In-depth project 5
Project type: writing a novel using first person narration.
Big goals: write a minimum of ten chapters and however far I end up writing by march 23 should be at least 25 thousand words ( half of the minimum amount of words that a novel should be) and to have both a first draft and a second draft that includes good character development and detail for a fully immersive world.
Last week I had said that I wanted to minimum complete chapters 9 and 10 by next blog post for my goal of having a criteria meeting rough draft by March 23. I have started chapter 14 this week and have fully completed chapters 9-13 with a word count of approximately 31 thousand words, surpassing both of my length goals. I have also named chapters 10-12.
I think that the rough draft contains adequate detail “the first draft is getting your idea out on paper, the second draft is for making it look like you knew every detail and piece of plot the entire time” (quote Michelle Bettauer, my mentor). It also contains great character development and character arcs, that include reveals, backstory and character traits. this week we switched focus a fair amount and started talking about false climax and developmental questions. a false climax is like a climax, but it happens earlier in the book and typically the antagonist wins. “ it’s like when you see a fight scene in a movie, and go wow that was so cool, that must be the end but, there’s still an hour left in the movie, and you get kind of confused because you thought that was the climax.” ( quote my mentor) false climax are good for character and plot development and really help with the reader having more of an attachment to a character.
Developmental questions are the who, what, when, where and how’s that you use to make laws for the magic in your fictional world, readers can suspend some disbelief but the magic does have to have boundary’s that are spelled out or at least touched upon in the novel.
Frustrations and obstacles.
I’ve really just be struggling as my book Is nearing its climax. I have multiple different ideas on what might make for an interesting climax and am having trouble deciding on which one fits best with my plot. I have to clear a lot of hurdles since there are requirements with the outline of a climax and it has been a bit frustrating to figure out what I want my climax to be.
My project has basically stayed the same, I’ve surpassed both of my first draft goals so, I have made a new one. By the end of in-depth I want my novel to be 35 thousand words. Based off my growth of previous weeks this may not seem like a lot, but much of my focus in the coming weeks will be going in to editing and not writing new plot points.
Evidence of progress,
Chapter 2 of my book ( rough draft)
- Chapter 2
- Musical interlude
- As we pulled out on to the high way headed north: I put in my ear buds and it drowned out the noise of the car and my parents talking a fell into my world of music.
- I checked my phone “no new messages” sign popped up on the screen, I quietly laughed to myself; you’ve lived in the same town your whole life yet no one even knows your gone
- “funny movie kiddo” my dad asked.
I took out a headphone “ sure dad”
he seemed a lot calmer now that we were on the road, maybe he was like me, indecisive till someone makes you do something, then it’s the best moment of your life, that’s why we needed my mom she ran in head first, she had moved to America by her self when she was 18! Only four years older than I was, I took comfort in that, if she could do that, I can do this.
We drove through only forest for a long time, not passing anything other than a few rest stops, an old dinner called “the pine tree” and a motel that was actually called “the rest stop” with a bunch of z’s coming out of the rest on the flickering neon sign, I guess the word “rest” was asleep,
we’ve been on the road for what feels like hours but according to my phone had only been about 90 minutes. So, I started scrolling through old photos; most people had pictures of them and their friends by the side of a lake or at a mall, or wherever other teenage girls hung out, I had very random pictures of forests, the skyscrapers from Milwaukee and a picture of a juice bottle for some reason unknown even to myself.
I ran out of pictures pretty quickly but I felt cramped in the back of the car; I tried to read but it made me feel sick so I tried to open a window which still did nothing,
I want to crawl out of my own skin just so I can move, but in this stupid hot car I felt worse and worse so, I wanted to get out and run around on the side of the road but my dad said we were on a tight schedule, what schedule! I thought to myself, the moving truck wasn’t coming to black pine till 8 or 9 and it was 10 am!
my mind started to wonder about possibility’s, maybe the neighbors were going to through us a welcome party, was that normal? I’d never moved before, I didn’t know how other people reacted, would there be chips? Because I was starving; I honestly don’t know how moving works, maybe we had to do something to set up the house before the movers got there?
I was letting my imagination wander and as I looked out the window I started to dream about the forest, it looked so open and cool, I saw a deer poke its head out of a bush and watch our car go by,
we put animals in a zoos, just so that we could observe them and see them, but I wonder when animals are in the wild, do they stare at us in our cars like we’re in the zoo?
my mind drifted to all of my thoughts, I thought about gardens and tree houses and milkshakes. this was when I think I started to drift off.
I don’t really know how long I was asleep for I just know that when I woke up, it had gotten brighter out, it must have been 1 or 2 by now ,
I rubbed the sleep out of my eyes and squinted at something in the trees, a glittery star was hung off a branch “ hey mom?” my voice still sounded groggy “ what was in that tree”
she turned around to face me “ the star?”
