31 August 2018, Writing - part x602, Developing Skills, How to Suspend Disbelief, a Great Topic
Announcement: Delay, my new novels can be seen on the internet, but my primary publisher has gone out of business—they couldn’t succeed in the past business and publishing environment. I'll keep you informed, but I need a new publisher. More 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.
Today's Blog: To see the steps in the publication process, visit my writing website http://www.ldalford.com/ and select "production schedule," you will be sent to http://www.sisteroflight.com/.
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.
4a. Show what can be seen, heard, felt, smelled, and tasted on the stage of the novel.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.
These are the steps I use to write a novel including the five discrete parts of a novel:
1. Design the initial scene
2. Develop a theme statement (initial setting, protagonist, protagonist’s helper or antagonist, action statement)
a. Research as required
b. Develop the initial setting
c. Develop the characters
d. Identify the telic flaw (internal and external)
3. Write the initial scene (identify the output: implied setting, implied characters, implied action movement)
4. Write the next scene(s) to the climax (rising action)
5. Write the climax scene
6. Write the falling action scene(s)
7. Write the dénouement scene
I finished writing my 29th novel, working title, Detective, potential title Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective. The theme statement is: Lady Azure Rose Wishart, the Chancellor of the Fae, supernatural detective, and all around dangerous girl, finds love, solves cases, breaks heads, and plays golf.
Here is the cover proposal for Blue Rose: Enchantment and the Detective.
The most important scene in any novel is the initial scene, but eventually, you have to move to the rising action. I am continuing to write on my 30th novel, working title Red Sonja. I finished my 29th novel, working title Detective. I’m planning to start on number 31, working title Shifter.
How to begin a novel. Number one thought, we need an entertaining idea. I usually encapsulate such an idea with a theme statement. Since I’m writing a new novel, we need a new theme statement. Here is an initial cut.
For novel 30: Red Sonja, a Soviet spy, infiltrates the X-plane programs at Edwards AFB as a test pilot’s administrative clerk, learns about freedom, and is redeemed.
For novel 31: TBD
Here is the scene development outline:
1. Scene input (comes from the previous scene output or is an initial scene)
2. Write the scene setting (place, time, stuff, and characters)
3. Imagine the output, creative elements, plot, telic flaw resolution (climax) and develop the tension and release.
4. Write the scene using the output and creative elements to build the tension.
5. Write the release
6. Write the kicker
Today: Suspension of disbelief is the characteristic of writing that pulls the reader into the world of the novel in such a way that the reader would rather face the world of the novel rather than the real world—at least while reading. If this occurs while not reading, it is potentially a mental problem. To achieve the suspension of disbelief your writing has to meet some basic criteria and contain some strong inspiration. If you want to call the inspiration creativity, that works too. Here is a list of the basic criteria to hope to achieve some degree of suspension of disbelief.
1. Reasonably written in standard English
2. No glaring logical fallacies
3. Reasoned worldview
4. Creative and interesting topic
5. A Plot
We saw how the topic of the writing can potentially hold the reader in the suspension of disbelief. So, the question becomes, which topics will work best?
The ideas of the unique and unusual still govern the idea that a great topic can help suspend disbelief. Harry Potty is notably unique. The Hungry Games is a unique idea. The sparkly vampires, as much as I dislike them, are a neat idea. The unique and unusual sell literature. You can see this from the very earliest novels. It isn’t the mundane or the usual that works in peoples’ imagination. It is the unusual and the unique which excites them.
Just take a look at most Victorian literature. Dickens didn’t portray the mundane, he wrote about the unique and unusual. Oliver Twist and David Copperfield were not your ordinary subjects. Scrooge was not your ordinary person. Jane Eyre is a unique and interesting person as are the ideas in Pride and Prejudice. These are all topic (ideas) that are not normal in human society.
I’ve noted before that deus ex machina usually begin a novel. Most novels begin with a unique and special idea that is exclusive to that novel. The author then expands the novel from that singular circumstance. Almost all novels work this way. For example, Harry Potty is the child who lived. This is a deus ex that defines as entire series of novels. Oliver Twist was the child who was discovered. Tarzan was the child who survived.
I write novels that are reproduced worldview. I reflect the myth and supernatural ideas into the historical and real world. This has been called magical realism. I just call it a unique and unusual view of the world. This is my niche and my style of writing. I want to use this style and approach to drag my readers into a suspension of disbelief that they don’t want to leave. I want to capture them with my characters, setting, and initial scene and hold them in the suspension of disbelief until the last word of the novel. This is my goal, and one of the ways I attempt to achieve it is through an unique and unusual topic. My topics, I’ll repeat them are the supernatural, myths, gods and goddesses, magic, and sorcery. I throw these in as reigning topics in my novels. The novels use these ideas as normative because I am trying to hold the reader in the writing through the topic as well as the writing. This is the way you accomplish this and this is the way authors have been working this since the invention of the novel.
Of course, the topic or idea of the novel turns into the plot of the novel and this also holds the reader in suspension of disbelief.
For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, 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