11 January, 2012

Thick, Rich Consistency

Writers' Wednesday!!!

You can probably name dozens, if not, hundreds of examples of inconsistencies you've found in your life. Books, movies, television, songs, and even commercials are full of them.

That doesn't make it okay for you to use them. The more fictional your story is, the more important the act of writing material you don't publish becomes. Don't be the writer who thinks s/he can just keep track of everything mentally. The mind has a way of contriving and conveniently changing facts when ever it realizes your hero should have been able to turn into a sconce all along. It's too late now.

And for the love of Tebow and everything that is Holy, do not be the writer who thinks everything s/he wrote to keep track of details and special rules needs to be included in the final draft. They have a name for this: exposition dump. Emphasis on the dump. If you suspect that a chunk of your writing might could be called an exposition dump, give yourself a swirly and say ten times, I am a waste of this water.

Where was I? Oh yeah ...

Don't worry about whether or not your rules are debatable if they are consistent. Some readers/audience want it spelled out, drawn in a picture, and wrapped in a bow. (Lite subtext, please.) I find that more people want to have enough information to put it together themselves. Makes them feel smart.

How do you know when there's enough information? Easy. Plenty of people will be reading your work before it gets published. Right? Right?! They will let you know when you don't have enough. But, they won't always know when you have too much.

I have five different notebooks going with separate purposes for the novel I'm writing. I refer to them and previous pages constantly. And I add to them regularly. I have no idea if any of that stuff will ever be published, but it sure is nice to have on hand.

For now, it's Wednesday in Oklahoma, but Tuesday in California? Should I wait to post? Can I feed my mogwai?

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