Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Note to Self

Things to remember to blog about soon when I have time:

* First person narrator dictating style through psychological word palettes;
* From Deep Structure through omission to resulting words - importance of omission stage and its effects on style (and its importance in defining first person narrator) - choosing what to observe and what to omit.
* Descriptions: How word palettes can imbue a potentially static (momentum-less) passage with anticipation (again!) - word palettes as concealed foreshadowing devices.
* Plot vs emotional topography - prioritising and observing interactions.
* How all the above points work together!
TBC ...

Friday, 5 September 2008

Swelling the River

I'm sure you'll agree, there are plenty of these milestone moments for the writer: moments of clarity when yet more puzzle pieces fit together (and there is a veritable armada of pieces!). I call them blue banana moments.
I wrote of blue bananas some eighteen months back, of a desire to investigate, to poke at povs and pacing, to prod at characterisation and nvc, and so forth. Let's never forget, though, (and I suspect that I did) that these are simply tools.
Tools to what end?
The last 10,000 words have gone without a hitch, and have been extremely enjoyable to write.
What has inspired this transformation?
Clear scene structure derived from motivation: connecting every paragraph to either goal, obstacle or means; fixing the protag's motivation steadfastly at the centre of the novel.

Sure, each paragraph is chiselled with the tools, using each tool to bond and emotively engage the reader. But when the functionality of each scene is clear in the writer's head, everything else becomes a technique that may be chosen to extract the most from the scene's purpose.
It's a bigger picture.

Practically, what this meant to me was that every thread flowing parallel to the protag's motivation thread has now fed into that thread. The motivation thread takes precedence over everything, and everything feeds into it, like tributaries feeding into a river. And, as each tributary feeds into the river, the river grows and becomes more powerful. Some threads would not tally with the motivation thread, and so they have been cut. (Q. Why would a writer want to include a thread that makes no/very little impact on the protag's journey, especially when that thread could be replaced with one that does?)
Each confluence becomes a magical event. That thread which seemed so disparate - a capricious aside - suddenly transforms the protag's journey in some way at the moment it connects, perhaps as a reversal or a reveal. And the remainder of the journey will bear this thread, will be coloured by this silty union.