Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 588, Quotations and Literature Complexity Q and A

12 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 588, Quotations and Literature Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggested by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

Direct mention and quotes are also useful and powerful for building complexity. The first rule is this—always attribute. Do not quote material or not give proper due to a direct mention in your works. You don’t need to make a textual attribution like you might for a technical paper. All you need to do is write: as Billy Bob said…, then quote the material. If a more detailed or direct attribution is necessary write like this: as Charles Dickins wrote in A Tale of Two Cities… then make the quote. Remember, don’t copy material and use it in your writing without proper attribution.

I would even be careful of rewriting certain material. Whatever its source, you should be very cautious of including any writing that is not your own. As I wrote—attribute properly.

Now, you might ask, why quote material at all? Quotes and direct mentions (name dropping) in your text can be very powerful and complex—plus it adds entertainment. For example, I used a quote from a French philosopher that happened to exactly fit a scene. One character recognized the intelligence, cultural, and linguistic skill of the protagonist because of the use of a quote. I’ve used quotes before in a similar vein.

I use direct mentions with descriptions all the time in my writing. For example, in the latest, Essie, I directly mention many titles of organ and popular music. In addition, I describe some of the music in my own words.

In many of my other novels, I have characters attending plays, ballets, opera, and musicals. I directly mention the names and authors of these entertainments, and I many times describe parts of them.

Writing does not happen in a vacuum. Writing has the power to incorporate all the greatest arts of humanity and tie them together. In this way, an opera can become a vehicle to propel your plot or theme. In my novel, Aksinya, numerous operas and ballets become the means of the mental and physical seduction of Aksinya. They play out the theme of the novel as the novel runs. In my novel, Shadow of Light, an opera reveals the way forward to the protagonist’s helper and this moves the plot. All of these quotes and direct mentions, add complexity and entertainment to the writing.

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 – New Novel, part 587, From the Ancient Allusions and Literature Complexity Q and A

11 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 587, From the Ancient Allusions and Literature Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggested by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

I’m absolutely sure we have not touched enough on figures of speech and the use of language in complex writing, but I’ll move on anyway into the integration of literature and culture into the writing.

Allusions tie your writing into the human sphere. They do that by touching on past literature and past ideas. Look at the definition of creativity. Creativity does not happen in a vacuum. Creativity is always the extrapolation of ideas from the past—even science fiction. Because of this, the tighter an author can tie their writing to the past and especially literature of the past, the better.

For example, in Essie, I allude to A Little Princess. I do this as a novel—the main character is read and reads this novel to learn about school and about British society. In the novel, three of the “bad” girls at Essie’s boarding school are named after the three worst girls in A Little Princess. Why do this? First, I always tie my novels to literature and classical art—in this case to some novels and to classical organ music. This is one of my subthemes in the novel. The novels are just alluded to for fun and general interest because the protagonist is learning about modern British society. I picked A Little Princess because I assume most of my readers will have read the book. Who hasn’t read the book for themselves or for their children—it is an absolute classic of English lit.

Second, although Essie is not A Little Princess, she like the protagonist in A Little Princess to some degree. Essie is a very unusual girl and a wonderful creature whose purpose is to be abused in the world. She is an orphan with no mother or father (except the Dagda) at first and is adopted by Mrs. Lyons. You can note some parallels in Essie’s life with Sara from A Little Princess. I wanted my readers to remember Sara and see Essie. In this way, Essie is tied to A Little Princess.

Third, the bad girls from Essie have the same first names as the bad girls from A Little Princess. This is a throwaway—it just seemed fun to me. I don’t make any remark about it in the writing, I just note their names. The point is simply to tie the novels together. A Little Princess is not the only novel that is alluded to or directly mentioned in the novel, but it is the most obvious. Again, the point is to tie Essie into literature from the past to make it more relevant and entertaining in the present.

Allusions are not the only types of direct ties to literature direct mention and quotes are also useful and powerful.

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 – New Novel, part 586, New from the Ancient Allusions and Literature Complexity Q and A

10 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 586, New from the Ancient Allusions and Literature Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggested by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

I’m absolutely sure we have not touched enough on figures of speech and the use of language in complex writing, but I’ll move on anyway into the integration of literature and culture into the writing.

Well perhaps not ancient—you don’t have to go back so far—although I do. The most important allusions in literature have always been those from myth and the Bible. In fact, more than one observer has made the direct point that to understand Western art, music, and literature, one must understand first the Bible and second Greek myth. This is absolutely true.

