22 August 2019, Writing – part x873, Writing a Novel, Changing World and more Scientific Truth
Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment. I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher. More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com. Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.
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 withhttp://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.
The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:
- Don’t confuse your readers.
- Entertain your readers.
- Ground your readers in the writing.
- Don’t show (or tell) everything.
4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.
- Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.
These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:
- Design the initial scene
- Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
- Research as required
- Develop the initial setting
- Develop the characters
- Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
- Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
- Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
- Write the climax scene
- Write the falling action scene(s)
- Write the dénouement scene
I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective. The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.
Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.
The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja. I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective. I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.
How to begin a novel. Number one thought, we need an entertaining idea. I usually encapsulate such an idea with a theme statement. Since I’m writing a new novel, we need a new theme statement. Here is an initial cut.
For novel 30: Red Sonja, a Soviet spy, infiltrates the X-plane programs at Edwards AFB as a test pilot’s administrative clerk, learns about freedom, and is redeemed.
For novel 31: Deirdre and Sorcha are redirected to French finishing school where they discover difficult mysteries, people, and events.
Here is the scene development outline:
- Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
- Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
- Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
- Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
- Write the release
- Write the kicker
Today: Why don’t we go back to the basics and just writing a novel? I can tell you what I do, and show you how I go about putting a novel together. We can start with developing an idea then move into the details of the writing.
To start a novel, I picture an initial scene. I may start from a protagonist or just launch into mental development of an initial scene. I get the idea for an initial scene from all kinds of sources. To help get the creative juices flowing, let’s look at the initial scene.
- Meeting between the protagonist and the antagonist or the protagonist’s helper
- Action point in the plot
- Buildup to an exciting scene
- Indirect introduction of the protagonist
The protagonist is the novel and the initial scene. If you look at the four basic types of initial scenes, you see the reflection of the protagonist in each one. If you noticed my examples yesterday, I expressed the scene idea, but none were completely independent of the protagonist. Indeed, in most cases, I get an idea with a protagonist. The protagonist is incomplete, but a sketch to begin with. You can start with a protagonist, but in my opinion, as we see above, the protagonist is never completely independent from the initial scene. As the ideas above imply, we can start with the characters, specifically the protagonist, antagonist or protagonist’s helper, and develop an initial scene.
Let’s look at a subject that is really ignored in the modern era. I’m not certain how much this can help your current writing. I would argue that theoretically, this subject can really help those who write historical and futuristic fiction. It depends on how your write your historical and futuristic fiction. There are two ways to write historical fiction—let’s look at this.
The first and most common way to write historical fiction is to write a novel that projects modern ideas and history as historical ideas and history. In other words to present modern ideas and historical ideas as the same. I think this is perhaps the most egregious and perverse means of presenting a false view of history. The author is either completely ignorant of the past, is intentionally attempting to education people in a false view of history, or both. The real historical world is very different both culturally and socially from our current world. The true author attempts to convey this in historical writing.
The second and less common means of historical writing is to actually incorporate the past into a novel to convey the actual way people thought and acted in the past. This approach actually goes back into time to give a complete view of the way the people thought and acted. To this end, let’s look at how the world changed and how people thought in the past. This is more of a historical look at the world for the purpose of understanding how the world worked in the past and how people thought and acted. We’ll use historical information to see what concerned affected their lives. Here is a list of potential issues. We’ll look at them in detail:
- Social construction
- Common knowledge
- Common sense
- Reflected culture
- Reflected history
- Reflected society
What is truth? Actually, this isn’t a very difficult question to answer. My personal opinion is that a person who doesn’t know how to discover the truth is uneducated and inexperienced. The Greeks developed the three means to know truth starting back about 500 BC.
The Greeks discovered they could prove truth about non-repeatable events through the historical-legal method. This method works well enough to put people in jail or to death. It’s also used to prove historical truth—it works with non-repeatable events. The Greeks also invented logic—they used it to prove assertions that were not readily obvious in the real world—mathematics and philosophy. Most likely through logic, Aristotle realized something about the world. Perhaps other Greeks before Aristotle contemplated this, but he put it into practice and developed a method for it. We call this method the scientific method.
Although the scientific method is used to prove repeatable events, unfortunately, no matter how well we measure and conduct our experiments, the results are never ever exactly the same—how can this be. Is there something in the world that prevents exactness in repeatable events? In fact, there is.
From the world side there is chaos theory and probability theory. If you remember, I wrote that mathematics doesn’t exist in the real world—it is a construct in logic. Nothing in the real world ever works out as precisely as mathematics does, but how can this be? The reason is first probability theory and chaos math.
When I describe probability theory, I explain that probability theory explains why a one foot putt won’t always go in the cup. Probability affects everything from an atomic and molecular level. The electrons of each atom can be predicted to be within a sphere of probability around the nucleus, but the exact location of any one electron can never be known. You might think that the undetermined and undeterminable location of a single or even a handful of electrons might make no difference in the world, and you’d be right. It isn’t a handful, it’s billions and trillions of electrons, and this massive uncertainty affects our world and every experiment (repeatable event) enough that we can measure it. We can’t measure it precisely enough to predict its overall effects, but we sure can use math to corner it. This is the standard deviation we gather, measure, and calculate that shows how much deviation there is in the world through probability, except that’s not exactly right. I noted that if we could predict the effects of probability, we could also predict the standard deviation. We can measure, but not accurately predict. How can that be?
There is chaos theory to contend with. If probability theory is the reason you won’t hit the cup with every two foot putt, chaos is the reason you just might be able to make most of them. Chaos theory is completely mischaracterized in popular literature. Most people think that chaos theory shows that a butterfly flapping its wings in China could cause a wind storm in the USA. This is far from the idea of chaos theory. Chaos theory states that any system that appears random at a macro level can be shown to form a degree of order at a micro level. The prefect example is chaotic flow in aero and hydrodynamics…also Brownian motion. Chaotic flow looks chaotic at a macro level. As the experimenter peels back the layers of order to a micro level, we see that chaotic flow forms a mathematically predictable flow field. The math is complex and the flow is many times complex, but it is predictable to a degree. We also find, although the precise measure is impossible, the aggregate flow is measurable and predictable within a standard deviation. All this is pretty neat stuff. There are likely many more ideas and theories to be discovered.
The important point is this, we have three means to prove truth in the world. More next time.
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