Writing – part x616, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Developing Entertaining Characters

8 December 2018, Writing – part x616, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Developing Entertaining Characters

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker          

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

Everything is about entertainment.  The purpose for all published novels is entertainment.  Other than this is the only point of fiction literature, one of the main reasons is that entertainment can fill a lot of holes as well as result in the suspension of disbelief.

The factors that do lend themselves to entertaining are these:

  1. Characters
  2. Plot
  3. Setting
  4. Topics
  5. Writing
  6. Use of figures of speech (vocabulary and language).

How to develop entertaining protagonists?  The first thing to note is that you will rarely find a truly entertaining protagonist in nature.  I suppose it is possible, but it’s like finding a whole conversation in nature.  What do I mean?

Actual conversations are filled with incomplete sentences, run-on sentences, incomplete thoughts, filler words, filler sounds, incorrect word use, and a whole host of other problems.  Don’t believe me—just read any transcription of an actual conversation.  Plays and novels are different.

In a play or a novel, the conversation is similar and perfect.  You might find some intentional sentence fragments, fillers, and incomplete thoughts, but in general, the conversation is whole, complete, and has a specific point in the context of the novel—or it should.  Characters in fiction are like this.

Characters that we develop and design for our novels are not stereotypes (necessarily, some authors do indeed use stereotypes), but entertaining characters fit a typical design structure that we call romantic.  You don’t need to use the romantic design, but you do risk creating a character who is not entertaining.  Perhaps we need to look at what makes a character entertaining.

I’ve thought a lot about this as I’ve read about thousands of protagonists and developed over thirty—what makes an entertaining protagonist?  The first thought comes from a misunderstanding about protagonists.  Many authors think that readers what to be like or put themselves into the mind and body of the protagonist to vicariously live as the protagonist.  I don’t think that is true at all.  I don’t think most readers want to be like the protagonists, they want to experience the protagonists.  They don’t want to vicariously live the lives of the protagonists, they want to experience the emotions, elation, fear, happiness, love—basically the feelings of the protagonist.  Here is an example.  A prim and moral man or woman who enjoys reading sultry romances or historical writing about immoral people.  They might never actually want to experience adultery, murder, theft, and all, but they exhilarate in the emotions and feelings of the characters and their times.  Likewise, most people who read thrillers, mysteries, or spy novels would not necessarily want to experience these dangerous and difficult events, but they want to vicariously feel the emotions of the characters.

Okay, this is a thin line, and I’m sure there are some people who vicariously live their lives through characters, but I’m trying to help focus on the entertaining.  Whether the reader wants to vicariously live or vicariously feel the experiences of the protagonist, the same tools will work.

Here is the point, you don’t need a male or female character to appeal to a man or a woman.  You don’t need a rich character to appeal to the rich or a poor to appeal to a poor.  What you need is to provide vicarious emotion or feelings through your character.  This was my point about vicarious emotion. Entertaining characters cause the reader to feel emotions.  The emotions can be those of the protagonist or for the protagonist.  This is the number one entertaining feature of any character.  You want the readers crying for the character even if the character has no reason to cry.  You want the readers exulting for the character even if the character has no reason to exult.  The question is how to achieve this, and the best way to start is to look at what the ancient Greeks thought about it.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

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Writing – part x615, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Entertaining Characters

7 December 2018, Writing – part x615, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Entertaining Characters

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker         

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

Everything is about entertainment.  The purpose for all published novels is entertainment.  Other than this is the only point of fiction literature, one of the main reasons is that entertainment can fill a lot of holes as well as result in the suspension of disbelief.

The factors that do lend themselves to entertaining are these:

  1. Characters
  2. Plot
  3. Setting
  4. Topics
  5. Writing
  6. Use of figures of speech (vocabulary and language).

Characters and specifically the protagonist are the main means to achieve entertaining writing.  You can ruin every other area, except writing quality, and still have an entertaining product with an entertaining protagonist.  The reason for this is the protagonist almost completely defines the novel.

Remember, a novel is the revelation of the protagonist.  The telic flaw of the novel (the problem resolved in the plot and climax) belongs to the protagonist.  The topic and settings are connected directly to the protagonist.  I argue that the protagonist is so important to the novel and the entertainment in the novel, that this one factor easily overwhelms everything else.  An entertaining character can completely electrify a novel.  Here’s some examples.

