Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Afterthoughts Part 4 Assembling An Opening Scene


Part 4

Assembling An Opening Scene 

Afterthoughts haven't been indexed yet.

Part 1 


Part 2


Part 3 


One description of a novel: "Johnnie gets his fanny caught in a bear trap, and has his adventures getting it out." 

That type of plot starts with who Johnnie is, and what there is about him that needs the lessons getting his fanny out of the bear trap will teach him, (e.g. what he ever did to deserve this) -- then what he DOES (start with the action) that results in fanny getting caught.  What character trait caused him to make that specific mistake at that particular time.  

Thing is, the writer might not KNOW the answers to those questions -- and is writing the book to find out. Those are the kinds of books I like - journey of discovery, of innovation, and of character-arc.  Why is this happening to that character? 

At the end of the novel, the reader should understand the connections between apparently random events and the deepest elements of human character that attract those events out of the cosmos. The nature of that connection is the THEME, and the theme is the reason a particular reader, at a specific time in life, will enjoy reading this unique book.  

The theme is the reason you want to write the book, and the reason you want to write it is the reason the reader wants to read it. Craft that into the SHOW DON'T TELL symbolism of page one. 

Writing is a performing art - an ART.  The artist's job is to reveal hidden meaning.  

Here is an example from one of my own novels, DREAMSPY, that encapsulates a lot of information by unfolding an overheard comment - and the action the Main Character undertakes is to pretend she didn't overhear.  Here is a link to the LOOK INSIDE feature on Amazon.


Jacqueline Lichtenberg


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