Monday, August 16, 2010

A work in progress

The inspiration for a fiction work has appeared to me over the last few weeks.  I think it's a novel.

I've done a time line, a general outline and developed the main characters.  I've written the introduction and a few scenes.  At times, I can escape in thought to the world of this book and watch a scene happen.  If it works with all of the other elements, I go write it and place it in.

When I was a kid, the world of Barbies was my creative outlet.  Early on, there were intricate social plots.  As I grew up, I began to enjoy the setup more than the actual play.  I liked to create still scenes of living, working or fun spaces for my characters to enjoy.  Once the scene was set, I was happy.  The Barbies looked happy.  Maybe they worked out the plot elements while I was asleep.

I fear that my current conception is weak on plot.  The setting (or settings) are great and vivid.  The houses and buildings where life takes place are actual characters in the story.  There is a plot, there is movement in the story, but it's not the central thing that I expect to grab a reader.  It's the lifestyle, the setup that appeals to me most.  I have used the characters, the setting and the family dynamics to illustrate some concepts and convictions that I'm passionate about.  There is a message.  Yet, I've worked them in subtely, I hope, so that it does not come across as prescriptive or preachy.  But, the reader will learn and grow along with the characters.

Perhaps this work is more like a painting than a movie.  It may lack movement that would draw readers.

Here is my dilemma:  Do I stay true to the scenes and threads that come to me in the quiet times?  Or do I "kick it up a notch", as Emeril says?


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