A Satisfying Plot: Theme

I really like this blog post – agree with what he says about the importance of theme. I recognise the process he describes, moving from suspicion to appreciation, very well.

paulgapper

On my first novel writing course we were asked what we liked in books. I said, ‘Where things happen and people have sex; but they don’t have to have sex as long as things happen.’ Recently, I was delighted to hear that a friend’s child had explained her love of Downton Abbey as, ‘It’s olden times, and things happen.’ Exactly!

What I disliked most was the idea of theme. It sounded so writerly and Hampstead. I was once in a bookshop where there was a reading being given by new novelists. The first stood up and said, ‘There are three themes to this novel.’ I left.

But recently I’ve been wrestling with trying to put some shape to a novel I’ve been writing on-and-off for about two years. There are lots of little mini-stories, a main character, and fairly decent set-up. But it all feels a bit amorphous. Mostly, I…

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About Leila

Author of Chips, Beans and Limousines and other books for children and young people. Director of Megaphone writer development programme: www.megaphonewrite.com

Posted on April 14, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Christina Steger

    Hello,
    My 14-year old daughter is a HUGE fan of your books, and has many of them on her bookshelf. She is desperately trying to find an actual copy of ‘Emeralds and Ashes’, the only book she is missing is the series. The book is not available to actually purchase in Canada. We can only purchase an e-book. Since she is not allowed a computer or tablet, the e-book is not an option.
    We have searched libraries and second-hand book stores, but have not had any luck. Will this book be republished in the future? I am sorry to use up your space on your blog, but I am do not know how else to contact anyone about the publishing.
    I would like to thank you very much for creating such wonderful stories. For the young people who love to read – you give them such happiness and relaxation! It is lovely for me to watch my daughter read your books, and even better when she brings me up-to-date each evening after reading.
    We can’t wait to read your books in the future.
    Many thanks!! Keep up the wonderful work!

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