12 January 2009

Some Brewing Story Alternatives

  • John Drucker meets his grandfather, Francis, at a bar at age 21 and discovers the "family secret."

  • Johannes Gutenberg packs the forms for his typeface and flees Mainz ahead of the invading army headed to Bamberg.

  • John Drucker explains to Madeline Zane the importance of the rare book she has brought to him just before an explosion rocks the building. John flees with the manuscript chased by Madeline, who thinks he has stolen it and set the library on fire.

  • John Drucker is merrily chatting up Maddie as she goes to get the manuscript he wants, only to find a dead body in the vault. John becomes a suspect because the manuscript is missing.

  • We start exploring the relationships that John has with his mother and with Maddie as reason for why he is so obsessed with a supposed mystery.

  • Intellectual puzzle in which everything is about telling the story of each piece of the puzzle and then pulling it all together at the end.

  • Thriller in which John is on the run from the first chapter and we have to keep backing up to get the full story.

  • Literary piece that is all about the relationships that are cemented or fal apart because of themystery obsession.

  • Historical fiction all set in 1430-1468 about Gutenberg.

  • Urban fantasy in which John Drucker is Gutenberg who is still alive because he is an alchemist, a la Nicolas Flamel.

  • Mystery in which John Drucker, detective, is called in to solve a series of crimes surrounding libraries and uncovers the Gutenberg mystery at the same time.

  • 3rd person omnipotent - best for 1, 3, 4. Would also work for 2.

  • 3rd person limited - only follow John with possible telling of things he knows about. That would work for 2,3,5,6.

  • 1st person narrative, best for 2,5,6.

  • Narrator who tells story with self-reference. For example, told by a different character - Maddie, Grandpa, or best friend.

I rather like the last idea, but I've very little in the way of referents for it. I'm finally beginning to understand what P.R. meant when he said he could work for a year on a book just trying to get the right voice. I'm going to do a little research on P.O.V. and voice. I'm sure there is lots of info on it. I need a refresher course.
  • Here's another possible opening: John Drucker is twenty steps away from the library - leaving it - when a bomb goes off throwing him to the ground, knocked unconscious. When he wakes up in the hospital, Madeline is sitting beside his bed. Rather than sympathy, however, she wants to know what he's done with the manuscript he stole before the bomb went off. Only problem is that he didn't take it.