Heroes, Actions, and Consequences

This is a long video. With today’s online audience, a 12 minute YouTube might as well be 90 minutes. But it’s worth watching; especially if you are a storyteller.

I have a problem with my NaNoWriMo project, and this video is helping me figure out a solution. One that I think will improve the novel.

My heroes have secrets. These secrets are unveiled as the story progresses, which makes my heroes poor choices for my point-of-view (POV) characters. Having them be implicitly or explicitly dishonest with the viewer is at best a gimmick and at worst reason to put the book down forever.

So I need new characters to provide the POV. How do I do this without obscuring the story? How do I add a new character with him or her just being a prop? This video demonstrates how; I use the POV character to explore the impact of my heroes’ actions.

It’s going to require some juggling to get the character where he or she needs to be, but it’s making me consider my plot in a completely different light, and I like it.

Here Comes NanoWriMo

National Novel Writing Month 2016 (NaNoWriMo) is almost here. If you’re not familiar with NaNoWriMo, it means what it says; write a novel in a month. “Writing a novel” means a 50,000-word first draft, but the criteria for success is up to the participant.

I am participating for the first time this year. I’ve decided to set my ongoing project, the book about my grandfather, and work on a fantasy novel that’s been banging around in the back of my mind for a couple of years.

When I started to focus on the book about my grandfather I was worried about making it my first project, and I was right: it’s too personal, and the plotting is a little tricky.

The fantasy story, which is primarily (but not only) about a character named Johann Hehl, is a bit more straightforward and less personal. I think it’s a unique take on the genre, but I suppose most authors start out saying that.

50,000 words are a lot in a single month, and I will need to prioritize the book over the blog. I’ll do my best to check in and at least post some quick updates.

Is anyone else participating this year? Let me know in the comments.

Monday Miso

What could I possibly add to the greatest TV commercial ever made?

Actually, I can add one thing: I launched a new blog, Puttering About, over the weekend. It will be a place for me to write articles and tutorials about various technology topics. Take a look!