Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Near-Death Experience! Fictional!

So there I was at lunch today, writing away feverishly at Chapter Two of the new novel. This chapter has been, so far, one long conversation between two men standing on the deck of a ship at sea. It was beginning to feel static to me (even though there's some excellent dialogue and the tension and conflict are kept high and the reader learns about the characters), so I decided that what I needed was some Action! In my last book, that always meant producing another corpse, but I don't so much want to kill off my two main characters in the second chapter, so rather than death, I opted for narrow escape from death! Action, character building, foreshadowing and symbolic irony all in one go! I know: genius! Anyway, there was some excitement on deck and now my main characters have gone below. I have only a vague idea what will happen there, but it likely involves a man named Corambus Polonius, who has strong opinions about a book called Nunc Scio Mysterium. This story, I think, gets cooler all the time.

Anyway, wordcountometer = 5816. Body count so far = 1.

11 comments:

  1. Wow, Scott!

    Just be careful that your action isn't there just to be there. You know, all those damned rules. Well, hang them. If you like what you've got, stick with it!

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  2. Anne: Yeah, that's right. Well, maybe not. But still it was a good idea.

    Michelle: No, it's not just gratuitous action. I realized after writing it that I want to set up a series of repeating events that contrast the character relationships, the action being someone in danger of drowning. I have two such events so far, and another one planned for a future chapter, and I think I'll keep using this event--with different characters each time--all through the book. Like I said somewhere, I'm working with ideas of symmetry in this book.

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  3. I like the drowning. I like the idea of the water. Like I said, genius, bloody genius.

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  4. Anne: Well, in theory it seems fine. It might all end up on the cutting room floor. Too early to tell, really. But the writing goes well and that's all I try to care about during the drafting phase. I introduced a character today and I like the way I've done his physical description. Every detail reinforces character (or so I tell myself). But again, sometimes these things look brilliant when I'm doing them and a week or a month later they just look like words on a page.

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  5. Don't know if you'd be interested again, I've got another excerpt posting tomorrow. Thursday.

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  6. I've yet to attempt the narrow escape from death. Only recently have I realized or been reminded that I'm actual in control of my stories. I think that's the key to writing narrow escapes. Sometimes I worry that if I start a scene like that, my characters might actually die.

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  7. The narrow escape is just like a death scene except that nobody dies!

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  8. I'm here via Anne's blog (*Hi Anne!!*)

    Anyway, great blog. I'm all for near death and actual death scenes. Action is always good in my eyes.


    ~Lola

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  9. Lola, thanks for stopping by! My last book has a bazillion death scenes. Some day I'll write something that's not a tragedy.

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  10. Pure genius indeed. The low body count sounds like an all time high for you. I'm sure your characters appreciate that.

    Good luck with your scene.

    ........dhole

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