4 April 2014, Writing Ideas - Writing Science Fiction, part 244 Scenes in Plots
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.
I'm not giving this series up quite yet. I'll review some of what I've already described and tie it together.
Many of you might not like my method of outlining in scenes. The reason is that I write scenes based on a theme statement. The theme statement and my general ideas for the novel are what guide me. I don't make a detailed outline of the scenes or of the plot. I don't dissuade you from doing so if it helps you. If anything, I have written a chapter outline before. I don't like outlines, and I don't like the constraints of an outline. I know generally where I want to go, and I know the theme--that's enough for me. I do not allow any extraneous material in my writing because the focus is the scenes, the plot, and the theme. You might ask, how can that be? Here's how it works.
The first scene is usually set by the setting, protagonist, and antagonist from the theme statement. There must always be a reason for the antagonist and the protagonist to be involved--or the protagonist's helper and the protagonist. In my latest novel (not a science fiction novel), the protagonist's helper is a vampire (she is the reason for the novel), the protagonist is an agent for the organization (a group I developed for my novels based on MI-19 from WWII). In the initial scene, the protagonist and the protagonist's helper meet. The protagonist has been shot and is dying.
The initial scene of every novel must be action packed and filled with excitement--this is the scene that sets off the novel and that makes your readers decide whether to read your book or not.
For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites: