28 March 2012, Development - Subterfuge and Change of Voice in a Novel
Introduction: I realized that I need to introduce this blog a little. I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. The working title was Daemon, and this was my 21st novel. Over the last year, 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.
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/.
Sometimes (rarely) character voice must change. You may and should change character voice in these circumstances:
1. Development of the character
2. Mental illness
3. Physical or mental effects
5. Seduction (sales)
6. Subterfuge (politics)
4. ...there may be more, I'll think of them as I write about the others.
Are politics and seduction the same? I guess they can be. We might expect a successful cheat of any ilk to have a change of voice when he or she begins to convince. I showed you yesterday an example of this kind of change. In a current novel I am writing, the main character plays very successfully at subterfuge until she is caught. I give her an entirely different voice before and after.
In the beginning, she acts like she can't speak English very well, she was injured and acts as though the injury still affects her, she acts like she is ignorant, there is much more. After she is caught, her character's voice changes in that she speaks English well, she is not as ignorant as she acted (she is still kind of ignorant), her injury had healed a while ago. The voice of the character changed because she was acting in a different manner than before. However, you can still tell who she is, that is, her character did not change at all. The way she portrayed herself to the world did change significantly. So, the voice changed, but it didn't change so much that you you couldn't tell who the character was.
Not often should a character's voice change in a novel. When it does change, the readers must still be able to tell who the character is and to discern that character from the others. Character voice is a critical part of a novel and reveals the developed character.
I'll write about how to project the character's voice, tomorrow.
I'll repeat my published novel websites so you can see more examples: http://www.ldalford.com/, and the individual novel websites: http://www.aegyptnovel.com/, http://www.centurionnovel.com/, http://www.thesecondmission.com/, http://www.theendofhonor.com/, http://www.thefoxshonor.com/, and http://www.aseasonofhonor.com/.