Alan Bradley’s Flavia de Luca.  Just the name of this character screams entertainment, beyond that.  I’m not impressed with Bradley’s plots.  His topics are interesting and well researched.  The settings are not bad.  His writing is wonderful, but Flavia, oh Flavia.  Who could not love a ten year old chemical genius who solves murders?  I’ll give you that Bradley writes like a modern Shakespeare, but his character of Flavia de Luca makes his novels sing.

Jack Vance’s Keith Gersen from the Demon Princes novels.  Here is an unforgettable character.  Many of Jack Vance’s characters are unforgettable.  They are common without being common at all.  They are powerfully romantic with strong imaginations fettered by setting and self-control.  They are real people who get caught up in circumstances beyond their control but then who use intellect to power out of them.

Anna MacCaffrey’s characters are bold and entertaining, but she has a tendency to ruin them in her serial novels.  Menolly is just such a character.  Here is a bold and entertaining character who faces the world fraught with prejudice and intentional malice, but who through independence and strength of mind succeeds beyond everyone’s expectations.

I’d like to throw my characters into the mix because that’s what I strive to achieve in my writing.  I develop powerfully entertaining characters based on a similar mold to these authors.  I develop characters to appeal to readers.  I don’t use stereotypes or set characteristics, but I do use the romantic template appropriate to the novel itself.

This romantic template is the way to produce entertaining characters and specifically entertaining protagonists.  I’ll show you the basic template and then apply some advice to help you build even better characters—entertaining protagonists.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

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Writing – part x614, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Means of Entertaining

6 December 2018, Writing – part x614, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Means of Entertaining

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker         

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

Everything is about entertainment.  The purpose for all published novels is entertainment.  Other than this is the only point of fiction literature, one of the main reasons is that entertainment can fill a lot of holes as well as result in the suspension of disbelief.

The factors that do lend themselves to entertaining are these:

  1. Characters
  2. Plot
  3. Setting
  4. Topics
  5. Writing
  6. Use of figures of speech (vocabulary and language).

We could simply write that developing entertaining factors will result in entertaining novels, but you know it is more difficult than this.  We have all read novels with terrible characters, terrible plots, terrible settings, terrible topics, poor writing, and poor use of the language.  Actually, maybe you haven’t.  I have.

Most of the time, poorly written novels don’t ever see the light of publication.  In many cases, these poorly written novels are the work of potentially good and great writers who are just learning to write.  The reason they aren’t published is because the novels aren’t entertaining.  I can assure you that any real entertaining novel that a publisher gets a hold of—at least that fits in their publishing genre, style, and ideas—will get published.  The main problem with most new writers is that their writing isn’t entertaining.  This happens for a number of reasons.

The main problem is that many if not most inexperienced writers is that they want to write the next great American novel.  In their mind, the next great American novel is literary, pontificating, intellectual, acclaimed, and educational.  For all these same reasons, this type of novel will be terrible, uninteresting, and unentertaining.  I can assure you, no novel written with any of these reasons in mind, will succeed.  They will not be entertaining.  Not entertaining means not publishable.  Not publishable means not published.  Not published means not read.  Not read means the circular file.

However, many of these authors will assume their great American novel should be published, and they will self-publish.  This is perhaps a practical solution for a proven and published author, it is not a good idea for an unproven author because it will promote the idea that they wrote a good novel.

A novel that is not entertaining is not good.  Dump any other idea except that you want to write a novel that is entertaining.  An entertaining novel is first of all the type of novel you would like to read.  If you write a novel and can’t stop reading it, you might be on the right track.  On the other hand, if you write a novel and can’t really read it and be entertained, no one else will be either.

As we look at the factors of entertaining in detail, let’s not forget—the purpose of writing fiction is to entertain.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Writing – part x613, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Entertaining

5 December 2018, Writing – part x613, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Entertaining

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker         

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

Everything is about entertainment.  The purpose for all published novels is entertainment.  Other than this is the only point of fiction literature, one of the main reasons is that entertainment can fill a lot of holes as well as result in the suspension of disbelief.

Did you get that?  Entertainment can make up for a host of ills in writing.  I point out Harry Potty all the time.  Harry Potty has all kinds of issues partially due to the fact it is not mature literature, but rather Young Adult literature.  In any case, Harry Potty is entertaining, and in spite of its issues, the entertainment factor has turned a sloppily written Young Adult genre series of novels into a bestseller.  I’m into this.

