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Sunday, September 8, 2019

Writing - part x975 Writing a Novel, Writing and Thinking

8 September 2019, Writing - part x975 Writing a Novel, Writing and Thinking

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  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 websites
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
Cover Proposal
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:  Deirdre and Sorcha are redirected to French finishing school where they discover difficult mysteries, people, and events. 

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:  Why don’t we go back to the basics and just writing a novel?  I can tell you what I do, and show you how I go about putting a novel together.  We can start with developing an idea then move into the details of the writing. 

To start a novel, I picture an initial scene.  I may start from a protagonist or just launch into mental development of an initial scene.  I get the idea for an initial scene from all kinds of sources.  To help get the creative juices flowing, let’s look at the initial scene. 

1.     Meeting between the protagonist and the antagonist or the protagonist’s helper
2.     Action point in the plot
3.     Buildup to an exciting scene
4.     Indirect introduction of the protagonist

The protagonist is the novel and the initial scene.  If you look at the four basic types of initial scenes, you see the reflection of the protagonist in each one.  If you noticed my examples yesterday, I expressed the scene idea, but none were completely independent of the protagonist.  Indeed, in most cases, I get an idea with a protagonist.  The protagonist is incomplete, but a sketch to begin with.  You can start with a protagonist, but in my opinion, as we see above, the protagonist is never completely independent from the initial scene.  As the ideas above imply, we can start with the characters, specifically the protagonist, antagonist or protagonist’s helper, and develop an initial scene. 

Let’s look at a subject that is really ignored in the modern era.  I’m not certain how much this can help your current writing.  I would argue that theoretically, this subject can really help those who write historical and futuristic fiction.  It depends on how your write your historical and futuristic fiction.  There are two ways to write historical fiction—let’s look at this.

The first and most common way to write historical fiction is to write a novel that projects modern ideas and history as historical ideas and history.  In other words to present modern ideas and historical ideas as the same.  I think this is perhaps the most egregious and perverse means of presenting a false view of history.  The author is either completely ignorant of the past, is intentionally attempting to education people in a false view of history, or both.  The real historical world is very different both culturally and socially from our current world.  The true author attempts to convey this in historical writing.

The second and less common means of historical writing is to actually incorporate the past into a novel to convey the actual way people thought and acted in the past.  This approach actually goes back into time to give a complete view of the way the people thought and acted.  To this end, let’s look at how the world changed and how people thought in the past.  This is more of a historical look at the world for the purpose of understanding how the world worked in the past and how people thought and acted.  We’ll use historical information to see what concerned affected their lives. Here is a list of potential issues.  We’ll look at them in detail:

1.   Vocabulary
2.   Ideas
3.   Social construction
4.   Culture
5.   Politics
6.   History
7.   Language
8.   Common knowledge
9.   Common sense
10. Reflected culture
11. Reflected history
12. Reflected society
13. Truth
14. Food
15. Money
16. Weapons and warfare
17. Transportation
18. Communication
19. Writing
20. Education

Gnosticism is the religion of the modern world.  In Gnosticism, science is the believer’s truth and nothing is real if it isn’t empirical.  Actually, I should backup a little.  In the beginning was animism then pantheonic paganism then mysterium.  Mysterium leads to science because of the observation of “secrets” that are predictable.  This leads to the idea of nature as a force or rather forces in nature. 

Spirits and gods are not required to make things happen.  That doesn’t mean there is no God.  As we have seen philosophy and science prove there must be a God.  What was happening with the advent of Gnosticism is the transition from mysterium to Gnosticism.  At the same time, there were two religions outside the normal evolution of religion: Christianity and Judaism.  Both Christianity and Judaism don’t conform in any way with the basic ideology of animism, pantheonic paganism, or mysterium.  Both look similar to a mysterium, but Christianity really looks like a mysterium, but doesn’t share the conceptual background of a mysterium.

If you remember the key characteristics of a mysterium are a secret that is only known to the highest initiates, the initiation to the mysterium and the levels of the mysterium are held in secret, and finally, the mysteriums have a singular god, a prophet, a meal shared with the deity, baptism, a new name, signs, symbols, meetings, full acceptance of people no matter their sex, state of freedom, and race.  If you notice, Christianity and Judaism share many of the characteristics of a mysterium, the main difference is that in Christianity and Judaism, there is no initiation levels.  In Christianity, there is no secret.  The secret of Christ is well known and shared with everyone: Christ has died.  Christ is risen.  Christ will come again.

The point is that in the age of the mysterium, suddenly, you have a very attractive religion that looks like a religion, but you don’t have to wait twenty years to learn the secret and it is very attractive.  Christianity was attractive because it appealed to all with a promise of adoption by the God and a messiah who was proven by the historical-legal method.  What this means is that there were apparently over 500 men who were eyewitnesses to the risen Christ.  The people of the first century accepted this as a truth and came to Christianity in droves. 

The mysterium of Christ had a secret that was known by all.  In addition, the mysterium of Christ called teen Hodos, focused on the psuche (thought) to control behavior and human actions.  If thought is the power behind human actions, then it isn’t fate (pathos), spirits, gods, or nature. 

This is why Christianity inadvertently caused Gnosticism.  Christianity taught and demanded that the members think and thinking was the power behind the world and everything in it.  The Gnostics didn’t misunderstand this, but they took the idea that knowledge was the power behind the world and everything in it.  In Christianity, it isn’t knowledge, it is thought.  You can have all the knowledge but not be able to think about it.

In any case, with Christianity, you had a group break away toward knowledge.  On the other hand, Christianity was all about thought.  At first, these were similar groups, but they quickly broke into two.  The Gnostics started as Christianity and moved away toward another entire worldview and belief structure.  At first, they were the same.

At first, the thinkers and philosophers accepted empiricism and reason.  At first, the thinkers accepted the scientific method, logic, and the historical-legal method as equal means to know truth, but something happened on the way to understanding.

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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