Well in todays exciting instalment of how to write a novel in several hundred easy steps we meet Ben. Ben is my new mentor and editor, courtesy of those nice people at Cornerstones I mentioned last time. Ben and I have exchanged emails about life the universe and everything and I have come to the conclusion that he is an excellent judge of literary merit. To prove my point here is a quote from one of his emails.
“So here we go … first thoughts. I loved so much about this novel: the sharpness, invention and sheer liveliness of so many scenes convinced me you will be able to knock this into potentially publishable shape further down the line.“
Ok, that’s it folks , game over. Slam dunk to me, just send royalties to my house in the south of France. What, you don’t believe me gentle reader. You think I might be guilty of selective editing and embellishing the truth of the situation. Hmmm, OK there is a lot more and it’s all valid, well thought though and pertinent. But hey, let me have my small moment of victory and bask in a bit of “oooh, it might actually come true”. There is a clue lurking in the “further down the line” bit. A long way down in fact. It appears I’ve just got on the train at Exeter having bought a ticket for Aberdeen, or possibly Hong Kong.
So what are we going to do first? Well we are going to discuss what is the primary genre I am writing in, as that will then inform how my hero develops/is motivated and bought properly to life. For the purposes of the discussion we are going to debate the merits of the adventure story vs. the thriller; something which I never even considered as being relevant when I started. I just had a story to tell. But the demands on the hero are very different. Why is this important? Well because the reader expects different things, and the readers are different too. For an example of what I mean, this article is a good introduction to the issues a writer needs to consider. Which I didn’t.
In other news, thanks to those good folk at WHQ I have developed a brand new wholly unrelated idea for another novel, set in a near future where mankind has lost all its accumulated knowledge and been cast back into a feudal society complete with a vicious religious order who are a cross between the Spanish inquisition and the mafia. More on that at a (much) later date. Oh I also have another slot on the radio for one of my short stories. That reminds me I really should update that part of the site with some of my recent efforts….
See You out there.