Tag Archive - Time passage

6 Ways to Manipulate Time in Fiction

Today’s guest post is by Martin Cavannagh.

One of the least analyzed literary devices in literature is time.

Time works differently in books. It ceases to be the tyrannical presence that we know in real life and instead becomes a simple tool that the writer manipulates to tell her story. Every great story puts time to work for it on some level—many times, in a way that’s deft and creative.

Okay, so what’s the literary equivalent of Notting Hill’s famous “Walk through the Seasons” sequence in Notting Hill, you might ask? Well, authors have their own tricks up their sleeves when it comes to controlling time. Let’s take a look at them now.

Here are six ways that writers work around the clock to tame time in their stories. Continue Reading…

How Novelists Can Benefit from Using Cinematic Scene Structure

We’ve covered a lot of diverse topics in this mulit-month look at scene structure. I mentioned in January how weak scene structure is a plague in manuscripts, especially those of beginning writers. My goal here with this series—which includes in-depth (read: long) looks at best-selling novels’ first pages and back posts via the Throwback Thursday section—is to leave no writer behind.

Meaning, I want all of you to nail scene structure. Let’s make 2016 the year you never write another rotten, boring, nothing scene again. Deal?

It’s doable! If you haven’t read all the posts on Live Write Thrive this year so far, consider doing so. We’ve been using my scene-structure checklist on Mondays and my first-page checklist on Wednesdays. I’m going to have to come up with some new checklists after this—these two will be so worn out, I won’t be able to read them when we’re done! Continue Reading…

How Writers Can Create Continuity in Showing the Passing of Time

Continuity is so important in a novel. Readers should be able to move from one scene to the next without effort. Without struggling to figure out when the scene is taking place and how much time has passed since the prior scene with your characters.

Scenes are strung together, like pearls in a strand. Each should be flawless and beautiful and contribute to the overall effect of the story. One of the ways to ensure your scenes are strung together effectively is to examine the way you move from one scene to the next.

We’ve covered most of the items in my scene structure checklist since the year began, and I hope these posts are helping you to get scene structure under your belt. Faulty scenes are the most problematic issue I see in the critiques I do, and that’s why we’re taking time to go deep. Continue Reading…