Out of the old comes the new. Look back a little to my definition of creativity. I’ll repeat it here: Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

From this definition, it should be obvious that creativity does not come out of a void. If there are no new themes, as many a wag has stated, the author can only pick from the themes of the past (those used already). I don’t necessarily agree with this viewpoint, however, everything in art, music, literature, poetry, and architecture comes out of the developments of the past—unfortunately, too may authors don’t fully comprehend this and have cut themselves of from the past. Allusions to literature, art, music, plays, etc. etc. fill my writing. I just finished writing Essie: Enchantment and the Aos Si which is filled with allusions to my writing, classical organ music, modern music, ancient British myth, and literature. Essie is all about music. The theme is somewhat about music, but even more about the fae (fairies) and the fae courts. The ties of the novel are to the ancient and not so ancient past. Here is the point of allusions and their inclusion in your writing. Allusions tie the past together with the times of your writing. The power of allusions is to build these ties directly so your novel becomes fixed in the human sphere. This is a key attribute of all writing and is a very important part of entertainment. A piece of writing might be perfect, but if it can’t be properly tied into the human sphere, it will be unentertaining and unexciting to the reader.

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

Posted in Daemon | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 585, Allusions and Literature Complexity Q and A

9 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 585, Allusions and Literature Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggested by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

I’m absolutely sure we have not touched enough on figures of speech and the use of language in complex writing, but I’ll move on anyway into the integration of literature and culture into the writing.

So, the biggest allusion is an allegory. I already wrote an allegory for you to review. That allegory is Aksinya: Enchantment and the Deamon. Aksinya is an allegory of the Apocryphal work Tobit. Aksinya isn’t a close allegory, but it is an allegory and even uses a couple of the characters from Tobit. At one time, allegories were considered the peak of literature. The reason for this was that allegories tend to package complex older ideas in a new or more understandable format. This is true of Aksinya. Additionally, allegories point directly back to a past literary work. This is especially important for classical works. The assumption is that everyone has read the original work—all your readers start out with a similar cultural framework. Today, this assumption is bunk. Most readers have barely touched the “classics” and modern “classics” are about as classic as toe-jam.

Today, many writers who place allegory, quotes, or allusions in their writing are fighting for the appeal of classics (and complexity) in their writing, but they are also encouraging readers to read and appreciate the classics. For example, although I don’t tell my readers in Aksinya, the novel is an allegory of Tobit, that fact should be obvious to the most casual observer. Additionally, the novel is filled with allusions to other literature—most readers would assume this anyway. Many of the allusions are very direct—even to the point of addressing the actual works or histories. Many of the allusions are to works not well known today, but considered classics in antiquity. My goal (other than entertainment) in Aksinya is to give the reader an appreciation for the history and the times. Aksinya touches on sorcery, mysticism, evil, and repentance—all ancient and in some degree classical themes.

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

Posted in Daemon | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 584, Literature Complexity Q and A

8 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 584, Literature Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggested by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

I’m absolutely sure we have not touched enough on figures of speech and the use of language in complex writing, but I’ll move on anyway into the integration of literature and culture into the writing.

If you notice how I wrote about this—the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes. It does no one any good to just add a cast off quote or a simple unnecessary allusion to a scene—what matters is clarification and entertainment. To put it simply, allusions and quotes are used to clarify and entertain. It is unnecessary that every reader or every reviewer get the quote or the allusion. In fact, a prolific author might make allusions or quotes from his own writing in his new works. The allusions and quotes don’t have to be modern, new, hip, or understood by all. At one end of the spectrum, an allusion or quote can be viewed as an Easter egg waiting to be found by the observant and educated. At the other end of the spectrum, the less observant or less educated or less culturally knowledgeable reader might view a quote or allusion as a simple figure of speech. There is nothing wrong with this at all as long as the quote or allusion is entertaining and clarifying. It is not worthwhile if either is not entertaining or is confusing. The point is to not confuse and to entertain.

So then, what is a quote and what an allusion? A quote is a word for word repetition from another piece of literature. A quote must be attributed the best it can be—that is, unless it is a quote from the author. In the case of a quote from the author’s works, it may still be reasonable to attribute, but only in the context of the character. As I wrote, always attribute quotes. Not following this little dictum has led to the anguish of quite a few modern writers, speech writers, and politicians. Quotes need attribution and, by the way, this is one great way an author points to the quote as a quote. The point of using a quote is, after all, to entertain and to clarify. The entertainment comes from the reader’s assent to the cultural and historical knowledge of the attribution. Likewise the clarification comes from placing a problem, event, or issue into a cultural or historical framework. I’ll try to think of some good examples for both.

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 – New Novel, part 583, No Confusion Complexity Q and A

7 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 583, No Confusion Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggest by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The only purpose, or I should more rightly state, the most important purpose, for a novel is entertainment. Without entertainment, no one will purchase, read, and continue to read your novel. Therefore, you must first strive for entertainment. Complexity leads to entertainment. Complexity is not confusion. This bears repeating and reflection: confusing can’t be entertaining.

