Writing Wednesday: Foreshadowing or Aftshadowing?

Stats from last week: Made my three blog posts, and my quota of comments on those of others. Still looking for an appropriate open market for the only two unpublished stories I have (“Schizo the Magnificent” and “Truth in Advertising”.) I still have plenty of time to decide on my June 21st ePub (but I AM running out of things to choose from…

I was better/more consistent at spending time each day on Swordsmaster – five days out of seven IS better than two days, but still not every day. I put in another 2,088 words as I made it 47% through the current revision of Swordsmaster, which has now crossed 93,000 words.


Listening to Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time again was at first a way to help me maintain the voice as I continued working on Swordsmaster, but I’m also learning more from it this time around. There were so many plots and sub-plots in this series, and not knowing what was coming the first go round, I’m surprised at how hard he worked at early foreshadowing of what would appear in the later books.

The exercise is sort of like watching The Sixth Sense a second time to see HOW M. Night Shyamalan carried the movie all the way to the final plot twist without giving it away and yet being consistent about the deceased never touching or truly interacting with the living.

There’s more to it than that, of course. I have a lot of respect for the process that Robert Jordan must have gone through thinking out his plot(s) and designing his world. I was surprised to see how many of the hints to things to come there were (that were meaningless to me when I first read, but obvious now that I know THE FUTURE), and to realize how much of the story in (what became a) fourteen book series was planned out in advance. I’m only at the start of the second book, and I’ve already come upon a reference to Tuon, even though she doesn’t appear until book nine. This is just the most recent foreshadowing to strike me, and one that shows just how far ahead the planning went.

And none of it comes across as though it was just thrown in there as an afterthought (the way it felt when we found out that Darth Vader is Luke’s father in The Empire Strikes Back ; Luke was NOT the only one in that theater shouting “NO-O-O-O!”)

I wonder if I can ever be that organized – outlines are a challenge to me – I tend to write by the seat of my pants. But I may be selling myself short; the way that my writing evolves, the more time I spend building a story, the more it expands backwards and forwards – details are added that didn’t occur to me when I first started, and new directions and sub-plots as well. It wouldn’t surprise me to learn that something similar happened in the six years between when Mr. Jordan began writing The Eye of the World and when it was published in 1990.

Stories grow in the telling, and then we add in hints later on as through we’re predicting the future, when we’re really just letting the past know about it. We call it foreshadowing within the story, but in the process, it’s really aftshadowing (at least for me.) Just saying…



There’s still an outstanding coupon for my collection And Yet Still Even More Things I Could Get OUT OF MY MIND (the next ten people to purchase the collection at Smashwords with coupon code LZ78M will receive a 67% discount (so you pay only 99-cents for SIX stories – such a deal!)

Stories include “Close Enough”, The Final Ending”, “The Red Barrens”, “Dempsey’s Debut”, “Look Both Ways”, and “The Wolves Will Come.”

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/587154


DateNightCoverWilliam Mangieri’s writing – including his most recent release “Date Night” – can be found in many places, including, but not limited to:
• Smashwords:  https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/NoTimeToThink
• His Amazon Author page:  http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B008O8CBDY
• Barnes & Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/william-mangieri?store=book&keyword=william+mangieri

• His site on WordPress:  https://williammangieri.wordpress.com
• “William Mangieri’s Writing Page” on Facebook at:  http://www.facebook.com/NoTimeToThink
• His Goodreads author page:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6893616.William_Mangieri
• Or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri

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