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Saturday, June 1, 2013

Scenes - Scene Setting, Honeymoon Room

1 June 2013, Scenes - Scene Setting, Honeymoon Room

Announcement: My novels Sister of Light and Sister of Darkness are about to be published. I write this blog about 2 months prior to its publication. I just heard that the proofs will be here soon--likely before the end of the week. My publisher also wants to put the entire set of novels based on Aegypt on contract--that's 5 more novels for 8 total. They also want to put my other novels on contract. The release schedule should be one novel every 2 months. I'll keep you updated.

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

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 and select "production schedule," you will be sent to

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 many 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. I'm giving you examples from the book so you can see different ways of introducing and writing a scene. In each snippet, you get the scene setting, the tension and release, and the input and output. This isn't true of every example, but the pieces should be there, and I've been trying to identify for you when all the pieces aren't evident. You can use these ideas to guide your own writing. Make sure you set the scene properly, then make everything come to life through the narration and conversation.

Aksinya and Dobrushin move from the lobby to their room.  I provide some very important historical cover in the description.  In this way, I want the readers to see the historical world Aksinya and Dobrushin live in.  Additionally, we have the description of the scene which is their room.

Aksinya gave a broad smile.  The word, wife, from Dobrushin’s lips were very pleasant to her.  She held his arm more tightly. 

Dobrushin led her to the left and up the stairs.  Half the gas lamps had been extinguished and the rest were turned low.  In spite of that, the hall seemed bright since the light wooden walls reflected the lamps’ gentle glow.  Dobrushin stopped before an inner door and unlocked it.  The gas lamp directly inside the door had been lit, but it was adjusted to its lowest setting.  They entered the room, and Dobrushin turned it up bright.  He closed the door behind them.  He gently disengaged Aksinya’s arm from his and removed her coat.  He hung it on the hook by the door.  Then he removed his overcoat and hung it beside hers.  With the taper left in the gas lamp fixture for that purpose, he crossed the room and lit the other two gas lamps.  Aksinya stood before the door unsure what to do.  She glanced around the room.  It wasn’t large.  It had a coal fireplace at one side that was lit with a meager fire.  Extra coal sat in a scuttle at the left side.  The ash pot and implements were on the other side of the opening.  Before the fireplace were two chairs and a low tea table.  Beyond them, a wide window sat in the far wall.  Below the window was a wooden table and four chairs.  At the left was a bed and a desk.  The other two gas lamps were on that wall.  Fine oriental rugs covered the area of the fireplace, the table, and beside the bed and the desk.

Dobrushin pointed to the door on the left in the room, “There is the bath.  It has a toilet.”

Aksinya nodded.
At the last, Dobrushin took an open container of incense and placed it before the fireplace.  He lit it with the taper then fished in his vest pocket for Aksinya’s surety.  He glanced at her and then placed the necklace and locket on the smoking incense.  Aksinya could already smell the gentle bite of frankincense.  Dobrushin returned to the door.  He returned the taper to its holder.

Aksinya is slightly out of place here.  This is something entirely new to her.  We get a description of the place and the room. We have description of Dobrushin's actions.  The final action in this description is the surety.  This reminds us there is more purpose here than sleeping or lovemaking.  The plans of Aksinya and Dobrushin are to end the demon's contract with Aksinya.  We generally know how, but we don't really know all the details.  These are about to be played out before us.  We are building up the tension for a climax level release.

The following is a question asked by one of my readers. I'm going to address this over time: I am awaiting for you to write a detailed installment on identifying, and targeting your audience, or, multi-layered story, for various CS Lewis did. JustTake care, and keep up the writing; I am enjoying it, and learning a lot.

For more information, you can visit my author site, and my individual novel websites: http://www.aegyptnovel,,,, thefoxshonor, aseasonofhonor.

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