IT’S A NEW DAY! NEW MONTH! NEW YEAR!
FILLED with Expectations!
Way back in my memory files there is a quote I’ve preserved attributed to a fella named Aristotle. He wrote an essay titled Rhetoric examining the art of persuasion, which is (of course) every writer’s goal—to persuade every Reader that their book is a must-have. Aristotle says, “A good style is, first of all, clear. The proof is that language which does not convey a clear meaning fails to perform the very function of language.” Keeping the concept of clear language to convey clear meaning as a priority can be a challenge when a writer is FULL of excitement about the story that is bursting forth and demanding to be written.
SO—after you’ve selected the book/story you’re going to complete this year (from last week’s exercise), here are a few thoughts to help you with the element that gives me the biggest headaches: PLOT. Logic is needed to develop an excellent plot! LOTS of LOGIC!
It is said that Aristotle was the founder of “formal logic.” Well, he may have used clear language to inform others of the (clear) meaning of logic, but he certainly wasn’t the “founder” of it. Logic was being used since the beginning of time and whether your characters are pre-historic, historic, modern or futuristic, then you must develop their story using the logic behind their actions and reactions to the conflict/events you’ve given them. Author Charles Swindoll says, “We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” Now, that is an excellent definition of utilizing multiple PLOT elements.
In our universities today, the Science and Psychology departments utilize two basic elements of logic: deduction and induction. With deduction a Writer begins with a characters beliefs about the world they live in—that they assume to be true—and creates their responses to plot conflicts based on those “logical” assumptions. With induction characters develop theories based on deductive data that could explain their actions/reactions. However they are walking on thin ice never really certain what might be the best course of action. Excellent writers will weave these two elements throughout the story leading Readers on a journey that offers them “opportunities” to resolve “impossible situations” in their own imaginations.
In our publishing world today, the savvy Readers who purchase our books are demanding more clearly defined pieces to the story-puzzle. They want to be challenged! SO…
- DO YOUR RESEARCH! Discover the technical aspects of the plot/conflict piece you want to use and portray them accurately.
- BE WILLING to create the conflict “simply.” But don’t over-simplify. Your characters must face a realistic “opportunity” to resolve the “impossible situation.”
- Your characters must BE “real people” acting and reacting to these events. IF your imagination is operating in slow-motion, google key words from your conflict scene and see what appears in the “real” world. Learning how real people deal with events gives clear and authentic language you can use to portray most any event.
- The conflict/plot situation must trigger motivation from within your characters. If they could care less about what happened, so will the Reader.
Bottom line, the writing skills and abilities that you’re developing today will GROW as you use your own LOGIC—satisfy your own EXPECTATIONS—and write the WHOLE story that resides within you. KEEP WRITING and be ready to PUBLISH by year’s end. ⚓︎
|ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene has been writing something since before kindergarten days and continues to love the process. Through her small business—DOYLE WRITING SERVICES—she brings more than 40 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their projects. This is a nice fit as she develops these blogs for Outskirts Press (OP) a leading self-publisher, and occasionally accepts a ghostwriting project from one of their clients. Her recent book release (with OP) titled FIREPROOF PROVERBS, A Writer’s Study of Words, is already receiving excellent reviews including several professional writer’s endorsements given on the book’s back cover.
Royalene’s writing experience grew through a wide variety of positions from Office Manager and Administrative Assistant to Teacher of Literature and Advanced Writing courses and editor/writer for an International Christian ministry. Her willingness to listen to struggling authors, learn their goals and expectations and discern their writing voice has brought many manuscripts into the published books arena.