1. Justin Rocket 2
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    Justin Rocket 2 Contributing Member

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    Starting with a throwaway cast

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Justin Rocket 2, Apr 20, 2015.

    When I posted my first scene for my novel http://www.writingforums.org/threads/the-great-winter-scene-1-732-words.138552/ A Fellow Stalker recommended to me that I start earlier than this. I should start with the big search and rescue operation before the operation is put on hold due to the snow storm. I've been exploring ways to do this, but none of the characters, other than my main character, who might be present during the big search and rescue operation are present in the rest of the story. If I started there, I'd have this big cast of characters who would be present in only the first two scenes. Isn't that a bad thing?
     
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  2. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm confused. Is the suggestion to start earlier in that thread? Because I don't see it.

    As for whether it would be a mistake to have characters that are never seen again, I'd need more detail on what the scene would look like and why there would be a big cast of characters. If you're assuming that you'd go through the whole search and rescue in order, without skipping parts, I don't think that's necessary. Can you give perhaps a brief outline of that scene?
     
  3. Justin Rocket 2
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    Justin Rocket 2 Contributing Member

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    My error in the original post for this thread has been fixed. My deepest apologies for your time and confusion.
     
  4. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't think that you need a whole lot of extra detail and extra scenes. I think you could give enough background with very little. Here's what I'd do in my voice. It assumes many, many facts that I would of course have to research if it were my book.

    Luke hated this part. The part where they gave up, the "well, we did our best" part. The part where somebody died.

    This time, the decision was clear-cut--a storm was kicking in, and anyone left on the mountain would be lost. The coordination tent was full of searchers stomping off snow, searching for their belongings, preparing for their ride down the mountain.

    The boy--a child--had been missing for three days. There was no hope. But Luke still hoped. He couldn't shut it up.

    "Luke, it happens," said the Communications lead.

    "It's good that you care this much," said one of the veterans, the one with the red beard--Luke never could remember the names of the career Search and Rescue officers. "But it's over."

    The Belgian shepherd at Luke's feet whined dissent. He didn't want to give up either.

    "Yeah," said Luke. "Fine. Fine. I'll just get my stuff. C'mon, Coal."

    Luke and the shepherd left the tent, and Luke took the trouble for once--he was always forgetting--to secure the flap after them.

    "Finally," said the Communications lead, known as Harvey to those who could remember his name. He bent to unplug the radio. "I thought we'd be debating all morning..." He paused, lifting his head.

    The motor of a snowmobile.

    Going up the mountain.

    "Dammit." Harvey bent to plug the radio back in. "Dammit to hell."

    ---

    An hour later, Luke reached the point where they had been recalled, and looked around him. He had a feeling. Just a feeling.

    (Etc., etc.)
     
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  5. Justin Rocket 2
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    Justin Rocket 2 Contributing Member

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    Damn! One of these days I hope to be able to write that well.
     
  6. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    And another thing...the whole search has been called off because of the weather. It's started to turn dark. And they scramble a helicopter to rescue the kid? Surely, if the weather's too bad for ground searches, it's too bad for a helicopter?
     

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