I've always believed that creative writing should have powerful narrative drive. Coupled with strong characterization and an eye-catching plot, it can be the major reason why a new writer stands out from the slush pile. It is the very stuff of readability.
|You may start your narrative|
in familiar territory…
Actually, there's a strong similarity. The word narrative might be ambiguous and confusing, but driving the plot of a story, or any other kind of creative writing along, is a pretty straightforward concept.
Perhaps the first step to feeling more comfortable with narrative is to search for a solid definition.
First from www.wikipedia.com ...A narrative is a story that is created in a constructive format (as a work of speech, writing, song, film, television, video games, photography or theatre) that describes a sequence of fictional or non-fictional events. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, "to recount", and is related to the adjective gnarus, ‘knowing’ or ‘skilled’.The word ‘story’ may be used as a synonym of ‘narrative’, but can also be used to refer to the sequence of events described in a narrative. A narrative can also be told by a character within a larger narrative. An important part of narration is the narrative mode, the set of methods used to communicate the narrative.
|Not knowing |
the direction you'll take…
Hmm...hope you're clearer now! Perhaps ths, from the Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms will help...A telling of some true or fictitious event or connected sequence of events, recounted by a narrator to a narratee. Narratives are to be distinguished from descriptions of qualities, states, or situations, and also from dramatic enactments of events. A narrative will consist of a set of events (the story) recounted in a process of narration in which the events are selected and arranged in a particular order (the plot). The category of narrative includes both the shortest accounts of events (e.g. the cat sat on the mat or a brief news item) and the longest of historical or biographical works, as well as novels, ballads, epics, short stories and other fictional forms.
A fair degree of agreement between the two sources, but for writers, the word narrative also holds a far more explicit and particular connotation. When refering to this second, more writerly sense of the word they usually are talking about the parts of fiction that are not dialogue-ridden scenes or action-packed descriptive moments in ‘real time’. – in other words the exposition of the story, which binds it together.
If you've been reading my Kitchen Table Writers Blog for a while, you'll probably know that I'm always encouraging new writers to 'show, don't tell', and exposition is the dangerous and difficult part of writing, because it certainly is close to 100% telling. But it's a necessary part; it's the string that holds the beads of your scenes, especially in a longer piece of work.
|at the mode of conveyance…|
This refers to the methods the author uses to convey their plot. Narration occurs because the writer is using the narrative mode. It encompasses several facets which multitask to create rich writing. Most important of these is narrative point-of-view, the perspective and view of the story; and narrative voice, which determines the manner through which the story is communicated to the author.
Narrators can said to be either non-participant or participant; i.e.an implied, omniscient or semi-omniscient being who does not take part in the story but only relates it to the audience, or an actual character in the story, often the main character or protagonist; and that participation can differ in substance, concentration and form. For instance, the narrator may be a fictitious person devised by the author as in the novel Autobiography of a Geisha by Sayo Masuda.
|Ane where your story will end...|