marycatelli: (Default)
There's a shipwreck.  With my heroine and her companions on the ship.

Now, is it just before the story opens, or does it open the story?
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marycatelli: (Galahad)
There's a heroine who has to have a power, and it has to be the ability to drain life. . . .

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marycatelli: (Rapunzel)
Amazing the things that pop up when you go from outline to first draft. . . like the vast importance of magical specialization.

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marycatelli: (Strawberries)
There's a fantasy world of mine where clouds form shapes in the sky.

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marycatelli: (East of the Sun)
there's a large difference between a character recounting a fairy tale within a story -- and a character recounting some backstory that happens to be a fairy tale because they live in a fairy tale world.

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marycatelli: (Strawberries)
Sent the young scholars off to a Christmas fair.  Well, they had to do something more Christmas-y, and a fair would work.

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marycatelli: (Strawberries)
You shouldn't slap a significant detail into a story and then forget about it.  If you give a character background and motivations, the readers expect that character to be more than wallpaper for one scene, if you have a newspaper and mention titles, the readers expect at least one article to be significant, if you plant a gun in the scene, the readers expect it to be fired -- and by the end of Act 3.

That  goes for themes too.  Some issues can be touched on -- just as some details can , but others need to be grappled with, or ignored entirely.

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marycatelli: (East of the Sun)
So -- the fairy tale does indeed go into the fire.  I don't know where it's going to be told, but it will be.

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marycatelli: (Rapunzel)
Ah, the fun of discovering a story's theme only on revision. . . .

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marycatelli: (A Birthday)
Ah, a name with a meaning.  Rose.  Honor.  Mort.  Drake.

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marycatelli: (Roman Campagna)
Once upon a time. . . .there was this knight.  Now he's still a knight -- an eldritch knight, haunting the crossroad.
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marycatelli: (A Birthday)
Sitting down to write from an outline means re-reading what I wrote months ago.

And when a knight appears on the field full of rhetoric about how he fears encroaching time and wishes to be as bold as possible before then, I go hmm -- yeah, that's central to his motive, but I didn't develop how others react to time.  I ought to do that.

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marycatelli: (A Birthday)
Was pondering again a question on writing on what you feel passionately about -- and remembering that I had written on it before.

So I dug it up here and realized I was thinking of stuff I had not mentioned before about the dangers of sitting down at the typewriter and opening a vein.

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marycatelli: (Dawn)
Inspired by a post observing how rarely works of fiction describe philosophy as good. . . .


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marycatelli: (Default)
I have written, in general, about the folly of bringing your god on stage.  I have observed, recently a particularly silly form.

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marycatelli: (A Birthday)
For, dear me, why abandon a belief
Merely because it ceases to be true.
Cling to it long enough, and not a doubt
It will turn true again, for so it goes.
Most of the change we think we see in life
Is due to truths being in and out of favour.
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marycatelli: (Dawn)
Another problem with abstract ideas over moments is that the moment tend to announce their location -- beginning, middle, end.  Even when you have hashed your concept down to conflict, they do not necessarily lead to an order.

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marycatelli: (Dawn)
Usually my muse starts with a moment, from which I have to build back and forth to the beginning and ending.  Occasionally just back or forth. . . .which has its problems.

Then, there are the other times, where the idea is somewhat More Abstract.  Sometimes purely aesthetic -- if you tweaked Romeo and Juliet so that the twosome realized their only chance lay in escaping the stupid city, could you make a comedy of it? -- sometimes delving into other philosophical matters -- would one of those "mirror universes" where morality is inverted really work?  Which have their own problems, and I think they're the worse.

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marycatelli: (Dawn)
Recently read -- I remember not where -- an account of a panel where someone said that you should not preach in fiction, and an editor who declared when better?

To which I must respond, quite possibly, Never.
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marycatelli: (Default)
One needs to have a lot of respect for cliches.  Nothing gets to be a cliche without good reason, because without good reason, it would not get used over and over and over and over again. . . .

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