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If a novel is one person's moral journey towards acceptance of their place in the universe, then the plot is contrived to give them a gift or gifts to help them on their way to which he or she is particularly ill-suited.
Nail those - the human flaw and the perfectly unsuitable circumstances - and you've got the essential irony that powers a novel.
A disaster story brings these into sharp dramatic relief. As one of my writers pointed out this week, the hero of the Jaws movie is afraid of water.
But there's more - it's not the flaw that's so important in the grand scheme of a disaster story, so much as the hero or heroine's gift.
The narrative path as outlined in The Five F's of story at The Novelry, finds its immaculately opposite form in a disaster story. The negative image. Perhaps that's not surprising, for is a novel is propelled by what the main character wants, in a disaster story it's all about what they don't want to happen.
I'm delighted to announce the publication of our very own Kritikme Krew member's novel - The Light Between Us by Katie Khan - which scored a five star review in Heat this week and is romping up the fiction charts. 'A bold new talent' says Matt Haig.
Published by Penguin's imprint Transworld this month, Katie began writing her novel with Kritikme in August last year.
As Katie said in her speech at the book's launch party at the Owl Bookshop last night - she was nervous about the 'difficult second album' but found it all came together. She thanked her family and friends and agent for support and has very sweetly thanked us in her acknowledgements too.
A writer needs a solid daily process, inspiration, encouragement and support.
Katie has a big day job, and writes bold and inspiring novels. You too can write like Katie - make sure you get the support you need!