“ uh huh”
“ sweety that’s to mark a drive way it’s hard to see them through the trees so people hang stuff off of the trees In front of there houses”
I sat bolt upright “ are we in black pine!?”
she smiled “ well the out skirts at least”
some one might as well have glued my face to the window I wanted to see everything even if it was just a bunch more trees “ hey dad”
“ yes” he said
“ how many people live here”
“ is there a school”
“ how many students?
” “30 ish”
“ what does the house look like”
“ safina we’ll be there in a few minutes, no more questions” he was clearly getting nervous,
he was humming blackbirds by the Beatles he always did that when he was nervous.
we pasted another star about 5 minutes later, then two minutes after that then one minute after that! They were getting closer together till we hit the main road,
ok road was a stretch, it was dirt with no trees or brush; we pasted a few stores but nothing that looked like a house. then we pasted the school, it was about 3 minutes from the nearest store and was definitely in the middle of the forest,
we kept going down the dirt road until we got to a blue star on a tree, my mom checked her phone “ this is us” she said as we turned down the drive way.
we went for a few minutes down a winding drive way, and then I got my first glimpse of the house; it was tall and made of dark wood, it looked colonial era and had a spire on top. all of the windows were shuttered and ivy was growing up one wall, it was the only clearing in a massive forest.
I put my head out the window I smelled strong pine and dirt “ this is home” said my mom, suddenly my stomach dropped, I felt like I was about to throw up, this was home we weren’t going back to Milwaukee this was where I lived now, it was the middle of nowhere, there was no super markets, no McDonalds, no high-rises. What if everyone here hated me, I bet forest kids are rough what if they killed me, my mind was going faster than the car was, it was a like a dream as the car stopped and I grabbed my bag and went inside, it was a blur,
as I walked down the long entry way and up the dark spiral stairs holding the curved railing like my life depended on it; a voice broke my trance “ Saf your room’s the second on the left” my dad yelled. Ok deep breath, only a few more steps I turned and walked through the door.
The room was made of the same wood as everything else, the rug in the middle of the room was a beautiful dark green and the bed had a canopy with dark green mosquito netting,
light came in from the back where there was a arched green stained glass window with a pine tree in the middle as well as a large picture window,
I dropped my bag on the bed and walked over to it all I could see was trees I looked at the ground, first I saw a path leading away from my house the I noticed a rope ladder hanging out of my window, good, an opportunity to just run and not be cramped anymore,
I ran over to my backpack , ripped a piece of paper out of my note book and scribbled out a note “ going out to explore the grounds – saf” I dropped the note on the bed and climbed out the window, down the rope ladder and started following the path.
A website about false climax’s.
A collection of sources on writing character emotions and arcs.
Discussing false climax’s (some statements were slightly edited for length and clarity)
White hat: I think this qualified as me using the white hat since I asked for the hard facts of using false climax’s in writing like, what’s their purpose or when should I use them.
C: I believe the purpose of a false climax is to give the reader a taste of what’s to come later in the book, is there more to false climax then that?
M: yes so that’s the base idea, you think it’s the big thing and then you realize There’s more to come but you can also use it to help the reader build more attachment to your character.
C: when would I use that, when does it apply?
M: you might use it to build tension, a few chapter before your climax.
Red hat: I think I used the red hat here since I expressed my emotional interest that has come from other books/movies in using false climax’s.
C: using false climax’s seem like a good Idea for reader attachment, I definitely want to use these in my book (here I shared the idea of what chapter in my book I would put the false climax and what it would be)
M: yes ok I get why you would want to have a false climax there, I like this idea, that works really well for the limits of a false climax, it also speaks to your characters growth.
The above mentor comment I think plays well into the black hat, we spoke about how the false climax I had decided on played into my story’s theme of trusts and plot twists. My decided on false climax both fit the values of my book and of a false climax. This was something both me and my mentor agreed on.
Green hat. My mentor asked about a different solution/ novel design that would hit the same goals, I did bring up a few but I still plan to use the false climax. I think it fits best with my book
M: what could you do instead of a false climax?
C: I could try a false defeat, or moment of weakness of the characters?
M: yes those do work. you might want to try more of a reveal, like you find out There’s a new villain.
C: ok so I could use a reveal instead?
M: yes, this adds a new level of narrative which is often useful.
C: that sound cool, but I think a false climax works best with the placement and character development in my novel.
Yellow hat. I think this is an example of the yellow hat since we agreed that using false climax’s would be better for everyone’s time and was a good use of my time.
C: I think what would make everyone’s effort worthwhile is that false climax, it could really help build a connection between the reader and the story.
M: yes, this is definitely worth spending time on because as well as reader and story bonding it can really help with character growth which is very important to the story. It’s a simple tool of raising tension and stakes, it’s not mandatory, but a false climax is definitely worth spending time on.
The total focus of our conversation was false climax’s and how useful they can be in a story to shoe characters in a new light, to allow character growth, build suspense and develop a reader character bond.