2 August 2017, Writing Ideas – New Novel, part x123, Creative Elements and Plot Devices
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 finished my 29th novel, working title School. I’ll be providing information on the marketing materials and editing.
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.
Plot devices are specifically a concept that furthers a plot. A plot device can be a theme idea or a plot idea. It can be standalone, but in general a novel might include many plot devices to further the plot. This is why I originally tied the plot device to creative elements. I will note, creative elements are not the same as plot devices, however plot devices drive creative elements and creative elements can also drive a plot device. For example, two sided love or romantic love is a plot device. To use it, I require two people with the propensity to love one another. The concept of romantic love drives other potential creative elements. If you add another love interest, you can have a three way love or a love triangle.
To make this clearer, a creative element comes from a setting element. A setting element is anything described in a setting. It can be a person, place, or a thing. A setting element becomes a creative element when any character does something with it. This should also be considered a Chekov’s gun. Or rather any creative element should be a Chekov’s gun. This means that every creative element is critical to the plot.
The difference between a creative element and a plot device is a creative element is a thing (noun) while a plot device is always an action with or without a direct object. The point is that a creative element gives you a noun to manipulate, a plot device gives you a way to manipulate it.
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