1. Ray Burke
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    Ray Burke New Member

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    Joining of different elements?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Ray Burke, Jan 29, 2013.

    Hi all first time poster.
    Ive written short stories and done creative writing all my life. But ive always remembered a quote, "Write what you'd love to read."

    Im trying to write a romantic space opera but with a hint of the supernatural. I have world building, planets and creatures, technology and biologies all sorted, even histories with alternate histories for comparison. I just dont know if it all gels together or how to get it to gel better?


    I realise this post doesnt give much detail, but ive had ideas sniped on me in the past, no offense to members here.

    What can i do generally or specifically, to ensure a "smooth read" that captivates??
     
  2. Bimber
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    Bimber Contributing Member

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    well what i like is to start simple with a few hints here and there about all the new and unique stuff and expand it as the story goes, in other words you dont want to confuse the reader with all the new names and places and stuff all at once but go simple at first and give them a chance to get there feet on the ground, and let them walk and warm up before you make them run so to speak.
     
  3. tcol4417
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    tcol4417 Member

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    "romantic space opera but with a hint of the supernatural" - that's a hell of a bite to take. Chewing it will be no small task.

    I'm not sure there's any short answer that doesn't involve reeling it in a little: From the sounds of it you've got ten metric tons of LEGO blocks but no clue which ones to stick together first (it happens =P)

    I can only suggest examining how others have tackled the same material in the past: Mass Effect is an unfair comparison but the first that comes to mind. There's a massive history to explore, loads of different races and their individual biologies, political systems, etc. and an entire plot macguffin system of technology that utilises the "Mass Effect". You're at a disadvantage because as a game, the player can consciously decide whether to submit themselves to the (surprisingly detailed and entertaining) info dumps whenever they choose, whereas books are obviously a more linear experience.

    Best advice I can give: Start small. If you were meeting a Turk and a Greek for the first time, they might make small talk but be a little standoff-ish. Later you'll discover that historically, the two countries have never gotten along and distrust of one another has been passed down through the generations. Introduce external views on the matter, characters from each nation that break the stereotype (typically free-willed youngsters) and branch out from there. The same goes for technology, biology and everything else. The one thing that you must have - MUST have - is a plausible reason for dumping this info: In film this is usually typified by a character ignorant of all this information (Luke needs the force explained, Neo needs the matrix explained, and so on). This way their ignorance can fuel explanations. Obviously, you have to be more delicate than that, but there you have it.

    If you're feeling SUPER adventurous (and risky, especially from a publishing perspective), you can write the story with only the bare bones of information with a supplementary guide. George R R Martin has the noble family geneologies at the end of each of his novels, Mass Effect has the galactic codices and so on. The important thing is that your novel is fully functional on its own terms, but the details are available for anyone curious enough to ask.

    For instance, the Asari are an all-female race: It's possible for this never to come up in conversation during a playthrough and if you didn't care, you might simply assume that the male Asari were somewhere else. Likewise, the Krogan world is one huge ruin: War-torn, post-apocalyptic worlds are a staple of the sci-fi genre so you might not care that Krogan philosophy is heavily based around constant tests of strength. I personally don't care which noble family of Westeros is has a vendetta against which because it's middle-ages politics: Everyone's out for themselves. But if I wanted to study the history of vassals and whatnot, the info would be there.

    Good luck, in any case.
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    be [or become] a good writer...
     
  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    What maia said.

    Also, read lots of good writing.
     
  6. The Codex
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    The Codex Member

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    Take this for example. I'm doing this with my Fantasy Novel Series, create the world and then slowly present it. Readers will be confused if you just zapped them with places they have no knowledge on. Unless of course, you really take a paragraph or two deeply explaining that place and its history.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    which is how one becomes a good writer!
     

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