1. poy

    poy New Member

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    I don't know what to do.

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by poy, Dec 6, 2018.

    I'm writing my first book. Here's what I have so far: In a small town during the late nineteenth century, a handsome, wealthy man with no servants moves into a relatively large house that has remained unoccupied for a long time. The mother(a cook because meat symbolism) of the main character, who is sixteen, sends her daughter to the house to bring food to and greet their new neighbor while secretly hoping a bond forms between them and they get married. The girl greets the man, who is a little stoic, but mildly handsome and looks no older than his mid-thirties. Through various events, she becomes smitten with him. The people close to her begin dying one by one by various means, starting with her father. At the very end of the book, he proposes to her in his home and right after she accepts, he bites into her neck and kills her. The next chapter would take place from the point of view an old man who likes to go on walks in the morning. He finds the mangled, dead, naked corpse of the girl being eaten by crows(who will appear a lot in the story before this). The house of the gentleman will be abandoned. The girl is somewhat neurotic and judgmental.

    This idea started out as a sort of Twilight, "parody", but now I want to write something that stands on its own merits. I want to show the girl becoming morally corrupt and sort of, "falling". The vampire is an allegory for both sexual predators and vanity. Her increasing infatuation with the man will just have the veneer of a romance, while the story is in fact a tragedy. The problem is that i'm very ignorant and have no clue how to pull this off. Please help.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
  2. Philliggi

    Philliggi Member

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    Just write it.
    What you write at first will probably be a load of crap, make no sense and have more plot holes than you could begin to imagine, but it will give you something to work with.

    Go with the flow. Take each sentence as it comes and you will find it will complete itself.
     
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  3. poy

    poy New Member

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    Do you have any recommendations for research? I've read Dracula and Frankenstein. Do you know any good gothic romance? Any thoughts about what I have so far?
     
  4. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    You could try Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber also you could pick up some good fairy tale collections cause your idea sounds like it has a dark fairy tale quality. There's also a guy who analyzed fairy tales -- The Uses of Enchantment by Bruno Bettelheim he's quite interesting debunking a lot of theories that fairy tales are sexiest.
     
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  5. Thundair

    Thundair Contributor Contributor

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    I think you're on the right path. Let your characters drive the story along your plot lines.
    You might even write a summary to high-lite events and misdirection.
     
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  6. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll I'm in G-love with a Wonderful Lady. :) Contributor

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    A story is only a series of ideas and concepts,
    until you write it out with all it's actions,
    dialogue, and nuances. Then it will be a story. :)
     
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  7. exweedfarmer

    exweedfarmer Contributor Contributor

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    What you have so far is an idea, not a story. As for research... E. A. Poe
     
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  8. LoaDyron

    LoaDyron Active Member

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    First research about the style you want to write. People on this forum gave you good suggestions for books :)Try to see the concepts of the writers, what made them write the story they did. Secondly, write the story with everything, plot, dialogue, every idea that cross in your mind. Doesn't make sense? No problem, this is your first draft, so many stuff you will change or just cut it later. After you finish yes, you can start to readjust your story. Any doubts? Post here and we will glad to help you. Keep on good work and have fun :)
     
  9. Maggie May

    Maggie May Member

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    I've seen this story line before. Why no servants? That does not really make sense. The people he bites/kills could become his servants. The relatives of the girl now replacing the ones he brought with. Instead of him biting her and killing her, he goes in for the kiss and then to bite and she's ready with her blade and avenges the death of her loved ones. I think there is enough story there to charge it up! Go for it and have some fun.
     
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  10. poy

    poy New Member

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    Where have you seen it before? There's no servants because he's traveling in incognito. It's also a reference to Dracula, who also has no servants. I don't think you get the mood i'm going for. Most modern vampire media is contrived and too hot topicish. It focuses on powers and, "world building", rather than themes and feelings. I want a very simple, visceral story.
     
  11. Aled James Taylor

    Aled James Taylor Contributor Contributor

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    Tension is the key. There is plenty of potential for this in your story. Who is the strange man? What is his business? Why are the people dying? Why does she have such feelings for him? These are all mysteries the reader will want resolutions to. I'd play out the resolutions of these mysteries rather than have them all resolved with 'he's a vampire'. Give clues so that when you reveal what's been going on, the reader thinks, 'yes, of course, why didn't I think of that', rather than, 'where did that come from?'
     
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  12. Maggie May

    Maggie May Member

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    Witches of Eastwick has the same type of story line. Sorry the book I have read I cannot recall the name or author.
     
  13. jannert

    jannert Member Supporter Contributor

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    I totally support what @Aled James Taylor said, about building tension (and possibly mystery) around what the man seems to be like. Why is she fascinated by him? What does she 'see' in him, as the old saying goes. And how does he feel about her? Is he just manipulating her because he needs her blood to survive, or has he kept enough of his humanity that he might be falling in love with her and doesn't want to hurt her? Work on their relationship, and your story will stand out, regardless of whether aspects of the plot have been done before.

