25 April 2014, Writing Ideas - Vampire Novel, part 15, more Initial Scene
Announcement: There is action on my new novels. The publisher renamed the series--they are still working on the name. I provided suggestions as did one of my prepub readers. Now the individual books will be given single names: Leora, Leila, Russia, Lumiere', China, Sveta, and Klava--at least these are some of the suggestions. They are also working on a single theme for the covers. 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 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.
The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:
1. Don't confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don't show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.
All novels have five discrete parts:
1. The initial scene (the beginning)
2. The rising action
3. The climax
4. The falling action
5. The dénouement
The theme statement of this new novel is: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.
Really, messing up the initial scene is a classic failure in newbie writers. Many of the big failings are: a prolog, a non-action initial scene, an initial scene that is backstory. Almost any guide to writing will tell you, the first scene--the initial scene in any novel must be action packed and interesting. The best way to do this is the straight protagonist meets antagonist or protagonist meets protagonist's helper. That is you lift the initial scene directly from the theme statement. If your initial scene is not filled with action and adventure (or at least excitement), don't write the novel. I can assure you, a novel that is driven using a weak theme statement isn't worth writing or reading.
By definition, if the initial scene isn't exciting and doesn't relate the theme to the protagonist and antagonist or protagonist's helper, then the theme is likely not strong enough to support a novel. It is also possible for a writer to submarine her/his own initial scene.
For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites: