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  1. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    More is more! Or less is more?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by GuardianWynn, Oct 26, 2015.

    I hope my random titles don't bother people. Okay. So plot. I am torn on a way of going about a scene. So I thought I would ask general feedback.

    Basic premise is about chapter 5-7 ish. The MC arrives home to find an intruder in her home!!!! The intruder did not steal anything and quickly ran away upon being discovered. On inspection, nothing was stolen and it appears that he was riffling through your journal. Meaning, he looked at your address book, your college progress report and your college class schedule and possible your diary.

    Two issues.

    1. Do I play this up or play this subtle. Technically the character will appear again and plays a role in the story, granted, a minor role. I am torn on whether or not to hide this and play him as little and hide details. Just the mysterious assassin that she never learns about. Or if it better to give the context. He is a master killer. Considered one of the best assassins in the world.

    2. Someone suggested switching POV into this character. Not revealing much about him. But going into his mind during the break in.

    My story is third person and throughout the story I will POV shift a decent number of times. This, though, would be the first and only time I would be inside the villain POV. I figured the shift, which by nature of not revealing his character, might be jarring, especially since it will be the first time and relatively early in the story.

    So my question on this issue. Is if you think it is a good idea? Why or why not?

    Third thing! Not an issue but just a curiousity of mine. How would you react if you were in the MC's shoes here and witnessed this? I suppose on reflection this is an issue. As I have reasons she can realistically call the police but also have realistic reason she might call the police. I suppose everyone is probably just gonna say panic and call the police but I still ask because that one time someone breaks expectation and says something unique is always awesome. :D

    Tagging awesome people!
    @Corbyn
    @Starfire Fly
    @jannert
    @Lea`Brooks
    @Lady Marmalade
    @rainy_summerday
    @ChickenFreak
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2015
  2. Corbyn
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    Corbyn Lost in my own head Contributor

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    Well, I guess I'm a little confused why a master assassin would break into a girls house to begin with. Meaning, he's a master assassin. He would've been given the target for some reason, which means he would've been very cautious. His goal being to get the job done and not get caught.

    Aside from just that niggling at me....

    If you had asked me three weeks ago, I would've answered differently. You see people in real life tell me I am intimidating. I seem mean. If I came home and found someone then, I probably would've grabbed a bat or shovel or something I could've used as a weapon, and made sure they were gone. Then I would've definately called the police. I've lived in multiple states and countries and typically alone. If something like that happens...you call.

    Now though, I do own a gun. It's only a .22 caliber, but if I came home now, and had access to it, even if I didn't have bullets...I'd bluff it with a gun, because people tend to think twice when fire arms are involved.

    But even then, I'd still call the police.
     
  3. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    You make a point. Let me dispell that nagging feeling.

    Why he is doing it doesn't much matter. Why he was caught can be explained a few different ways. The easiest being that he was under the impression that he had thirty minutes more but the MC just got home fast. He isn't truly caught. No fight happens. It like the moment you pressed the key in the door he heard you and ran for the window. By the time you saw him, he was half way through the window. He was gone moments later.

    So do you have any opinions on the premise of writing this scene in his POV?
     
  4. Corbyn
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    Corbyn Lost in my own head Contributor

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    I'd say don't do it if he's a minor character. The reason I feel that way is because your going to get more important info from your mc in that scene, than a minor character.
     
  5. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, not really. Being in his head means you see what he went to, such as her class schedule. I bet that is the real itimitating one. A master assassin looking at your detailed log of where you plan to be? Spooky! While what he is looking at is implied in the MC head. She didn't see, she just sees that he was looking at her journals.

    The trick is if it is done poorly, it could be confusing at first. Since it is going to randomly without warning jump to inside him breaking into the MC home.

    Oh. What about the other issue? Do you think I should make it known he is a master assassin? Or play it more in the dark and leave it a mystery who he is?
     
  6. Corbyn
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    Corbyn Lost in my own head Contributor

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    Play it in the dark.

    Also, it might be better to just hint at the things he went through. Instead of doing it in his head and your reader knowing for sure...


    Example: My mother came home late one night to find her porch light on. She went to work earlier in the day, and didn't leave the light on.

    When she entered, her dogs were wagging their tails, but not barking like usual. It was dark so she walked through the living room to the kitchen.

    She came in hitting the light, and found a pad of paper open on the table with a pen on top. She was thoroughly freaked out.....

    .........

    Earlier that day I went by my mother's house to measure three rooms to put in flooring for her for xmas.

    It was getting dark so I turned on the porch light while looking for the living room light. My cell phone died. I had to hunt for a pen and paper. After I measured, I wrote her a note and left it in the living room on top her tv. Then turned off all the lights before locking up, except for the porch. I figured it'd be nice for her to be able to see.

    The note read: Don't freak out. Nobody broke in! Just dropped by to say hi.

    .....


    My point in telling you these things is this: You have to decide which set of facts or events bests serves your story, and how you want your reader to feel. If I want my reader to be creeper out, I'd tell the events from my mom's perspective. If I want a funnier story, I'd do it from mine.... It's all just about perspective.
     
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  7. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    lol
    Except your example was from a innocent scene that was misunderstood in the wrong POV. While mine case is not innocent.

    So something like;

    She shouldn't be ome for a half an hour. Plenty of time to copy her school schedule. The window was cake walk. I had broken into systems as complicated as a bank valut. A common window I could practically do sleeping. For percission I used an electric scanner for the class schedule. Nothing is quite as useful as knowing where someone plans to be.

    While waiting I looked at her diary and her report card. She is a sweet kid. I will give her that, shame really.

    Suddenly I heard the sound of metal touching. The key! She was home already? The scans finished a minute ago. Time to go. She probably managed to see just my mask as I was slipping out. Oh well. Mission is still a success.

    Vs

    School ended early thankfully. I was tired. I decided to go straight home. I could hav sworn I heard a noise as I placed the key in the door. Opening the door I discovered an unknown man in my home!

    My heart skipped a beat as I panicked. What do I do! Before I could move he rushed to the window. I raced to try and catch a better look at him. He was gone. Looking at my apartment. Everything seemed to be in its proper place except my journals. Why woudl someone break into my home to look at my journal?


    Except I plan to write in third person. lol
     
  8. Corbyn
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    Corbyn Lost in my own head Contributor

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    But that's my point what do you want out of the scene, do you want to creep your reader out or is it more important for them to know how easy it was for him and exactly what he got
     
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  9. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't know that is why I am asking people!!!!

    :cry: lol
     
  10. Starfire Fly
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    Starfire Fly Member

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    Why on earth is he going through her journal? If this is connected to your other story, I'm guessing he's trying to discover something she's working on? That would also explain going through her college reports, yes?

    I would tell it from her POV. She realizes later what he was looking at because those are the only things lying tossed around the floor after he left in a panic at her return. Corbyn makes some really good points there, though, about how it might be told.

    On her reaction, she'd have to be wildly crazy not to run out screaming for help. He could be some violent lunatic. Safety would be the first concern, and then rage. I definitely think calling the police ASAP would be the natural response. I don't think any woman in her right mind would try to get any closer, even to get a good look at him.
     
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  11. Inks
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    First response - electric scanner... you brought that with you? Mental daggers appear everywhere! If you need to copy something and you got 20 seconds, use a copy wand. It fits in your jacket pocket and it takes like 10 seconds page... but I cannot image why such a thing would need to even be done in the first place.

    The best assassin in the world needs to break in to grab a girl's school schedule? Wow. I would have just gone for the GPS lock on her cell... people now a days are tracked beyond belief. Also, I find it far more creepy that you can track people going to the bathroom with such precision in their own houses.
     
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  12. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    Lets just say why he is doing this is a major spoiler but I still stand by that why is meaningless. As the question is how to write the scene. Not if the reasoning makes sense.

    My MC is a bit crazy, but wouldn't you need a closer look to give a good report to the police?

    So what about the other issue? Do you think it is better to play him up as mysterious and unknown or let it be known how wicked he is?

