1. Mike Cornelison
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    Mike Cornelison Member

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    Term for the action reader doesn't witness

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Mike Cornelison, Apr 28, 2012.

    I chose music school over college, but would like to sound smart and use the right terminology when I'm asking questions here and I was curious . . .

    Is there a term for the action the reader has to imagine that's happening while the narrative is somewhere else? The action going on off-screen, or off-stage or . . .
     
  2. CrimsonReaper
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    CrimsonReaper Active Member

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    Not really. Off-screen or off-stage cover it.
     
  3. thecoopertempleclause
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    thecoopertempleclause Contributing Member

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    Off-screen is the more popular term I would think.
     
  4. Mike Cornelison
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    Mike Cornelison Member

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    Just kind of a self-taught guy here trying not to sound stupid, so I appreciate the replies, thanks. *heads off-screen*
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    The technical term is, "Meanwhile, in a dark hovel on the other side of town."
     
  6. Mike Cornelison
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    Mike Cornelison Member

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    lolz!
     
  7. thecoopertempleclause
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    thecoopertempleclause Contributing Member

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    Yeah, you'd never actually use "off-screen" in writing. "Meanwhile" would do just fine for that, but your initial post sounded like you wanted the term for use in general conversation.
     
  8. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    Meanwhile, back at the ranch?
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    This is, word for word, the phrase I was thinking of four posts above, but I decided to have some fun with it.
     
  10. Mordred
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    Mordred Member

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    Meanwhile, back at the ranch, aunt Martha is lying dead in a ditch.

    I had to add this... something my father would say in thew voice of an old style radio announcer. Meanwhile is a good word.

    ~Mordred
     
  11. Mike Cornelison
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    Mike Cornelison Member

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    I was actually talking about outside the book even, like the technical term, as in asking a question of your fellow writers, "I've got this scene and then while it's going on there's some action going on elsewhere . . . "

    Hey, there it is, the "action going on elsewhere".
     
  12. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If it doesn't appear in the book at all, it only exists in your imagination. If it is alluded to indirectly, but never fully exposed to the reader, it is a peripheral event, i.e. it lies on the periphery of the story. If it is a scene that is revealed eventually to the reader, either in it entirety or in pieces, it's a scene not yet exposed.

    If there are special terms for these cases, I'm not aware of them yet. They probably aren't that important to know.
     
  13. Mike Cornelison
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    Mike Cornelison Member

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    BINGO! There it is, I was starting to feel silly for asking, but . . .

    peripheral event

    That's exactly the correct terminology I was hoping to learn! "Scene not yet exposed," another good term to know, thanks!
     

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