[img]http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/PREMISE.jpgA high-concept premise can make or break your book-but not in the way you might think. It's not enough just to come up with a cool idea for your book. You also have to make it work onÂ every single page. Otherwise, no matter how cool it is, it quickly becomes theÂ wrong premise. The key to solving this problem before it even gets started is learning how to identify your story's premise-and more specifically the most important aspect of that premise-rightÂ out of the gates. Take a look at your premise. Do you know what it is? Is it present right from the first page? Good. That's half the battle. But what about the rest of the book? Is your premise driving your plot on every page? Does itÂ matter on every page? Or did it introduce itself in a flash of look-at-me coolness, only to realize a few chapters in, it really had nothing to do, and now it stands around twiddling while the characters pursue their adventures elsewhere? If so, the story is not only missing out on the better half of its possibilities, it also risks betraying readers' trust. If they picked up the book because the premise sounded cool-only to discover the premise was never suitably developed-they're likely to be disappointed. What Happens When You Choose the Wrong Premise? Your story's premise is its central idea. This is the concept that created the unique situation upon which your conflict is founded. Consider the following: [list] [*]A genius child is tricked into massacring an alien army, thinking he's playing only a game. (Ender's Game) [/list] [img]http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/Asa-Butterfield-Ender-Wiggin-Enders-Game-Orson-Scott-Card.jpg [list] [*]A naval officer and a surgeon-cum-spy pursue friendship and adventure during the Napoleonic wars. (Master and Commander) [/list] [img]http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/10/the-three-must-have-story-elements-action-humor-and-relationships.jpg [list] [*]Two teenage cancer patients fall in love and seek the meaning of life by pursuing their favorite author. (The Fault in Our Stars) [/list] [img]http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Fault-in-our-Stars.jpg For the sake of example, let's say we just read a book with the following premise: [list] [*]An outcast girl in post-apocalyptic Siberia discovers local wolves manifesting strange abilities-sometimes grotesque, sometimes miraculous. [/list] Now, I just made that up off the top of my head, but I actually think it sounds pretty cool. If I read the blurb on Amazon, I'd take a second look. But if in reading that book, I discovered the mysterious mutant wolves only made random appearances throughout the plot and didn't actuallyÂ matter to the outcome of the climax, I'd be pretty disappointed. The problem might not be that the book is a bad read. The problem is that the author chose the wrong premise. Best case scenarioÂ is that the â€śaccidentalâ€ť premise that surfaced in the main conflict isn't a bad read in its own right even though it has a scattered focus since it started out trying to be something it's not. Worst case scenario is that the â€śaccidentalâ€ť premise is watered-down and boring because it took so much attention away from what could have and should have been the best part of the book. Not exactly what you're hoping for in your story? Me neither. How to Identify Your Story's Premise-theÂ Right One Ask yourself the following two questions to make sure your story has a cohesive premise-and that it's theÂ right premise. 1. What Idea Inspired This Story? Usually, although certainly not always, the idea that first sparked your imagination's curiosity is going to beÂ your primary premise. For example, all my stories have started with the same simple concepts that carried them through to completion: [list] [*]A disgraced knight falls in love with a fellow captive during the Third Crusade. (Behold the Dawn) [*]A man learns he has the ability to cross into a parallel fantasy world known to most people only through dreams. (Dreamlander) [*]A woman who lives in the sky falls onto a barnstorming pilot's biplane. (Storming) [*]A poor boy in Georgian England is endowed with superpowers. (Wayfarer) [/list] [img]http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/KM-Weiland-Novels-Behold-the-Dawn-Dreamlander-Storming.jpg Consider your own first spark of inspiration. Is that original idea still present in your existing story? Is it stillÂ prominent in your story? Is it stillÂ powering your story? If so, cool beans. If not, you might want to considerÂ what is the controlling idea. 2. What Idea Is Powering the Conflict? Doesn't matter what cool idea you initially came up with. Your story'sÂ true premise will always be at the heart of the main conflict-the plot. What does your character want? What's getting in his way? How is he overcoming the conflict to eventually reach his story goal? What's at stake if he does or doesn't reach it? Usually, you won't be able to sum up these ideas in the same words as you would your initial idea (above), but even if they're not exactly the same, the one mustÂ grow out of the other. To return to our original example of the outcast girl and the mutant wolves, if her main conflict ended up being about learning how to be