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    A fledgling writer trying to find her wings.

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  1. FIRST ASSIGNMENT: write your story statement. Evade the increasingly unhinged scientists to free her father trapped in the astral plane. SECOND ASSIGNMENT: in 200 words or less, sketch the antagonist or antagonistic force in your story. Keep in mind their goals, their background, and the ways they react to the world about them. The main antagonist a man desperate to escape the astral plane having been stranded there during a failed scientific experiment. He feels abandoned and betrayed by his family following his imprisonment and as punishment for this perceived betrayal he had tormented them for years trying to coerce to help him escape. When he makes contact with the protagonist he is surprised it is someone new. He first attempts sympathy to persuade her, then uses her father’s presence in the astral plan as leverage and when this too fails he becomes increasing volatile and violent towards the protagonist and the other characters. The secondary antagonist is a military scientist working on a top secret project involving the astral plane. She masquerades as an astrophysicist and presents herself as a friend and advocate of the protagonist following the disappearance of the protagonist’s father. Her duplicitous aim has been to spy on the protagonist’s mother to gain insight of where the missing military documentation and equipment have been hidden. Her secondary aim is to the control the protagonist. As her cover unravels, the secondary antagonist reveals her heartlessness and ambition. THIRD ASSIGNMENT: create a breakout title (list several options, not more than three, and revisit to edit as needed). Mind over Matter The Beginning of Lemuria Lemurian Chronicles: Mind over Matter FOURTH ASSIGNMENT: Develop two smart comparables for your novel. And why? A Wrinkle in Time (Quintet) by Madeleine L’Engle – both protagonists share a similar desire to find their father to restore their love and belonging needs; to have their family restored and for life to return as it once had been. Also shared (over the quintet) is the one-only love between Meg and Calvin and my own characters (Abbey and Sam). Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken – similar narrative beginning that depends on events from years before (six in Darkest Minds and five years in my own story) and then time jumping to the current storyline when the characters are in their teens (15 and 16 respectively). Predominately based on adventure with their new/old friends where trust and boundaries need to be determined. Both stories involve some conflict with a governmental agency and how the protagonists can survive. FIFTH ASSIGNMENT: write your own hook line As a young girl attempts to free her father imprisoned in an astral plane, an unhinged scientist has plans of his own to unleash. SIXTH ASSIGNMENT: sketch out the conditions for the inner conflict your protagonist will have. Why will they feel in turmoil? Conflicted? Anxious? Sketch out one hypothetical scenario in the story wherein this would be the case--consider the trigger and the reaction. Abbey wants love and connection as she was rejected by her mother and abandoned by her father. She thinks that finding her father will fix everything; that things will go back to the way they were. What she begins to learn is that needs change and so can who she needs. At the end Abbey understands that love and belonging can be with friends, not just her parents and that she is ready to let go. Next, likewise sketch a hypothetical scenario for the "secondary conflict" involving the social environment. Will this involve family? Friends? Associates? What is the nature of it? Sam – the best friend and love interest. Both characters pretend that neither is attracted to the other so it doesn’t alter their friendship as it is paramount to both characters. In one scene, Sam comes to pick up the protagonist for school. She isn’t organised to go. As the characters have grown up together, changing in front of each other was sometime they had always done. Now it has new meaning. So when the protagonist goes to change shirts, this pushes the sexual tension of the scene. Bianca – meeting at the restaurant. Both girls share a history from five years ago. It ended suddenly and the protagonist does not understand why. In the scene, the protagonist is the server and Bianca enters increasing the tension. Bianca wants nothing to do with the protagonist (Abbey). She is rude, demanding a different servers stating Abbey’s incompetence as the reason. The protagonist is immediately angered by this response and when a new server is not possible this creates conflict. FINAL ASSIGNMENT: sketch out your setting in detail. What makes it interesting enough, scene by scene, to allow for uniqueness and cinema in your narrative and story? Please don't simply repeat what you already have which may well be too quiet. You can change it. That's why you're here! Start now. Imagination is your best friend, and be aggressive with it. The first setting is in modern day Hood River, Oregon. The town is described simply so that it does not overwhelm the reader when they are thrust into the astral plane. There is seemingly nothing important about the small town. The astral plane is revealed gradually over the story. At first introduction Lemuria (the astral plane) does not seem to have any form to it except an unending fog that covers surface. As the protagonists continue to visit the astral realm, more of the layout is revealed. Over the course of our hero’s journey, the reader discovers that with each failed scientific experiment, a mental piece of reality is sucked into Lemuria becoming a permanent fixture of the new landscape. Each time, Lemuria expands a new person, often another antagonist, becomes imprisoned in the astral realm making it a more dangerous place. There is an oak tree in the centre of Lemuria. Oak trees are meant to symbolise balance, strength and harmony. The ancient celts believed that the trees symbolised the convergence of the forces of nature and that they contained special powers. The Legend of Treochair is of a giant who came from the ‘Otherworld’ and shook a tree branch creating one of five sacred trees. This is where the Oak originated in the story.
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