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Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Writing Ideas - New Novel, part 572, more Complexity Q and A

3 November 2015, Writing Ideas - New Novel, part 572, more Complexity Q and A

Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but the publisher has delayed all their fiction output due to the economy.  I'll keep you informed.  More information can be found at  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

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

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 26th novel, working title, Shape, is this: Mrs. Lyons captures a shape-shifting girl in her pantry and rehabilitates her.

Here is the cover proposal for Escape from FreedomEscape is my 25th novel.

  Cover Proposal

The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action.  I'm on my first editing run-through of Shape.

I'm an advocate of using the/a scene input/output method to drive the rising action--in fact, to write any novel. 

Scene development:

1.  Scene input (easy)

2.  Scene output (a little harder)

3.  Scene setting (basic stuff)

4.  Creativity (creative elements of the scene)

5.  Tension (development of creative elements to build excitement)

6.  Release (climax of creative elements)

I can immediately discern three ways to invoke creativity:

1.  History extrapolation

2.  Technological extrapolation

3.  Intellectual extrapolation

Creativity is like an extrapolation of what has been.  It is a reflection of something new created with ties to the history, science, and logic (the intellect).  Creativity requires consuming, thinking, and producing. 

One of my blog readers posed these questions.  I'll use the next few weeks to answer them.

1.  Conflict/tension between characters

2.  Character presentation (appearance, speech, behavior, gestures, actions)

3.  Change, complexity of relationship, and relation to issues/theme

4.  Evolving vs static character

5.  Language and style

6.  Verbal, gesture, action

7.  Words employed

8.  Sentence length

9.  Complexity

10.  Type of grammar

11.  Diction

12.  Field of reference or allusion

13.  Tone - how tone is created through diction, rhythm, sentence construction, sound effects, images created by similes, syntax/re-arrangement of words in sentence, the inflections of the silent or spoken voice, etc.

14.  Mannerism suggest by speech

15.  Style

16.  Distinct manner of writing or speaking you employ, and why (like Pinter's style includes gaps, silences, non-sequitors, and fragments while Chekhov's includes 'apparent' inconclusiveness).

Moving on to 9. 9.  Complexity

Complexity is related to the value of the unstated or the intentionally understated.  Complexity comes out of tension and release.

Number one, no matter what you intend to write, the work must be entertaining.  Let’s say it again—if you are writing for yourself, stop.  There is no purpose in writing for yourself.  Writing is an act of communication.  The purpose for writing is communication, and the only purpose for fiction is entertainment.  This is easily proven.  If someone doesn’t read the fiction because it is not entertaining, they will never get anything out of it.  No matter what you wish to do with your fictional writing, give up ideas of influencing the world.  Give up ideas of motivating or manipulating thought.  Give up any ideas of producing great intellectual literature.  If no one reads it, you have nothing.  Therefore, all fiction writing is about entertainment.  About communication—look at the purpose of writing.  Writing is about one human recording ideas and providing them to another human.  If this were not true, you could write in your own magic script and special language that no one else understood, and who cares.  So, first entertainment—as long as this is well understood, we can move to complexity.

The only purpose in complexity is entertainment.  If someone in the audience who reads your novel can understand some idea you placed in it, you have succeeded, but if it is a major plot point, you might only have one book fan.  Bad job.  Let me give you a limited definition of complexity.   

Modern complexity provides figures of speech, great word paintings, and jokes without drowning the reader in difficult words or ideas that require the author to explain—or that the author can explain within the context of the writing without damaging the plot or theme.  This is true and modern complexity in a novel—unstated, intentionally understated, and driven by tension and release. 

There is nothing wrong with including very complex ideas (and words) beyond or outside the sphere of your readers, but you must explain them.  If you must bend the plot or theme to explain a word or idea, you need to simplify.  Don’t worry, most writing is already too simple.  Most authors shouldn’t even consider making their writing simpler.  I’ll try to make this clear as possible.

More tomorrow.

For more information, you can visit my author site, and my individual novel websites:

fiction, theme, plot, story, storyline, character development, scene, setting, conversation, novel, book, writing, information, study, marketing, tension, release, creative, idea, logic

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