I’ve written before about Dragonsong and Dragonsinger.  These are highly entertaining semi-mature novels.  They are much better written than Harry Potty, and in fact, they are perhaps some of the best examples of highly entertaining tightly written novels.  Although I would argue Dragonsong and Dragonsinger are not young adult literature, they may be an example of how great young adult literature should be written.  That is entertaining, tightly and succinctly written, with almost no extraneous parts at all.  All writing should be this way, but especially, young adult literature must be very tight to hold the attention of the readers.

Tightly written doesn’t necessarily mean entertaining, but focus in the writing does lend itself to entertainment.  The factors that do lend themselves to entertaining are these: characters, plot, setting, topics, writing, and use of figures of speech (vocabulary and language).

Let’s take a look at these.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

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Writing – part x612, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Protagonist to Telic Flaw

4 December 2018, Writing – part x612, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Protagonist to Telic Flaw

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker         

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

The telic flaw is the problem the protagonist must resolve.  The expectation of most writing and especially romantic fiction is that the protagonist uniquely is the only person, at least in the worldview of the novel, who can resolve the telic flaw.

Here is the plot statement and telic flaw from my novel Blue Rose Enchantment and the Detective:  Serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.

I’d rather design a protagonist and place a telic flaw on him or her.  Since, we already have a plot statement (telic flaw) and a protagonist, the point is kind of moot.  Let me start with the protagonist from the theme statement and compare her to the plot statement.  Here is the theme statement:

Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

And then the telic flaw:

Serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.

I think, but observation, you can see how the protagonist in the theme statement fits directly into the telic flaw.  Or rather, the telic flaw is truly Azure’s telic flaw.  Look at each point.

First, serial supernatural murders.  Azure desires to be an acclaimed supernatural detective.  In fact, she already is a supernatural detective.  Therefore, as a telic flaw, the entire idea of serial supernatural murders fits her to the tee.  Further, the victims are magic users.  I noted to you that magic is a negative in my novels.  The fact that Azure is opposed to magic immediately provides a wonderful conflict and tension in the novel.  Her telic flaw is to solve the crime and with this, she is not conflicted—she is conflicted with the problem of magic, but not with her goals or work.

There is more.  The murderers are Celtic gods.  This also fits into the picture of Azure’s problems and skills.  The problem with Celtic gods is that they are significantly powerful—more powerful than a normal human.  Azure is a normal human.  The hidden elements in this telic flaw is that Azure must be somehow connected to Celtic gods or the gods of Britain.  To resolve the telic flaw, Azure must join with British gods, magic users, and the supernatural.  She must also work with the police.  All of this fits into her character and provides a perfect fit from the telic flaw to the plot and the character.

Okay, the cheater is that I designed the protagonist and then developed the telic flaw from her.  This is how I write.  You can also go the other way, it just doesn’t work for me as well.  Maybe someday I’ll get an idea for a telic flaw and have to build a protagonist, but usually I work the other way around.

I guess we will move to entertaining next.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

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Writing – part x611, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Parts of the Telic Flaw

3 December 2018, Writing – part x611, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Parts of the Telic Flaw

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker         

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

The telic flaw is the problem the protagonist must resolve.  The expectation of most writing and especially romantic fiction is that the protagonist uniquely is the only person, at least in the worldview of the novel, who can resolve the telic flaw.

We can approach this two different ways.  We can either design a protagonist with a telic flaw or we can design a telic flaw and wrap a protagonist around it.  Either method works, but starting with a telic flaw is usually a difficult proposition.  Let’s look at it.

Here is the plot statement and telic flaw from my novel Blue Rose Enchantment and the Detective:  Serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.  This is a reasonable telic flaw and a plot statement.    If you notice, we aren’t close to the protagonist at all.  We need to find a protagonist who can solve: the serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.

Look closely at this telic flaw (plot statement).  You have an antagonist—the Celtic gods.  You have an object being harmed or affected by the antagonist—magic users.  You have a means of harm or action—serial supernatural murders.  You also have a setting—Britain in the modern era.  With this, I could write a plot.  This is a type of plot statement.  A plot statement defines the telic flaw, but not necessarily the protagonist.  I might be about to write a plot based on this type of statement.  The reason we are missing the protagonist is because the protagonist is assumed to oppose the antagonist and to be directly connected to the telic flaw.  I could take the theme statement:

Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

And add the telic flaw to it:

The serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.

Here we go:

Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.  She solves the serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.

There you go.  These are somewhat independent yet specifically dependent.  What I mean is this, I developed the protagonist and provided her with a telic flaw.  I could have written a different character, but I didn’t.  I designed the character of Azure Rose and placed a telic flaw on her.  The telic flaw is connected to Azure Rose through the supernatural crimes related in the telic flaw.  I would assert that in the context of the novel, only Azure Rose can solve this crime.

What I need, at the minimum, is a protagonist who is able to solve a supernatural crime, and specifically serial supernatural murders of magic users.  Let’s make a protagonist:

I need a protagonist who is familiar with the supernatural, with magic use, and Celtic gods.  Depending on the world of your novel, you could potentially develop many different types of characters.  In my novels, I also had my choice, to a degree.  Whatever any other characteristics the protagonist must be familiar with the supernatural, Celtic gods, and magic users.

In my novels, magic use is a bad thing.  Also, the Celtic gods are part of the basic structure of my novels.  I already had a setting and characters.  In addition, I have a distinct approach to the reflected worldview of supernatural myths in my novels.  This supernatural is actually defined in this novel itself.  In other words, how you define each of these items in your worldview will define your protagonist.  Already we have too many variables to simply define a protagonist. It is possible to design a protagonist from a telic flaw, but I don’t advise it.  It is a method.  We can come to many different protagonists through this means.

I’d rather design a protagonist and place a telic flaw on him or her.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

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Writing – part x610, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Protagonist and Telic Flaw

2 December 2018, Writing – part x610, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, Protagonist and Telic Flaw

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment.  I’ll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher.  More information can be found atwww.ancientlight.com.  Check out my novels–I think you’ll really enjoy them.

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 withhttp://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.

Today’s Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select “production schedule,” you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.

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.

     4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.

  1. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.

These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:

  1. Design the initial scene
  2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
  3. Research as required
  4. Develop the initial setting
  5. Develop the characters
  6. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
  7. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
  8. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
  9. Write the climax scene
  10. Write the falling action scene(s)
  11. Write the dénouement scene

I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential titleBlue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.  The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.

Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.

Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30thnovel, working title Red Sonja.  I finished my 29th novel, working titleDetective.  I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.

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 30:  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 31:  TBD

Here is the scene development outline:

  1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
  2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
  3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
  4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
  5. Write the release
  6. Write the kicker         

Today:  Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading.  If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem.  To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration.  If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too.  Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.

  1. Reasonably written in standard English
  2. No glaring logical fallacies
  3. Reasoned worldview
  4. Creative and interesting topic
  5. A Plot
  6. Entertaining
  7. POV

The telic flaw is the problem the protagonist must resolve.  The expectation of most writing and especially romantic fiction is that the protagonist uniquely is the only person, at least in the worldview of the novel, who can resolve the telic flaw.

We can approach this two different ways.  We can either design a protagonist with a telic flaw or we can design a telic flaw and wrap a protagonist around it.  Either method works, but starting with a telic flaw is usually a difficult proposition.  Let’s look at it.

Let’s start with a telic flaw.  Say we want to write a mystery or detective novel.  The telic flaw is a detective problem, and let’s say a crime.  Do you see the problem already?  You have to drill down much deeper to even begin to build a protagonist.

Say we further move from a crime to a supernatural crime.  Still not enough.  How about serial supernatural murders.  Still not enough.  So serial supernatural murders of magic users.  Still not enough.  How about serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient gods.  This is still not enough.  Let’s go all the way to the end.  Serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.  That is a reasonable telic flaw and a plot statement.  It’s the plot statement and telic flaw from my novel Blue Rose Enchantment and the Detective.  If you notice, we aren’t close to the protagonist at all.  To finish this, we need to find a protagonist who can solve: the serial supernatural murders of magic users by ancient Celtic gods who are trying to cause problems in Britain in the modern era.

If you haven’t noticed, we have a telic flaw, the beginnings of a plot, and still no protagonist.  We still need to design a protagonist who can achieve this telic flaw resolution.  That becomes a real problem.  I had to develop an entire plot to build a protagonist.  This is one method, but not my preferred method.  I guess we should keep writing about this, but I wanted to point out some ideas from the telic flaw.

If you look at the telic flaw, you can break it into distinct parts.  These parts and observations can help you design a telic flaw and a plot.  Let’s look at that next.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites:

http://www.ancientlight.com/

http://www.aegyptnovel.com/

http://www.centurionnovel.com

http://www.thesecondmission.com/

http://www.theendofhonor.com/

http://www.thefoxshonor.com

http://www.aseasonofhonor.com

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment