23 April 2017, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part x22, Creative Elements in the World of Ancient Light, Sister of Darkness
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:
- Don’t confuse your readers.
- Entertain your readers.
- Ground your readers in the writing.
- Don’t show (or tell) everything.
- 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
I finished writing my 27th novel, working title, Claire, potential title Sorcha: Enchantment and the Curse. This might need some tweaking. The theme statement is: Claire (Sorcha) Davis accepts Shiggy, a dangerous screw-up, into her Stela branch of the organization and rehabilitates her.
Here is the cover proposal for Sorcha: Enchantment and the Curse.
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: transition from input to output focused on the telic flaw resolution)
- 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
Here is the beginning of the method from the outline:
- Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
- Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
- Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
- Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
- Write the release
- Write the kicker
To me, the most interesting themes are about worlds, people, and life that goes on around us that is hidden or unrealized. I have developed this type of world and theme and used it to build creative elements for my plots and scenes. I’ll use my own novels as examples for this. The next novel in the Ancient Light series is Sister of Darkness. This novel should be available in the next year. It is supposed to be published as a three-in-one with Aegypt and Sister of Light.
The world of Ancient Light revolves around the idea of two ancient Egyptian goddesses who have been brought back into the 20th Century. In Sister of Darkness, the major creative elements become World War II, the Osiris Offering Tablet, Lumiere’ (Paul and Leora’s daughter), and British Intelligence.
Additionally, I begin to feed in new creative elements in the supernatural part of this world. It is still our world, but the hidden part of our world. For example, Leora, the Goddess of Light, discovers the Gaelic and British gods and goddesses are still existent and are trying to protect Britain from the spiritual elements of the World War. Leora meets the major gods and goddesses of Britain. She also meets King George who knows about these beings. These are all ties of the real world we know and see in history with the world we imagine can exist in time and space. These elements make up the creative elements of the plot and the scenes of the novel. All of these are cascading creative elements. For example, Lumiere’ is captured by the servants of the Goddess of Darkness and brought to Germany. The reason is that Lumiere’ had and used the Osiris Offering Tablet. This tablet, a creative element, represents the power of the Goddess of Darkness. In the scope of the novel, the Goddess of Darkness teaches Lumiere’ to use the tablet. This is a touch of the supernatural. These creative elements touch each other and expand to new creative elements. The Goddess of Darkness’ servants are creative elements on their own. One of them, the head servant is Oba, who plays a part in future novels. In this novel, he is Lumiere’s’ jailor and protector. Another example, Lumiere’s kidnapping results in her parents working with British Intelligence to find her. That is a creative element. The problem is that the work of Paul and Leora with British Intelligence can’t just be to find their daughter. This is part of their plan, but only a tiny part of the importance of the mission that Paul, Leora, and their friend, Major Lyons embark on. These creative elements lead to other creative elements and so on.
My point is this, the author develops a world through the creative elements of the novel. These creative elements form the novel, but they also develop the entertainment in the novel. The creativity and the development of these elements are what make a novel worth reading. They also capture the imagination of readers and publishers. I’ll look at the creative elements in the world of my unpublished/uncontracted novels next.
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