    LOL that is a decent point. But the girl forgets her cell half the time! lol Oh, wait, just broke the suspension of disbelif didn't I? Master assassin stealing girls journal? Fine. Magic? Fine. Alien invasions? Fine. 20 year old girl forgets her cell phone? NO WAY! lol just kidding. lol.

    On a serious note, he did look at other things. Not just her schedule, but in addition. A schedule tells him where she will be, not just where she is. Do you have any opinion of the issues?
     
  13. Inks
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    Inks Contributing Member

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    I do not keep my cell on, it is off unless I make a call. I go through 50 minutes in 3 months and my battery lasts for 2 months or more. Completely fine for me. Haha.
     
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  14. Inks
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    Inks Contributing Member

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    Oh and sorry, I missed the question Wynn... I really do not have an issue with the story or the plot, I am pretty abiding with gimmes and such.
     
  15. Corbyn
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    Corbyn Lost in my own head Contributor

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    I guess Wynn, the easiest thing to do would be to write both, and just see which you like better, which compliments your story better.

    It's going to be difficult for any of us to say what will or won't work, until you try it then let us read it :p


    Hint....hint...hint.....
     
  16. Lady Marmalade
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    Lady Marmalade Member

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    Whenever I have multiple ideas on how to approach a scene; dark, funny, different POV, etc. I usually write the scene multiple times in those different styles a pick whichever one I like best. This is because when a mood is theoretical it's harder to judge whether or not it will fit the scene and usually mood comes naturally from the situation.

    In any case just ask yourself why you have this scene in the first place, what purpose will it bring to the story, and how do you want the readers to perceive it?

    Oh and if I saw a guy crawling out of my window after getting home I'd probably stand motionless at the door in shock because a) we have alarms all over the house because my dad is obsessed with security b) I don't want him to hurt me and c) He's probably been caught on the video cameras since he's going outside. Annnd then I would call the cops and look over the video footage to see if I can describe him or see if he took a car.

    Yeah not very exciting, if it was one of my stories I'd probably have the character grab a katana and chase him outside or something. Fiction is way cooler when it comes to crime, real life crime is either dumb or horrific.
     
  17. Lew
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    Lew Contributing Member Contributor

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    Don't reveal too much in the initial encounter. Lead in with her feeling of complete complacency, then the sudden shock of finding her home space invaded. She doesn't know why, and the reader will want to know.

    Still not sure why her place is being invaded. Perhaps she accidentally picked something inadvertently, a "dead drop" meant for someone else that he needs. Develop that later, she doesn't know now, police won't be able to determine what it was.

    Call the police or not? A normal person would, because her first instinct might be the invader was after her personally. Investigation determines nothing taken, looking for something, what? No clues, or course no fingerprints, no broken latches or windows, not your average burglary but nothing to go on.

    Make the reader sweat!
     
  18. GuardianWynn
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    GuardianWynn Contributing Member Contributor

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    One aspect I am still curious on though is the issue of to go big or go small. Such as being mysterious and adding wonder to what happened. Or going big and shouting that the person is a master assassin. I ask from a potential readers point of view if you guys think it is better to be loud here or be more subtle.

    :D I still think why is irrevant to the problem but I can't resist answering someones curiosity.

    The premise is the woman witnessed a murder committed by terrorists. The terrorist are framing someone. So since she is a witness they are interested in her. But they are slow, catious. As the one that sent the assassin would say. "No need to act yet. We don't know how this witness will act. For now, let us be careful. Do some research. If we need to make a play, we will be well informed before that time."
     
  19. PapaGhanda
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    I think without a doubt you should definitely include the fact that the intruder was home and also make the reader aware that they didn't steal anything. Whether or not you should make the spotlight shine on this character and make the MC question their relation to them, or should it be on the fact that they had apparently gone through their personal information? It is tough.

    You have to ask yourself, is this character more important in the end as a relationship to the MC or as an action. What weighs heavier in your mind as a writer? Do you think you could trick the reader by leading them down a certain path to surprise them later? or is this characters impact subtle enough to just foreshadow and follow through.....
     

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