    Have you actually written any of it yet? You might want to try. Try writing a few of your favourite 'scenes' that you've thought of thus far, even if they are not in chronological order. It will give you a feel for your characters, and allow you to build your writing style.

    You're just (apparently) learning to write, so expect to make mistakes. Don't obsess over the mistakes. Just move around them and keep writing. You can correct mistakes after you've got your whole story written. It will take a while, and the editing can take many layers. But the most important thing you can do is get your story down, in writing. Then you'll have something to work with.

    Although I'm not a fan of vampire stories, I think there is a great deal of potential here, IF you focus on their relationship. Not in a 'romance' way, or even a 'horror' way, but focus on what makes the two of them tick, and make that lead directly to what happens when they eventually get together. The vampire obviously survives, but the key is how does he feel? Does he feel nothing at all, and this was just a manipulative way for him to get food? Or does he feel a flicker of remorse, or even a flood of remorse? Does he miss her? Does he wish things could have been different?

    Whose point of view are you employing to tell the story? The girl? The mother? Or even the vampire himself (which might be the most interesting choice.) You can see how making this choice will take your writing in different directions, can't you? Don't be afraid to take the most challenging route. It will open up ideas you haven't even thought of yet.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2018
  14. poy

    poy New Member

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    @jannert @Aled James Taylor
    Thank you both for your great replies. I have thought about these things a bit already, but I didn't mention them in the op. I'd like to put clues here and there to avoid a plain, "he's a vampire", reveal. I wont try to hide it too hard either, so that part of the mystery will sort of be tongue-and-cheek, but the rest is definitely something I want to develop. The whole idea behind the vampire is that he's a sadist (and basically a psychopath) who's actions are entirely unnecessary and done for enjoyment. More like a force of nature than a character. I guess even then he could be given some depth, but maybe there's an overemphasis on everybody being strongly characterized in modern writing. He kills people one by one to get the girl closer to and more invested in him, sort of like how actually psychopaths isolate their victims.

    He's the one responsible for everything. I want to go with the vampires are pure evil angle without directly stating it. What she sees in him on the surface is at first as shallow as you would expect from a Twilight-esque romance. He's handsome, sophisticated, wealthy, etc. As the story goes on I could develop that more into an emotional complex and hidden emotional need that reveals itself beneath the girl's exterior. Don't know what yet(parental emotional neglect?) I plan on doing it in third person limited because that seems easier to write. Is it? As soon ad I know that I'll try to make a rough draft of ch1. If any of this sounds dumb or dull, please tell me.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2018
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  15. seira

    seira Member

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    For me this idea needs a bit more complexity and seems a bit boring. It needs some mystery to it and some suspense. I really loved the idea about the family becoming his dead enslaved, that adds some darkness to it.
    I would focus on giving them some goals. Not just making the goal of the mother (to bring them together) and the girl be innocent and ignorant. Make it her ambition with a motivation behind it. Her ambition and greed lead to her death - give her a fatal flaw. Maybe even make it a little Macbethish and foreshadow her doomed ending. Apart from reading some Gothic Romance books do some research on the era you want to write in. There was a time when taking very life like pictures of the death was fashionable. Maybe in the end she discovers he's dead (or his secret) and he kills her to keep her quiet or better she doesn't die but becomes a slave to him. Used to lure other unsuspecting people for him to feed on. This could become very dark and fascinating but I think you need some time to do research, think and gather ideas. Abandon the Twilight stuff all together - the last thing we need is another mary sue smitten with a freak.

    Best of luck.
     
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  16. jannert

    jannert Member Supporter Contributor

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    I'm a lot more interested in his personality than hers, to be honest. She is a victim possibly because of her background of being neglected, but she doesn't sound all that interesting as a person/character. And to be honest, victims are often not all that interesting. Wrong place, wrong time, wrong personality, what a shame. I'm more interested in him. And the fact that you're portraying him as a psychopath—which makes him compelling. I would love to read this story from the point of view of the vampire. What is his mindset? Her mindset is fairly familiar—and kind of pathetic, to be honest. His is powerful and strange.
     
  17. Aled James Taylor

    Aled James Taylor Contributor Contributor

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    I'm intrigued by your story and would love to read a chapter or two. Please PM me when you have something presentable. Third person would be a safe bet, giving an overall view of events. First person would give a more immediate and personal perspective but only from the point of view of one character. It depends what kind of feel you want to give. With first person, you can only write scenes where the main character is present, which can be limiting. If you go with first person, choosing the vampire as the main character may be problematic. For the reader to relate the this character, they would have to understand his motivations and would know everything he did. For there to be mystery in the story, the reader would have to find this character and his actions mysterious. These two requirements contradict each other. Choosing the girl as the main character seems like a better option as her ordinaryness would be easily relatable and that which is mysterious to her would also be mysterious to the reader. Choosing the girl as the MC would cause a difficulty in the scene after her death, unless you write her as a ghost in that scene, which may work well. How about having her engage with the vampire early in the novel and in the final scene she realises she's been dead for quite some time?

    The book doesn't have to be about the main character.
     
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