20 October 2014, Writing Ideas - New Novel, part 193, Documents Legal-Historical Method and Other's Conversation, Methods of Revelation How to Develop Storyline, Rising Action
Announcement: My editor sent a round of emails last night concerning the back cover materials. That included the book teaser and the author bio. They looked good. They also sent the covers for the individual novels. I'll put up the covers when I can. The proposed 3 in1 cover and info can be found at www.ancientlight.com. I'll keep you updated. I should have three new books out soon.
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 my newest novel, Valeska, is this: An agent of the organization becomes involved with a vampire girl during a mission, she becomes dependent on the agent, and she is redeemed.
Here is my proposed cover for Valeska:
The purpose of a novel is to reveal the protagonist and usually the protagonist's helper, the author needs to place them in circumstance that allows them to reveal themselves. The means can be conversation, exploration, discovery, other's conversation, confession, accidental discovery.
There are three ways to know truth: the scientific method, the historical-witness method, and logic. All documents in antiquity are judged by a process that can be used for all evidence. This process allows the historian to grade and qualify historical evidence. As I mentioned, all documents in antiquity go through this process, however any piece of evidence can be judged using it. There are three steps in validating historical documents. The first is the bibliographical test.
The bibliographical test measures the quality and the accuracy of the document that we have. Usually, the bibliographical test is only applied to manuscripts. Manuscripts are hand-written originals or copies of documents. The method can also be used for printed documents. In the bibliographical test, we look first at the number and type of manuscripts that have been passed down to us. The most important thing that most people don't know is that there are no extant originals of any document written in antiquity. All the documents we have are copies. Antiquity is variously defined as from about 700 to 1400 AD. 700 is when we begin to get some originals. 1400 is when the printing press came into use. The number of manuscripts allows us to compare the differences between copies to determine the most accurate and approximate original. For most documents in antiquity, we have only one copy. That's too bad, but that's the way it goes.
The second bibliographical test is the nearness of the copies to the original. If the earliest copy is only 200 years from when the document was originally written, this is considered excellent. The average time of the earliest copy to the original in time is 1000 years. That's too bad too. Here's how the bibliographical test is used. Josephus' Wars has about 51 copies extant. The earliest copy is about 900 years from the original written in the first century. Compare that to the book of Luke. There are over 200 copies extant of the book of Luke. The earliest copy is about 200 years displaced from the original. Both of these documents were written in the first century. Josephus is a secondary to tertiary witness, while Luke is a primary to secondary witness. Compare these to Pliny the Youngers History which is a tertiary document with 3 copies and about 900 years from the original.
Your history professor should be giving you this data for every primary, secondary, and tertiary source she/he uses in your classroom. And remember, a tertiary source is not considered good history unless there are no other sources.
For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites: