Left Behind Fridays Writing Seminar: You Need To Think Through At Least Some Of The Implications Of Your Plot

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It can be hard to think through all of the implications when you’re writing a story.  You have a grand vision, and as you work toward it, it’s easy to include some detail that, upon more detailed examination and extrapolation (almost always by some outside party), inadvertently gives the villain victory, or ruins the hero’s life, or dooms some innocent secondary character, or otherwise creates some terrible aftermath that’s not really compatible with a happy ending.

Still, even if it is understandable, you should really try.  If nothing else, this is why the words “Hey, do you mind looking at this for me?” exist.  Let indulgent friends be the “outside party” that discovers the problem.

The goal is to avoid a situation like the one that arises in the passage reviewed in the Left Behind Fridays post called NRA: Catering The Apocalypse.

What’s happening here is that Nicolae Carpathia, the Antichrist, after two-and-a-half books without much on his villain resume beyond simply being the Antichrist, has unleashed nuclear war upon a world that he already rules, simply because it’s on his Apocalypse Day Planner.

(Actually, he has nuked each city’s airport, oddly enough.  More oddly still, despite each airport being hit with multiple 100-megaton bombs, they look more like LA after a nasty earthquake than a green-glowing glass crater.  Understand: the largest nuke ever tested was 50 megatons, and no one ever tested another because it scared a height-of-the-Cold-War USSR so badly.  A single 100-megaton bomb hitting LaGuardia would shatter windows in Albany and create a new, much larger New York Harbor.  But that’s a rant for another day.)

Rayford Steele, personal pilot to Carpathia, author insert and nominal hero, has chosen not to do what almost any human being in his situation would do (which is to fly his plane straight into a mountain), and has delivered Carpathia safely to Dallas.  As they approach, Rayford radios ahead and asks that food be provided.  It is.  Go and read Fred’s post so he can explain why that’s stupid.

(I’ll add another reason: much is made into the story about the former president of the United States surrendering Air Force One to Carpathia – which really seems like a minor thing when you consider that there’s no more Air Force, and indeed, no more United States, but everyone has their hangups.  Now, when the United States still existed, only Air Force pilots flew Air Force One – thus the name.  Of course, there’s no reason that the Antichrist has to follow that tradition, and if he did, then our author-insert-nominal-hero wouldn’t be in a convenient place to overhear the plot as it goes on around him.  Oh noes!  But there’s one thing that probably hasn’t changed: if Nicolae Carpathia is flying on either of the planes currently used as Air Force One, then it has a cafeteria.  Two of ’em.  For this very reason.

I don’t know if that counts as an “implication”, or just another instance of Lahaye & Jenkins’s hostility to research causing the story, and the readers’ brains, harm.  Either way, a reader could have helped.)

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1 Comment

Filed under Inspirations, Links, Writing Theory

One response to “Left Behind Fridays Writing Seminar: You Need To Think Through At Least Some Of The Implications Of Your Plot

  1. Pingback: Left Behind Fridays Writing Seminar: Unsympathetic Protagonists Are Fine – As Long As You Realize That’s What You’re Writing | Dreams of the Shining Horizon

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