Announcement: Ancient Light is in publication, and you can buy it at almost any internet book sellers or order it from any brick and mortar bookstore. You can read 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.
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 purpose of a novel is to reveal the protagonist and usually the protagonist’s helper. The author needs to place them in circumstance that allows them to reveal themselves. The means can be conversation, exploration, discovery, other’s conversation, confession, accidental discovery.
There are three ways to know truth: the scientific method, the historical-witness method, and logic. The three tests used for all documentary evidence in history are: the bibliographical test, the internal test, and the external test. Let’s see how we can use these tests.
The way people think about the world is rooted in their religious (spiritual) view of the world–no kidding. There are four stages in religious thinking (religions):
1. Animism – gods in everything, man is fated
2. Pantheonic Paganism – gods rule certain things and both man and god are fated
3. Mysterium – gods rule and man can know god through rituals and education
4. Gnosticism – god is there and man can be like him through knowledge
As a culture gains philosophy, it also begins to progress on the long breakthrough of scientific understanding. Under animism, there are gods in everything that make the living and nonliving things in the world grow and move. Philosophy brings on mysterium and begins to ask the question, if the gods don’t make the world run, then what does. The answer to this question requires philosophy initially as logic (which we will eventually get to). The Greeks used philosophy (logic) to design the scientific and the legal-historical methods of knowing truth. When a culture begins to use the scientific method, it begins to see that natural laws and not gods govern the universe. When a culture begins to use the legal-historical method, it begins to see that humans and not fate govern the history of the world.
This is the great understanding that leads to Gnosticism. Gnosticism still acknowledges a god, but that god is a watch-maker who set the world in motion. Also, in the ideas of Gnosticism, men can appropriate the power of the godhead through knowledge. Almost every culture in the modern world has accepted this primus of spirituality. Gnosticism is the religion of the modern world. The idea that science will prove man’s thinking is entirely chemical based or that science can prove everything, is purely Gnostic. The idea that man is supreme is purely Gnostic. The ideas of atheism are Gnostic.
Unfortunately, Gnosticism in the modern world was really brought about by Christianity. It was strongly rooted in Christian thinking for a long time and only broke away in the last century. Gnosticism claims to allow the discovery of god and humanity through science and logic–unfortunately, Gnosticism tends to ignore the other means to know truth–legal-historical and logic. Gnosticism tends to stick with empiricism. In fact, the reason Gnosticism is stuck in empiricism instead of logic is because of who won in the transition from the age of reason to the age of enlightenment.