes where we finally get a true release of tension.  It is not a complete release–there should not be a complete release of tension until the climax of the novel.  In most cases, the climax itself is not a total release of the tension in the novel.  In many novels, there is never a complete release of the tension.  In other words, the storyline does not have a complete resolution.  Not all strings are wrapped up in the novel.  In complex novels, this is almost always true.  This is because the many threads of the storyline continue before and after the novel climax.  On the other hand, the theme must resolve in a tension resolution of some type and the plot must resolve.

If you remember, we began with a scene where Heidi and Sveta first meet and recognize they are both unusual beings.  In the second scene Heidi and George had a small fight.  In the third scene, Daniel and George confer and George discovers that Heidi has disappeared.

Heidi held a glass of wine in her hand and followed Harold. Harold stopped at a closed door, “Ms. Mardling, this is the sunroom. Mrs. Long is waiting for you within.” Harold opened the door for her and bowed.

Heidi didn’t stagger too much as she stepped through the door. It shut behind her.

The room was very brightly lit. Sveta sat in a padded chair next to the center of the room. In front of her was a love seat, and on the other side, a matching padded chair. In between the seats was a tea table.

Sveta stood. She didn’t move an inch toward Heidi, “Thank you very much for being willing to meet with me. I’m afraid we got off on the wrong foot…”

Heidi curtsied. She didn’t lower her eyes, and she didn’t dare take her eyes off Sveta.

Sveta stretched out her hand, “Would you please take a seat. I have tea.”

Heidi pursed her lips tightly together. She stepped deliberately to the other padded chair and stood behind it.

Sveta nodded her head, “You see, there is a table between us. I won’t try to touch you again.” Sveta sat down and put out her hand.

Heidi sat quickly. She set her wine glass on the table.

“May I serve you tea?”

Heidi nodded.

Sveta poured the tea and pushed the cup and saucer toward Heidi. After Sveta had pulled her hand completely back, Heidi with her eyes on Sveta, reached forward and took the cup and saucer. She held her cup and waited.

Sveta poured her tea. No one moved for a while. Finally, flustered, Sveta took a sip of tea. Heidi kept her eyes on Sveta—she took a quick sip.

Sveta sat back a little, “Ah, I see…” She steepled her hands, “Your dress is lovely. You have very good taste.”

Heidi sipped her tea again, “Taste slightly out of time…”

“Yes, slightly out of time. I really do not desire to antagonize you. I wonder exactly why…”

“You wonder why my presence unnerves you…”

“Yes, I wonder very much…and I would like to know why. What is it about you…?”

Heidi frowned, “It might be better for both of us if you do not know…”

“That thought never crossed my mind…”

“It has not left my thoughts since we were first introduced…”

Sveta sighed, “Listen, Ms. Mardling, let me lay my cards on the table.”

Heidi nodded, but didn’t lower her eyes.

“I recognize you are a being of spiritual dimensions. I myself am such a being.”

“I know. Does Mr. Long realize—that is about you?”

“Yes. Does George realize about you?”

“I should lie and say no, but I will say this…officially, Mr. Mardling doesn’t know anything about it at all…”

“Then he does know… but I am not to tell my husband about it. I understand. I will not say anything to him.”

“Never…”

“I will not tell anyone…I am very good at keeping secrets.”

Heidi scowled, “You are not very discreet at hiding your emotions…”

Sveta put up her hands, “I understand. I was just surprised. The last thing I expected to find was a being like you at my Christmas party.”

Heidi took a deep breath, “I admit, I was not at my best. I upset Mr. Mardling and your guests. Additionally, I was petulant. I apologize. You were very tolerant of my behavior when I was childish.”

“You are not a child. I realize that.”

“I am not a child.”

Sveta took another deep breath, “Can you tell me who you are?”

“Your cards are on the table—not mine.”

“I understand.” She sighed, “I am an unbound goddess. I lead the Stele branch of ‘the organization’.”

Heidi stared, “What exactly does this Stele office do?”

“Chiefly, we use spiritual means to protect Britain.”

Heidi visibly relaxed.

Sveta put her hands up, “I only wish to know more about you, but there is a scent.”

Heidi’s eye twitched, “The scent of blood and the grave?”

“Yes…”

Heidi folded her arms.

“Will you please tell me what kind of being you are?”

“No.”

“I see. If you are worried, we follow the One named יהוה.” The sound reverberated like a rushing wind about the room.

Heidi covered her ears. Her eyes flashed, “Why did you have to say that Name?”

“I won’t say it again. You have not bowed your neck to Him?”

“I was already broken by that Guy.”

Sveta’s brow creased, “I…I don’t understand. I have never heard of such a thing. Please tell me who you are. I’d be happy to help any way I can.”

Heidi’s voice rose, “You can’t help me. No one can help me.”

“I don’t believe that is true.”

“Then you don’t know everything do you?”

Sveta was getting a little hot, “If you tell me who you are, we can move forward from there. If you simply bow your neck to Him, we can work together.”

“I lay with my face on the ground broken by Him and without any hope of redemption…”

“I know that is not true…”

Heidi rose to her feet, “It is truth.”

“If you know about Him and you are convinced, you must have hope…I believe this is truth.”

Heidi stood, “I believe, we have nothing else to speak about…”

Sveta held out her hands, “Please, Ms. Mardling…don’t go. I promise, as long as you don’t oppose us, we will help you…”

“You don’t understand…”

Sveta took a deep breath, “I want to understand. Please tell me who you are…”

“I will not… if I do…if I do,” Heidi’s chest was heaving.

“Please…, I know someone you will want to talk to.”

Heidi backed around the chair. She kept Sveta at her front.

Sveta sighed, “You don’t need to fear me. I promise–I’ll not attack you. I think we can still work together to the same ends.”

Heidi perked up, “Do you truly promise?”

“I do… I do promise, by the last and all.” The air crackled in the room.

Heidi smiled, “You may regret that you ever made such a promise, but I do accept it. I can’t handle anything more tonight. I thank you for your hospitality.” She backed to the door. When Heidi touched the door handle, Harold opened the door from the other side. Heidi curtsied and ran through the opening.

Now you see what all the excitement was about.  Heidi is a vampire.  These others in Stele follow the being (God) who broke her.  One could state that Heidi broke His laws and became what she is.  This is all backstory the reader learned about Heidi’s life and death before.  In any case, the tension that was developed previously has not been completely released.  There is still tension between Sveta and Heidi.  Heidi still has her secret.  There is now a new tension.  Sveta knows now that George Mardling was lying.  He knows about Heidi.  The reader might wonder what this could portend for George.  There is a further issue that was revealed: Sveta wants Heidi to speak to a certain someone.  This is a new element to build into another scene.  In fact, the next scenes begin to introduce this new character.  The near final tension release in this scene is the swearing.  Sveta swore an oath to Heidi.  This should have reduced the tension somewhat.  The final release is Heidi’s response.  Once she had a promise, she could leave.  For her, she had repaired the evening the best she could.

This entire sequence goes back to what I mentioned before, once I can get two opposed characters together in conversation, I can really develop the novel.  I can give the readers a great deal of information without telling and through showing.  I can reveal and inform.  I can show the readers what the characters are thinking.  I can develop incredible tension or release that tension.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/
http://www.aegyptnovel.com/
http://www.centurionnovel.com
http://www.thesecondmission.com/
http://www.theendofhonor.com/
http://www.thefoxshonor.com
http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

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