14 December 2015, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 528, examples Telic Flaws Details Character 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.
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 Lilly: Enchantment and the Computer. Lilly is my 24th novel.
The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I’ve started writing Shape.
I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.
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. History 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
10. Type of grammar
12. Field of reference or allusion
14. Mannerism suggest by speech
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 3. 3. Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme
Sixth, what are their flaws and specifically, what is the telic flaw of the protagonist. How does the protagonist change? Theoretically, only the protagonist changes in a novel. I’ve written before, that if another character changes in the novel, you’ve chosen the wrong character to write about. This is true to a degree. This subscription doesn’t mean a character can’t change, only they may not change in the degree of a telic flaw. The focus of the novel is not them.
The change in the protagonist is the change in the telic flaw. If they overcome the telic flaw, it is a comedy. If they do not overcome their telic flaw, the novel is a tragedy. The more complex and interwoven the telic flaw in the novel and the character(s), the more complex the novel. The reason I mention character(s) is that although a telic flaw is personal and individual, it can also be shared though the protagonist. Thus, in my yet unpublished novel, Hestia: Enchantment of the Hearth, the telic flaw is Angela’s faith or lack thereof. The novel is about a whole lot of faith in what appears to be real in the world. Angela is the protagonist, but the other main characters are seeking the same thing, but in different degrees and ways. Indeed, Jack tells Angela, if you believe, then I must believe too. The turning point is based in Angela’s belief in something supernatural. The climax is actually much more complex than that, but the point is that Angela, the protagonist, is part of a larger idea, and her response to the climax affects may others.
This is what I mean by complexity in a telic flaw as well as complexity of a character.