a nun in a convent, with only a few glimpses of the wolves out her window, then the original premise and the actual plot do not align-and the story doesn't work. What's powering your main conflict? Is it your original premise idea? If so, cool beans! If not, how has your story evolved away from the original idea? Can you reincorporate it into the main conflict? Or do you need to scrap the original premise altogether so you can strengthen the emergent one? A solid narrative begins and ends with a cohesive focus on your story's premise. To find that focus, you first have to learn how to identify your story's premise. Use these two questions to refine your understanding of your story and come up with a high-concept premise that wows readers all the way through to the end. Wordplayers, tell me your opinion! How did you figure out how to identify your story's premise? What is it? Tell me in the comments! The post How to Identify Your Story's Premiseâ€“and Its Most Important Part appeared first on Helping Writers Become Authors.
<p><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/2016/11/04/simple-natural-fall-decor-with-candles/simple-natural-fall-decor-with-candles-2/"><img class="alignright wp-image-20231" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Simple-Natural-Fall-Decor-with-Candles.jpg" alt="Simple Natural Fall Decor with Candles" width="267" height="400" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Simple-Natural-Fall-Decor-with-Candles.jpg 735w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Simple-Natural-Fall-Decor-with-Candles-100x150.jpg 100w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Simple-Natural-Fall-Decor-with-Candles-200x300.jpg 200w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Simple-Natural-Fall-Decor-with-Candles-347x520.jpg 347w" sizes="(max-width: 267px) 100vw, 267px" /></a>When the cool weather of fall rolled around I got the itch to decorate for fall like so many women out there. Unlike the masses though I am minimalist and very much inspired by nature. I don't crazy with decor and I actually prefer that most decor around my home be items IÂ can useÂ year round if I want to. So for the most part I want simple, timeless, decor that I can then tie into a few small seasonal items that rotate throughout the year. This is why I love to use candles for decor and ambiance because they are simple, lovely, enjoyable (especially scented ones), and I can put them away if the scent or appearance screams 'Fall' or 'Christmas'.</p><br /> <p>The scent is just another reason to love candles. A beautiful fall wreath is lovely to look at but does it make you have all the warm, cozy feelings that a pumpkin spice candle does? Does a pretty snow globe make you want to curl up by a roaring fire or are those feelings more likely to be induced by a lovely smelling candle of pine or balsam fir? Smell can deeply affect moods and bring back warm memories of seasonal fun and festivity. I absolutely adore candles for this reason and always have.</p><br /> <p>I recently added some candles from the <a href="http://www.chesapeakebaycandle.com/heritage-collection/?utm_source=blg&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=ssblgs25hc" rel="nofollow">Chesapeake Bay Heritage collection</a> to my own home for fall/winter. I love their classic look and wood lids. They go perfect with theme of my decor which is less traditional fall and more â€śfall in wine countryâ€ť. The previous homeowner had a definite Tuscan theme going on and traditional fall colors kind of clash so I concentrate on purples, browns, greens, and cream colors.</p><br /> <p>We will end up renovating the home completely and go with something more modern but while we get to know the home and we save for the changes we eventually want to make, I am rather content with the Tuscan feel and colors.Â The dining room, which you can see below, is painted in a dark wine color. The fall candles and purple and brown acorns our buffet cabinet give me that touch of fall I want and it keeps with the wine country feel.</p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/?attachment_id=20204"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-20204" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-3.jpg" alt="fall-candle-decor-3" width="522" height="349" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-3.jpg 1936w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-3-150x100.jpg 150w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-3-300x201.jpg 300w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-3-768x514.jpg 768w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-3-520x348.jpg 520w" sizes="(max-width: 522px) 100vw, 522px" /></a></p><br /> <p style="text-align: left;">Of course, as I mentioned previously it is all about the scent right? Well, the scents are amazing. They transport you immediately to that fall state of mind. <a href="http://www.chesapeakebaycandle.com/large-jar-candle-pumkin-latte/?utm_source=blg&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=ssblgs25hc" rel="nofollow">Pumpkin Latte</a>, <a href="http://www.chesapeakebaycandle.com/vanilla-biscotti-small-jar-candle/?utm_source=blg&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=ssblgs25hc" rel="nofollow">Vanilla Biscotti</a>, and <a href="http://www.chesapeakebaycandle.com/firewood-fig-small-jar-candle/?utm_source=blg&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=ssblgs25hc" rel="nofollow">Firewood Fig</a>. Yum!