2 May 2012, Development - an example of a Classical First Scene
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.
If you haven't guessed yet, I've left this up because I plan to use it in the future as we move through development. The steps in making and using a character in a novel are as follows:
1. Development of the character (history, description, personality, etc.)
2. Revelation of the character (within the novel, show don't tell)
a. Description of the character - introduction
b. Voice of the character
c. Continuing revelation by showing
In a classical plot (and in most of my novels) you have a protagonist, an antagonist, and a protagonist's helper. If you develop these three characters for a novel, the plot will naturally fall out of the development of the characters.
I'll write about the beginning of my final published novel. Final in the sense of the sixth one I've written about. In The Second Mission, the protagonist and the protagonist's helper are introduced in the first scene. This is a classical means of beginning a novel. The novel begins at a very exciting point and begins to build very nicely from there.
The Second Mission is about the second mission of humans into time. The protagonist, Alan Fisher, is accidentally brought along on the mission. The protagonist's helper is Sophia, the true time traveller. The exciting beginning is the moment when Alan is accidentally whisked from the end of the twentieth Century and Sophia is sent to Greece in 400 BC on the second mission.
This first scene shows their meeting and their first moments together. Alan is astounded and surprised because he is now in Greece in 400 BC, and Sophia for the same reason--because Alan is in Greece in 400BC.
The point is that in a novel with a classical form, you introduce the protagonist and either the protagonist's helper or the antagonist in the first scene. The first scene needs to and should be an action and excitement oriented scene.
I'll explain more about tension and first scene development. I'll talk about characteristics that make a bad first scene/chapter eventually.
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/.