We talked yesterday about using your personal emotions to allow a story to develop. The idea was to think of a topic that brings about emotion, and then use that emotion to form a story. This method can be used with any emotion or affinity.
Let’s say that I hate bunnies. I mean bunnies are the bane of my existence. If I could get rid of them, then the world would be a better place.
This is a facetious example to show how my emotions about a particular person, place, thing, or idea can be used to generate conflict. We don’t even have to go the with the “fantasy-genre” killer rabbit story. Let’s take your everyday innocent bunny. You know…the ones with the floppy ears and the fur that just makes your fingers tingle. Yeahhh….those kinda’ bunnies. Continue reading →
So it’s Friday, and on Fridays we get this little thing that we expect, and it’s called a paycheck! TGIF (Thank Goodness It’s Friday). Without that check, think about it, our entire world would crumble. Who would work, except for those who absolutely loved their jobs? Who, I ask you?
The resolution of your novel is your paycheck to the reader. And, man o’ man (or woman o’ woman), you owe her big time. She sat down with you while you rattled off your fictional anecdote which may have lasted for days. Continue reading →
The first step to getting a premise is admitting that you don’t have a premise. Once we recognize this, then we can work from here. We need to be able to conjure up something though. There has to be a way. One Worder describes the idea of developing a premise from a basic level, but I’d like to go beyond that.
Coming up with a premise can be as simple as thinking of a phrase that you want to investigate. Your premise is your narrative thesis that you want to fictionally prove to be true.
The last post we talked about how to use the premise to impact the conflict. Now we want to use the premise to impact the climax.
What’s the difference? The conflict relates to your day-to-day activities, but your climax is your paycheck — the very reason you get up to go to work in the first place. What happens if one friday your boss comes to you and says: “Sorry, I can’t pay you this month”? Continue reading →
The premise is essential to the story. Without it, the conflict is not maximized. The “good vs. evil” effect is moved out of the way and replaced by the mediocre.
Consider this premise: Women should be treated like queens. If the story goes along and everyone is treated like a queen, that gets the job done, but no one will read the story. You would have been better off wasting your time playing video games or doing something else rather than taking the time to write a novel.
Every story should have a premise. This is different than a plot or a conflict. Plot describes what is happening. Conflict describes why it’s not happening. But premise. Now that’s something that it’ll take a moment to sink our teeth into. James Frey in How To Write a Damn Good Novel says that EVERY story, if it is to be published by a company, must have a premise.