Science Fiction Story Update 2012 August 5

I hadn’t planned to work on my science fiction story until later, but the ideas just poured out of my head this week. The story has a (tentative) title now: Heat Wave. I’m taking a slightly different approach to how I write this time. We’ll see how that goes.

Through out the week, I wrote my ideas, along with some dialog and description to use in the story in to my notebook. Later in the week, I started to work on the story itself. I decided that I should write the story in first person.

Most of my stories have been in third person because movie scripts are in third person. It wasn’t until this week that I realized that all scripts are in third person. I don’t think I’ve ever seen or heard anyone point that out. Even when you use a voice over to have a character describe how they feel and what they think, the script itself is still in third person.

About a month ago, I did an outline, but my concept of the story changed since then. I did a new outline. I gave the characters names and then I started to write parts of the story.

Normally I work from a general outline and write each scene in proper order. This time I decided I wouldn’t write them in any particular order. The main reason is that I have some very clear ideas about some scenes, including the final scene. For the other scenes I had only a vague idea what I wanted to do. As I finish scenes I expect to think about the other scenes, and that way build up into a complete story. So far, that approach seems to work.

I transferred what I’d written in my notebook with a voice recognition program. I think that sped up the process. I think the words flow easier when I speak them aloud. The voice recognition isn’t 100 per cent accurate, but I think I caught most of the problems. I got about 1,400 words of the first draft done so far.

I used Celtx for my story. It has some useful features. The “index cards” make it easier to move blocks of text around. Celtx was originally for movie scripts, but it does have a novel option. I used it on Bright Freedom and it was a big help there.

As I’ve thought about the story, I’ve started to realize that there are some parallels between the story and some of my personal experiences. I’ve altered the story a bit to take advantage of that. Recently I’ve read several books about H.P. Lovecraft. Despite his stories being weird fantasies, they point out where he has incorporated his personal experiences into his stories. Most authors do that to some extent, but it helped me see that I could use my experiences in this story.

The books I read were. H.P. Lovecraft: Against the World Against Life by Michel Houellebecq, Lovecraft: A Biography by Lyon Sprague De Campe, and Lovecraft: A look Behind the Cthulhu Mythos by Lin Carter

I don’t plan to push ahead on this story. When I get ideas, I will follow them up. I had some more over the last few days, so I’ll likely do some more work on it this week.

Pierre Berton suggests that you read a good story before you write. I wasn’t sure what would be appropriate for my story. Yesterday I decided that I would read Earthlight by Arthur C. Clarke. I read the book back in high school, so my memory of it is a bit fuzzy, but I think it would be a good influence on my writing. In particular, the narrator is similar to how I see mine.

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