</p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/?attachment_id=20206"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-20206" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-4.jpg" alt="fall-candle-decor-4" width="522" height="349" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-4.jpg 1936w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-4-150x100.jpg 150w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-4-300x201.jpg 300w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-4-768x514.jpg 768w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor-4-520x348.jpg 520w" sizes="(max-width: 522px) 100vw, 522px" /></a></p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/?attachment_id=20208"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-20208" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor6.jpg" alt="fall-candle-decor6" width="522" height="349" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor6.jpg 1936w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor6-150x100.jpg 150w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor6-300x201.jpg 300w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor6-768x514.jpg 768w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor6-520x348.jpg 520w" sizes="(max-width: 522px) 100vw, 522px" /></a></p><br /> <p style="text-align: left;">In addition to burning these candles in the dining room during our family meals I also like to bring them in the kitchen. The kitchen is the literal and figurative heart of our home so the smell disperses throughout the home and makes it smell cozy, warm, and amazing. And as you can see the Tuscan theme evolves from wine country in the dining room to Italian cafe in the kitchen. I am not generally a wallpaper person but this cafe border has grown on me.</p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/?attachment_id=20210"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-20210" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/candle-decor.jpg" alt="candle-decor" width="522" height="349" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/candle-decor.jpg 1936w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/candle-decor-150x100.jpg 150w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/candle-decor-300x201.jpg 300w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/candle-decor-768x514.jpg 768w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/candle-decor-520x348.jpg 520w" sizes="(max-width: 522px) 100vw, 522px" /></a></p><br /> <p style="text-align: left;">For scents that are more winter and a little less fall, we enjoy Balsam Fir, Snow by the Shore (Cedarwood and Lemon), and Cinnamon Spice. Since they are sitting on the buffet they are easy to grab and light for the evening meal. Eating together is mandatory in this house and anything we can do to add those comfy, cozy, special touches is a plus with me. Dinner is when we celebrate good company.</p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/?attachment_id=20207"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-20207" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor5.jpg" alt="fall-candle-decor5" width="522" height="349" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor5.jpg 1936w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor5-150x100.jpg 150w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor5-300x201.jpg 300w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor5-768x514.jpg 768w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor5-520x348.jpg 520w" sizes="(max-width: 522px) 100vw, 522px" /></a></p><br /> <p style="text-align: left;">The small glass vase where I house the extra acorns or all of them when not in use is elevated by the temporary addition of a <a href="http://www.chesapeakebaycandle.com/heritage-collection/?utm_source=blg&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=ssblgs25hc">Chesapeake Bay</a> candle I think.</p><br /> <p style="text-align: left;">Do you decorate with seasonal candles?</p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/?attachment_id=20209"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-20209" style="border: 2px solid #808000;" src="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor7.jpg" alt="fall-candle-decor7" width="522" height="349" srcset="http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor7.jpg 1936w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor7-150x100.jpg 150w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor7-300x201.jpg 300w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor7-768x514.jpg 768w, http://naturemoms.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/fall-candle-decor7-520x348.jpg 520w" sizes="(max-width: 522px) 100vw, 522px" /></a></p><br /> <p style="text-align: center;">This post was written in partnership with Chesapeake Bay Candles. All words and opinions are mine.</p><br /> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://naturemoms.com/blog/2016/11/04/simple-natural-fall-decor-with-candles/">Simple Natural Fall Decor with Candles</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://naturemoms.com/blog">Nature Moms Blog</a>.</p>