4 August 2016,Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 761, Initial Setting
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, proposed title, Essie: Enchantment and the Aos Si, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.
I just started writing my 27th novel, working title, Claire, potential title Sorcha: Enchantment and the Trainee. This might need some tweaking. The theme statement is something like this: Claire (Sorcha) Davis accepts Shiggy, the dangerous screw-up, into her Stela branch of the organization and rehabilitates her.
Here is the cover proposal for Essie: Enchantment and the Aos Si. Essie is my 26th novel.
The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I’m editing many of my novels using comments from my primary reader. I finished my 27th novel, working title Claire. I’m working on marketing materials.
I’m an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action–in fact, to write any novel.
- Scene input (easy)
- Scene output (a little harder)
- Scene setting (basic stuff)
- Creativity (creative elements of the scene)
- Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)
- Release (climax of creative elements)
How to begin a novel. Number one thought, we need an entertaining idea. I usually encapsulate such an idea with a theme statement. Here’s the theme statement from Sorcha.
Claire (Sorcha) Davis accepts Shiggy, a dangerous screw-up, into her Stela branch of the organization and rehabilitates her.
The setting is pretty much complete. We built from the large to the small. The final part to develop is the initial scene. We build the initial scene from the theme statement, the characters, and the setting. I usually start with the initial scene. This should be the scene where the protagonist and the antagonist or the protagonist and the protagonist’s helper first meet. I did visualize the initial scene first and developed the theme statement from it. You can still pull the initial scene from the theme statement.
I visualized Shiggy waking in a room in Sherwood House. She was knocked out by an instructor during a hostage rescue exercise where Shiggy accidentally shot one of the hostages (it was a laser scored event). Shiggy awakes in Sherwood House and meets Sorcha.
The setting of the initial scene is Sherwood House. This is a place of wonder and yet a plain British house. Now, we have the setting and the initial scene.
In this case, the author has to develop the basics of Sherwood House and Sherwood forest. All of either or both doesn’t need to be described, but the author slowly reveals the house and the forest as the characters discover and investigate the areas. This is all from Shiggy’s POV (point of view). This is part of the revelation of the characters. The revelation of the characters includes the revelation of the setting and areas around them. This is a very important part of the revelation of the novel.
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