To prevent confusion, the author must use all the common and uncommon tricks of writing I have been explaining in this blog. Figures of speech are just one method of reducing confusion. Figures of speech, in general, allow the author to make comparisons that would otherwise be impossible in the real world. This is supposed to make the writing more lucid and understandable. It should make the world of the novel more real and more elaborate to the reader. If it doesn’t or it engenders confusion, you either aren’t using figures of speech properly or you are interjecting unnecessary elements into the writing.

I mentioned yesterday, too much description is detrimental. Most authors can’t seem to provide necessary description, so most authors don’t need to worry about this. On the other hand, a few authors do use too much description. Use sufficient description to set the scene and characters. If you find yourself using less than 300 words for a character or for a scene setting—put some more in. If you find yourself using more than 1000 cut it back. Like I mentioned, most authors don’t use enough and don’t do enough scene and character setting.

Like a stage play, the scenes and characters of the novel should not be a secret from the readers. Show the readers what you should and use word pictures. Word pictures are figures of speech. When I write, I am trying to build an impressionist painting—a tapestry the reader can see as a piece of reality. Word pictures are the way to build this tapestry. With a picture, the author can place elements within that picture the reader can seek out and find. Through figures of speech, the picture can come alive in all dimensions.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

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 – New Novel, part 582, Not the Real Complexity Q and A

6 February 2016, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 582, Not the Real Complexity Q and A

Announcement:  Ancient Light is delayed due to the economy.  You can read more about it at http://www.ancientlight.com.  Ancient Light includes the second edition of Aegypt plus Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness.  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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

 Escape Cover proposal sm
Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I’m on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.

Scene development:

  1. Scene input (easy)
  2. Scene output (a little harder)
  3. Scene setting (basic stuff)
  4. Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
  5. Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
  6. Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

  1. Historical extrapolation
  2. Technological extrapolation
  3. Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing.

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I’ll use the next few weeks to answer them.

  1. Conflict/tension between characters
  2. Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)
  3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
  4. Evolving vs static character
  5. Language and style
  6. Verbal, gesture, action
  7. Words employed
  8. Sentence length
  9. Complexity
  10. Type of grammar
  11. Diction
  12. Field of reference or allusion
  13. Tone – how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.
  14. Mannerism suggest by speech
  15. Style
  16. Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter’s style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov’s includes ‘apparent’ inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Short digression: I’m in the Czech Republic on a short world tour. Flew into a couple of bases here–the Czechs are delightful people.

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated. Complexity comes out of tension and release.

What is complexity?

The first level of complexity is the theme. I discussed theme complexity earlier.

The second level of complexity is the plot. What makes a complex plot? In addition to the interweaving of the storylines, the tension and release cycle of the plot itself is directly related to the climax. This leads to the third level of complexity.

The third level of complexity is the integration of the tension and release into the climax and the revelation of the characters. That leads to the individual scenes.

The fourth level of complexity is the integration of language into the tension and release of the scenes. Figures of speech are to writing what grammar is to language.

The world of the novel is not real. The real world is truly, absolutely, and cruelly complex. The world of the novel can only be a ghost of the real, but it must stand for the real. The world of the novel is developed in the mind of the reader. This is a highly critical concept. The author fails if the writing is too detailed or not detailed enough. Too detailed and the reader is bored and discards the parts undesired. Too simple and the reader doesn’t have enough details to build the world with her imagination.

A novel can never be too complex.  Complexity is not detail. Complexity, as I’ve written, is not the details of the descriptions or necessarily the details of the world of the novel (details are important, just not as the total answer to complexity).

I’ve written before, as a guide, the author should use at least 300 words to describe characters and settings. I hate to put an upper limit on this, but I’d advise no more than 500 words at a time or at the top 1000 words. You can add description as necessary and as it fits the needs of the story, but too much is too much. Now most modern authors don’t use enough description at all. Most need to add description. However, if you read many of the early Victorian novels (including George Eliot and the Bronte Sisters) you will find a surfeit of description that leads the reader to wonder just when the story will finally begin. Thackeray is almost as bad.

We want complexity. We want integration of the tension and release elements. We want the tension and release development of the climax. Do not mistake obtuse or profligate writing for complexity—it is neither. Complexity means clarity. If the writing is not clear, it can’t be complex. Use all the writer’s tools to blend complexity into your writing. Again, if the writing is not clear as water in a quiet pool, the writing is not complex, it is simply confusing. Confusing can’t be entertaining. I repeat, confusing can’t be entertaining.

The fifth level of complexity is the integration of literature and culture into the tension and release of the scenes.

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

Posted in Daemon | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment