Monday, January 22, 2007

Onwards and upwards

I no longer have an excuse. My writing on the Viking one now has to start a pace. I have suddenly done my calculations and to get the ms to my editor when I had planned, I need to really work hard. All the extra time has rather been eaten up by me dinking around and not really concentrating.

I will admit to having been slightly stuck on one part. I need to find motivations etc. Things should start happening now. It is a matter of discipline. And I am excited to be writing this one, it is just getting the main characters passed the call to adventure and getting them started on their adventure that has proved tricky.

Fiona Harper is currently going through the Writer's Journey on her blog. Her pieces have interested me enough to get out my copy of Volger. I have also been reading the man who inspired Volger -- Joseph Campbell --The hero with a Thousand Faces. Volger is more accessible for writers than Campbell. Campbell examines myths and legends to find communality And Campbell is a bit obscure. Though luckily, for my own piece of mind, I have read a great deal of folktales, myths and legends from around the world... but it can be a bit heavy going in places...
Volger applies his thinking to writing, in particular to writing screenplays. Volger is very useful for looking at structure. He, not McKee is the devotee of the three act story. However, McKee and Maass are still my favourites. Interestingly Vogler highlighted the Jungian aspects of Campbell's theory when Campbell highlighted Freud.. Is this because Jung and his archetypes have more to offer the writer than Freud?
Volger is also interesting as he has had a huge impact on Hollywood and the way stories are told there.

Now, if Campbell is correct and much of the mono myth is innate, should writers being trying to analyse and follow the structure or should they simply trust in their own skill? I do think there is something to be said for the first draft, and then going back to such tools only when things are not working...In other words, if you can identify various points in your adventure -- the call, the refusal, meeting with mentor, crossing the first threshold etc, you can possibly use it as a way to discover why the ms is flat or doesn't feel right. There again some of this just comes through experience. A bit like doing anything, the first time, you need to keep checking and then you learn it. It does help to go back and recheck every so often as bad habits do develop. And then it is head slapping time. However nothing can be done or attempted without a first draft and that is what I am working on now.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

lI am a great fan of Vogler and Campbell both. I use a lot of mythic symbols and journeys in my work as well.

If I may give you an invitation?

I am doing a Storyation teleseminar Saturday Jan. 27 that is free, plus an audio on my website.

Storyation = Create Story. This is not only for writers but for anyone living a life. You can create the story you want your future to be about and shape your life.

Here's what I have noticed:

If you are familiar with the Hero's journey, a-la Campbell, what I observe is that the path of anyone who is starting a business or writing a book or doing something Big in their life is walking the same path and faces the same challenges.

SO you, as a writer, are on your own journey as you create your book.

Does this make sense?

If you are crious to learn more, please go to to accept my gifts.

I am recording the seminar, of course, but I am not giving it to anybody who does not register.

I believe I can help you on your own journey, which is why I make this invitation. It is your call to adventure now!

Thank you so much for your attention and interest.

Ronda Del Boccio
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