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
There are lots of approaches to scene setting. That means there are about a million plus ways you can set a scene. The main point is you have to clearly get across the where, when, who, what, and how.
Here is another example of scene setting from the novel, Aksinya. An author sets scenes within scenes. Here is another example that shows the setting of when, where, and who in the middle of another scene. This example has an interesting scene setting device. In it I used a dark setting to convey the demon entering and surprising Aksinya. This works for movies, there isn't any reason it shouldn't work for a novel. Note that the setting is dark and shadowed. It is also Aksinya's new room.
After supper, Aksinya and Natalya returned to their rooms to study at their desks. The gas lamps provided barely sufficient lighting—their rooms were filled with shadows. Natalya had already prepared Aksinya for bed. Aksinya sat in her silk nightgown with a sweater over her shoulders.Aksinya struggled with one of the problems in mathematics. She was about to give up and ask Natalya’s help when she heard the door to her room open and close. She didn’t turn away from her desk right away. She was immediately happy that the Lady Natalya felt comfortable enough to come to her room without knocking.
The bed behind her creaked. Aksinya gave a happy sigh. She was about to turn around. The voice of Asmodeus startled her. It dripped with sarcasm and animosity, “Hello, Countess, did you forget about me?”
Aksinya put her hand to her throat. The scent of sulfur filled her nose. She paused a moment before she completely cleared her features and slowly turned, “Demon, I told you to knock first. I am your master. You show me great disrespect by not waiting for my summons.”
“You show me great disrespect by not accomplishing your purpose.”
“I have done all you have asked me—you have not obeyed my instructions in the least.”
The demon snarled, “What instructions are you talking about?”
“I wanted my mother’s and sister’s jewelry. I told you more than once.”
“It just slipped my mind. I shall bring them in the morning.”
“I’ve heard that before from you.”
“Then I shall bring them tonight.”
“That would suit me better.”
“Now to my complaints.”
“How can you have any complaints at all? As you insisted, I traveled to my uncle and aunt’s. I came to this school. I called a servant. I have been the one doing your will…”
“Exactly, and I have more for you to do.”
Within this scene setting are some great examples of showing. For example, I show you that Natalya is very good with math and Aksinya has problems through the initial setting. I also give you more information about the demon and Aksinya in this way. Scene setting is not just about the scene, it is also about showing important information about your characters, the plot, and the theme.More 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, www.thesecondmission.com/, http://www.theendofhonor.com/, http://www.thefoxshonor, http://www.aseasonofhonor.com/.