6 December 2014, Writing Ideas - New Novel, part 240, Characters and Plot, How to Develop Storyline
Announcement: My new novels should be available from any webseller or can be ordered from any brick and mortar bookstore. Information can be found at www.ancientlight.com. Check out my novels--I think you'll really enjoy them.
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: while on assignment in Gdansk, Poland, 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:
I haven't started writing yet, but I have a theme statement for my next novel: a girl in a fascist island nation will do anything to escape--a young cargo ferry pilot not following the rules crashes on the island.
This theme statement lends itself well to each part of the development of a novel. Note, there is a setting, a initial scene, protagonist, protagonist helper, antagonist, and the climax is obvious. Let's talk about each.
I'm actually using this blog to develop the parts of my newest novel. I'm currently in the second run-through for Lilly: Enchantment and the Computer. I haven't sent that novel to my readers yet. I am generally happy with it, but I had an idea for the novel represented by the theme statement immediately above. I mentioned the development of the initial scene yesterday. The next is the development of the protagonist. The big question is who is the protagonist and who is the protagonist's helper. We know the antagonist. Perhaps, the antagonist is the best place to go next.
The antagonist is the government of the fascist nation. I mentioned some ideas about the setting for the initial scene. The question is what does this fascist nation look like and will the antagonist be personal or impersonal? The question of personal or impersonal refers to whether the antagonist will have a real human face or be a generic bureaucracy. For example, if the supreme leader is the face of the government, that could harbor a personal antagonist. On the other hand, if the supreme leader is just a threatening person that represents the evil government, the antagonist is impersonal. Or if a singular person acts as the face of the government toward the protagonist, that is a personal antagonist. I'll delve deeper into the antagonist.
For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites: