Tag Archives: right wing extremists

Mix and Match

Before you ask, no, I’m not done with my summary yet. I have been working on it, honest! I’m up to over 3,400 words as I write this, but I hit a snag. It’s not a problem with the story so much as that I had a new idea that has got me thinking about a different, and hopefully better, way to bring some conflict into this tale. And that brings me to the topic for today.

A good trick for many authors is to mix and match things that may, at first glance, not seem to fit together. My idea does this.

My NaNoWriMo story this year is about civil war, as the ramifications of the Republican political platform have been weighing heavily on my mind lately. The backwards thinking of the right-wing extremists that have taken control of the GOP have convinced me that this election is the most important vote of my life. And I couldn’t help but to (literally) demonize the crazies by including a supernatural influence in my story. I also thought that this would be a good way to rewrite the first NaNoWriMo book and include the Valkyries I have been writing about since then.

So since I have tossed all these ideas into the melting pot, you can guess that the resulting plot summary is all over the map. As I was working on it tonight I think that I may have come up with a way to bring all this stuff together into a single, cohesive whole. Either that or I have lost it completely and my story will end up even more of a mess than before.

Before I explain my idea, I need to tell you a little bit about myself. First, I am half Norwegian (on my mother’s side). That heritage is why I chose to write about Valkyries in the first place. I had a basic knowledge of the Norse mythology, and over the last couple of years I have amassed a small collection of books that have helped me expand that understanding into something that I can use in my books.

Second, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. That’s right, the Mormons. The same church that Mitt Romney says he belongs to, although I don’t think that he is living any of the principles that the church believes in. But I won’t go into that now. If you watched the debates over the last few weeks you should know by now that he is not now, and probably never will be ready to be a good President. And if you disagree with me then you obviously haven’t been paying attention and I probably wouldn’t be able to convince you otherwise, so we’ll leave it at that.

So taking those two things into account, while I have a great respect for my Norwegian heritage, my faith in the LDS church is also very important to me. My first NaNoWriMo effort included some heavy references to my church, and I do want to include that in this book as well. But that brings me to a problem, as well as a possible solution.

The problem is that if the Valkyries and the related mythology are such a big part of this book, how does my main character resolve the conflict between his introduction to the supernatural world and his faith in the Christian God? (No matter what you may have heard, the LDS faith worships the same God as the Catholics, Lutherans, Episcopalians, Methodists, Baptists, etc., etc., etc. We just don’t think they are doing it right.)

My solution was that the Christian God is superior to the Norse gods. If you read the Norse mythologies, deities such as Odin, Thor, Loki, and the others are all represented more as super-powered humans than actual gods. As a matter of fact, I think that there are some experts on this mythology that think that the Norse pantheon is actually a tale of a group of actual people that has been exaggerated way out of proportion over the course of history. They think that these adventurers simply had a really good bard to tell their stories, making them into the stuff of legends.

What this means for my hero is that he can keep his faith while fighting side by side with Thor. He can take comfort in the prospect of going to heaven while he is battling the demons of Loki’s army.

Working with one of the Einherjar (the warriors of Valhalla) may be a little harder to explain, but I’ll figure that out when I get to it.

So here is where we come to the idea that could bring this all together. As I was thinking about the Norse mythology, I started thinking about Ragnarök. The Norse Armageddon was something that I had thought about including before, but now I think that their version of the end of the world could be the one thing that pulls this all together.

I think I can plan the book so that my hero is thrown into one scenario after another from the prophecy of Ragnarök. The parts would have to be changed in order to more include more demons than giants, but I think that this could help to focus the plot into a recognizable pattern. Not too recognizable, as I want it to be a surprise when I pull out the reveal that this s all a lead-up to Armageddon, but I think it could definitely work.

So that’s where I’m going to have to focus my efforts. I’m going to try to finish the summary with that end goal in mind, and then when I break it up into a usable outline I can interweave the Ragnarök theme into it as appropriate.

Please let me know what you think of this plan. Is this a workable idea, or am I way off base? Any input would be appreciated.

I’ll check in again on Sunday. See you then!


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Filed under About Me, NaNoWriMo, Politics, The Writing Experience

Filling in Some Holes

Things are still moving, although they are still mostly in my head. This week I have been considering the problem of the holes in my story idea. This is a common problem, so don’t be discouraged if it happens to you. If you’ve got a few minutes, I’ll tell you some more.

My idea is that the country has gone to hell, literally. The nefarious forces behind the recent Republican atrocities were actually demons. The politicians had made pacts with the darkness to get elected, and the weak-minded citizens allowed them to do it. Now the country is nothing like the powerful nation of freedom that it used to be, and things are heating up toward a new civil war.

The gaping hole that I found in this idea is that I need to figure out just how far things have progressed, and why nothing was done about the problem before. I live in Madison, Wisconsin, and if you have been paying attention to the news, when the villainous Scott Walker was elected and started his term of office by breaking the state laws and ignoring the Constitution the people of Wisconsin got mad. We didn’t just stand for it. Instead, we marched, we protested, we sang, we shouted, we made our voices heard. Unfortunately, the dark forces (and money) behind Walker managed to buy their way through the recall campaign, so we are stuck with two more years of this crook.

On the national stage, we are dealing with the same kinds of issues. There have been massive public outcries about the disastrous policies put forward by the Republican right-wing extremists. So if there is already that much noise about the terrorist acts of these politicians, how can I think that my fellow countrymen would stand for this kind of thing in the first place?

It’s a dilemma, and one that is vital for me to figure out before I start writing. I have to know how we got there before I can tell my story about how we are going to get out of it.

Magic is going to be a big part of this story, so that may be the simplest answer. After all, they are demons. Maybe they simply cast a spell on the voting machines to get their way. I may be able to work with that.

That’s all the time I have for this post. Look for me again on Sunday. See you then!

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Filed under NaNoWriMo, Politics, The Writing Experience