3 November 2012, Development - even more on Learning
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.
Here are my rules of writing:
1. Entertain your readers.
2. Don't confuse your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don't show (or tell) everything.
A scene outline is a means of writing a novel where each scene follows the other with a scene input from the previous scene and a scene output that leads to the next scene. The scenes don't necessarily have to follow directly in time and place, however they generally follow the storyline of the protagonist.
A storyline outline is a means of writing a novel where the author develops a scene outline for more than one character and bases the plot on one or more of these storyline scenes. This allows the scenes to focus on more than the protagonist. This is a very difficult means of writing. There is a strong chance of confusing your readers.
Whether you write with a scene outline or a storyline outline, you must properly develop your scenes. All novels are developed from scenes and each scene has a design similar to a novel. Every successful novel has the following basic parts:
1. The beginning
2. The rising action
3. The Climax
4. The falling action
5. The dénouement
Every scene has these parts:
1. The setting (where, what, who, when, how)
2. The connection (input)
3. The tension development
4. The release
5. The output
Writing a great story or novel is about the knowledge of the basics and the knowledge of how to put together a scene. If you can put together a scene, you can write any fiction well. This is why I have listed the parts of a novel and scene above. These are the same parts of a story. These are the basics of any fiction writing. Note, that you must know how to write well. The rest is about how to write a story.
Let's make this really clear. You can be the most skilled person in the English language and not be able to write well at all. The problem with most writing training is that it focuses on the top end items such as theme and plot or on the low end items such as grammar and punctuation. Both are important, but you can know everything there is to know about the plot and theme and everything there is to know about grammar and punctuation and not be able to write anything worth while at all.
A program that focuses on writing sentences and paragraphs can be helpful, and the building blocks of all successful writing are sentences and paragraphs, but that is still not enough. The magic of writing is in the development of scenes. All great fiction writing is through scenes.
You rarely hear it said, about an author, that they have wonderful sentence structure, or that their paragraphs are fantastically written. The major acclimation about a writer is about their characters and the excitement of their stories (plots). The method to write great characters and excitement is based in writing scenes. That is what you must focus on.
As you begin to write, make sure you have the basics down. I'll write more in detail about the basics of scenes tomorrow.
My Notes: once you have a theme, you need to begin to visualize your plot, focus your theme, and define your characters. More tomorrow.
I'll move on to basic writing exercises and creativity in the near future.
The following is a question asked by one of my readers. I'm going to address this over time: Please elaborate on scene, theme, plot, character development in a new novel creation....ie, the framework, the development, order if operation, the level of detail, guidelines, rule of thumb, tricks, traps and techniques.
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, http://www.aseasonofhonor.com/.