1. Adalla
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    Adalla New Member

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    Atlantis Academy - feedback appreciated

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Adalla, Jul 16, 2008.

    Greetings all. First of all, I'd like to introduce myself and then I'd like to introduce the novel I'm working on.

    English is not my native language, and I've never really gotten any good grades in English classes at school, and yet I've always had a passion for writing. Quite ironic eh? Over the years I've created some fantasy role-playing sites, and got a little experience writing that way, but other than that I've never really written, except I'm known to make long deep posts on some forums.

    I can say I've had quite a blessed and unique life, traveled a lot and experienced a lot, and I wanted to share my vision of life with others based on my own unique experiences. I've always wanted to write an auto-biography, but that's not what I'm here to talk about. The other novel I always wanted to write is one that deals with an analysis of our current human society, looking at our past, present and near future. I'm most fascinated by the evolution of mankind, by science, parapsychology, new age spirituality and other subjects related to the study of life and mankind in general.

    Well lately I've narrowed down my list of ideas for a possible novel, and I came up with Atlantis Academy, tentative title for my novel. It might change as I write, but for now I'm sticking to it.

    In a nutshell, the novel will be set in our near future, around 2010 to 2030 AD, and it'll be a novel with a lot of realism mixed with fiction and some science fiction. So basically, it's not a Science Fiction novel, it's not Fantasy, it's got elements of both these genres, but it closer to reality than not.

    This presents my first problem since it seems to me that it'd be easier to either write about our own world realistically, or to write about an entirely fictional fantasy world. So it's a bit challenging to mix fantasy, scifi and realism all in one novel.

    Also, I have a pretty clear idea of the general subjects I want to tackle, the things I want to bring to the reader's attention, but I have very little idea on how to develop an actual story.

    My last issue, is that my tendency would be to focus on too many characters, locations and events. I mean, I've seen this done elsewhere. The TV show "Heroes" is a fine example. With like a dozen major characters, and at least half a dozen seperate plotlines throughout the story that weave in and out of each other, with characters going their seperate ways and then then meeting again.

    Ok, I better ask a question to make a response easier for you folk. Would it be feasable to have several Points of View, multiple characters and plotlines, from a variaty of locations all making up one big story? Or would you advise to focus on one or two major characters, and have the story revolve around them only, with only very brief parts with other people's points of view?

    Thanx

    Adalla
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Writing with multiple points of view requires more skill and practice than writing from a single point of view.

    In my personal opinion, characters are the most important make-or-break component of a story, assuming you have decent spelling, punctuation, and grammar (SPAG). Sentence structure can be adjusted during revision, plots can be adjusted, added, and removed, but if your characters have no vitality and appeal, repairing them tends to change everything. You probably want to focus your efforts on a small number of characters, so you can take plenty of time creating and getting to know each one.

    I have a recent blog entry relating to point of view, which may or may not be helpful, What's Your Point (of View)?.
     
  3. tehuti88
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    tehuti88 Contributing Member

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    There's nothing wrong, IMO, with lots of characters/plotlines/points of view, BUT, it's difficult to pull off without getting confusing. (I know that I often wonder if I confuse my readers!) You have to keep really careful track of everything, and find a way to tie it all together at the end.

    If writing such a big project is something relatively new for you, I'd suggest sticking with just a few major POVs for now. You can always redo the story at a later time to include more viewpoints and characters and plotlines, or you can do that in a different story.

    In fact, you can just start out with a shorter, but possibly related, story to your main story (this would be called a "sidestory"--I write short sidestories for my long main serial, for example, focusing on the backgrounds of individual characters). When you finish this you might be able to determine if you're ready to tackle more characters at once, or if you should still stick with just a few.

    If you decide to go with a lot of characters, make sure to keep track of things! You'll also have to invest a lot of time in getting to know all of them so they have a purpose in the story.
     

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