New Release Titles

New Release Titles
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Monday, November 7, 2011

Chit Chat and All That! is back, with Kiki Howell and Kim Faulks talking about Strengthening Paranormal Stories


Chit Chat and All That!
Authors: Kiki Howell and Kim Faulks
Subject: Strengthening Paranormal Stories


Kiki Howell:

Hey Kim, I know we both write paranormal stories and I was wondering what writing conventions or plot devices you use to strengthen your stories? And, does sex play a factor in the strength of the plot or not? Inquiring minds want to know…

Kim Faulks:
I don't plot at all. I get an image in my head of the character, the overall feel, and I just start writing. If I plot things out they don't sound as exciting as what it would have if I’d just typed. My stories always seem to work out. My characters reflect my mood or troubles at the time, and I usually sit and write as much as I can in that first instance to get the feel of the story for when I come back to it later on.

For me plot is about conflict. As I tend to write a lot of series, the conflict for me is over the entire series and the subplot for each story always moves toward the overall plot/issue for my main character. You need to ask yourself questions: What does my character need to achieve by the end of the series? What does he/she need to experience/do to achieve this? Sometimes the mere fact of the character experiencing a dramatic point in the story can move the story dramatically towards this point, as I say, it's all about conflict.

Erotica is not a big thing in my stories. I usually have more sexual tension and romance with my characters. The sex scenes are probably a little more detailed than the mainstream novels you get. 

Kiki Howell

Well, there are plotters and there are pansters. I think as authors we do what works for us to make our story the best it can be.  I do some of both depending on the story. I don't think it affects the strength of the story at all, as I've read some very powerful stories by authors I know who never plot, and vice versa.

So, sounds like you build the strength of the story with your conflict. How do you think conflict differs or can be amplified by having paranormal characters verses just mere mortals?

Kim Faulks:

Paranormal characters carry their own special issues depending on the creature involved. The conflict between the Paranormal and the Human element is where the story is. It doesn't have to be the romantic/erotic conflict either. It can be an internal conflict of the character themselves. In one of my stories Abandoned, the conflict is the race for my main character Eve to have her baby and escape the violent vampire that wants her dead. This story is filled with conflict. The conflict is the fight for survival for a mother and her baby. So even though there is the paranormal issues involved when writing Paranormal stories, the real conflict for me is the human element as I find that humans are the more complex creatures.

Kiki Howell
Hmmm, I'm not sure I agree there, I mean on who is the more complex creature. Each of my paranormal creatures, say vampires, werewolves, even ghosts, are all part human or have been human. The conflict, if this is where the strength of the story lies, is in the vampire trying to mesh his nature to kill and retain his humanity, or the ghost trying to gain back some semblance of humanity. With witches, trying to live among humans, as they’re still human, but their conflict comes in finding how far they allow their differences to go in controlling the world they live in. I think it is always the paranormal element, the way they are different in this world that adds conflict and thus added to the story.

But, besides conflict, I also think setting has a lot to do with the strength of a paranormal story. Heavy, mystical, descriptions, draw the reader into an other worldly place, tugging at their imagination. And, while my stories have been criticized for being hard to read and too descriptive for the erotic genre, I won't change. Call it literary paranormal erotic romance, but I like it real and I like it deep and dark. I like to feel I'm there, somewhere in life that is impossible to be. Plus, I like to expand upon the mundane with magic or super strength or blood lust or any other element of the paranormal world I happen to be dealing with.

Any other ways you add strength to your paranormal tales besides conflict or description?

Kim Faulks:
I guess it depends on the characters and the storyline for what part my Paranormal creature play on how detached with their humanity they are. I don't necessarily classify witches as a Paranormal. I see they have Paranormal elements, but overall they are still human. 

I guess the only other thing I can think of is the characters themselves, they basically run the story and dictate how much Paranormal elements are required to 'make them work' as a character. You can have a characters simple and quiet but it only takes a name, or a trait that will strengthen any story. Take Vlad in the Nighthuntress stories by Jeanine Frost. It is his name alone that strengthens his character and therefore the story. It's all about using what you know combined with what triggers the most response in a reader.

Kiki Howell:
I write both paranormal witch (which you are right are completely human, but still set apart as they can make it storm with a few words or shoot fire from their fingertips), but also reality based witches as well, so you are right, it definitely depends on the writers intent. 

Names, that is a good one. Sometimes it just takes forever to get just the right one, and I've had names change too as the story progresses.

Well, it was so great chatting with you today. I love to see how other authors not only approach writing, but how they see different aspects of writing too. I love to learn from others, and am learning and growing and plotting less these days and loving it. You've inspired me! Can't wait to read your stories.

About The Authors

Kim Faulks
A Paranormal writer who loves nothing more than to seduce my readers into a gripping tale of Vampires, Were's and Witches.
~where love is a mystical thing~ 

Stay tuned for next week's exciting and fun Chit Chat and All That! Monday 14th November with Casey-Lyne Johnson/Benjamin Russell, where they will be discussing:                                 
 "Can you tell your partner what you really want in the bedroom? Porn - pros and cons of watching it."


1 comment:

  1. Great chit chat never tried paranormal but it's something I would like to be able to do

    ReplyDelete