Monday, April 13, 2009

Setting the set

My writing style is a bit old school. I tend to make the setting part of the story, which isn't as common now. In the excerpt [below] from Kathryn's Beach, the playroom wall comes alive as it advances center stage for a brief close-up shot. It is never mentioned again, but makes the transformation of Saint Mark's Convent and School into Spirit of Hope Homeless Shelter have more depth. More of the convent is detailed in the excerpt from [again below] High Tide where Shasta leads Kathryn through the convent hallway to her secret passage.

Like Hemingway's, Old Man And The Sea, of course, I feature the beach as a character, especially in Kathryn's Beach. Since Kathryn is less dimensional in Kathryn's Beach, the beach takes on more moods and dimensions to fill in the gaps of a full bodied character that every story needs. I'll remind everyone again, Kathryn doesn't even have a last name in Kathryn's Beach.

As Kathryn travels through the trilogy, her character develops and the list of characters around her increases. This is especially true in High Tide where the cast of characters increases dramatically from the cast list in Kathryn's Beach.

In writing fiction, it is almost as if there is a formula to the balance of character elements with the other elements in the story. As the character side of the balance needs less from the setting to balance their weight in the story, the setting specifics diminish, as I think you'll see if you read Kathryn's trilogy from beginning to end.

While the speed of the story is a main feature in an adventure story, literary devices have to be employed more in stories, such as mine, that meander along in the telling. That is not to say that a good adventure story is less well written, which isn't the case, than a story-story.

As I find the focus of this blog, I will continue to share excerpts from the books, even the unpublished third book, Storm Surge, and discuss elements in the story telling process -- much like a director's commentary is done for a DVD. Hopefully, I will be able to enhance the reading enjoyment without tipping key elements of the story line with these excerpts that have not been posted anywhere else on the internet.

A good writer writes to the enjoyment of the reader -- not the publishing industry, not for their own satisfaction -- but for the reader's enjoyment.

Here are pictures of the setting in the trilogy.

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