10 March 2017, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part 978, still more of an Initial Scene, Themes and Pathos
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 started writing my 28th novel, working title Red Sonja. I’m also working on my 29th novel, working title School.
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. Since I’m writing a new novel, we need a new theme statement. Here is an initial cut.
For novel 28: 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 29: Sorcha, the abandoned child of an Unseelie and a human, secretly attends Wycombe Abbey girls’ school where she meets the problem child Deirdre and is redeemed.
These are the steps I use to write 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
Would you like to write a novel that a publisher will consider? Would you like to write a novel that is published? How about one that sells?
Pathos and Romantic, that perfectly describes Sorcha and Deirdre. Sorcha is the direct pathos developer. Who can’t feel emotion for an abandoned child whose greatest goal is to learn. Not only that, she’s hungry, lonely, and has nothing. How can you not want to comfort a child like that. At the same time, she is special. I wanted to key back the special a little. She is a Halfling—the child of an Unseelie fae and a human. That’s the reason she is abandoned. The Romantic part of her character comes into play because of her background, her special skills, and her desire to learn.
Deirdre is an entirely different beast. She has had everything she could ever want in life, but she’s never had what she really wants in life. She is seeking a friend and a soulmate. Not for romance but for friendship. She’s never had a friend who is like her—when I write, “like her” I mean her special and Romantic qualities. Deirdre has always had to hide who she really is. She is really smart (like Sorcha), very special (she can see through Sorcha’s glamour), very action oriented (just like Sorcha). The difference is where Sorcha has learned caution in the world, Deirdre hasn’t. That’s why Deirdre is at Wycombe. Deirdre is there to learn self-control and caution. Her somewhat relation, Luna Bolang, is supposed to do just that. Wycombe isn’t the usual place to send obstinate girls, but for the Calloway family, it may be the last place. Deirdre will do anything to stay in this school and not return to Rosewood House and Grey Coat. Deirdre is a fighter.
The initial scene release is a fight between Sorcha and Deirdre. I’ll tell you more.
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