When you get to the end of book 2.5, Interlude: Homecoming, Some of you might be asking: Hey, this picked up right where book two, Exiles from the Sacred Land left off. Why couldn’t you just make this novelette the final chapters of book two? Well, someday I might, or I may tack this novelette onto the back of Exiles like I did the short story “Dragon Knight.” Right now, I like that it is a separate entity. EXPLAIN YOURSELF AUTHOR! Okay I will: I have two reasons for writing this novelette and publishing it this way . First, a lot of what you will read in the novelette I intended to work into Exiles throughout the book. It was even planned that way in the original outline. However, every time I tried to interject something it just seemed really out of place in the story, or it seemed like it followed this crappy formula: This happens, this happens, this shocking thing happens, oh, by the way, did you know this? With the latter being the information I was trying to fit in. There are new revelations in the lives of Rennon, Dorenn, Vesperin, and Trendan in Exiles that are taking their characters to a deeper level and I didn’t want to cheapen that in any way. What it did do (unintentionally) was leave the reader a little unsatisfied because the nature of the plot in Exiles just piled on more conflict, which brings me to point two.
Second reason: It’s time for a break! From the moment of the first Dramyd attack until Dorenn finds the Tome of Enlightenment, he and his friends have been away from home with one issue after another. The only way they know that their home is okay is from Sanmir (and a few others) and he hasn’t been able to slow down long enough to tell them anything by the end of Exiles. The plot of Exiles is a “rising action” story. It is go, go, go; run, run, run etc. So, I thought it would be nice to tell the story in Interlude in a time of rest. Protectors of the Sacred Land will obviously be about... Well… without giving spoilers and only playing off information you have already read, Naneden has got to be ousted from Lux Enor somehow. With the army lost and pretty much dissolved in chaos, a new force must be enlisted to take care of that. It will not be easy! So, if Defenders of the Sacred land is an exposition story and Exiles from the Sacred Land is a rising action story, then Protectors of the Sacred Land will be a climatic story. A five act Shakespearean play is Act 1 Exposition, Act II Rising action, Act III Climax, Act IV falling action, and Act V resolution. A fundamental short story and novel plot is diagrammed as:
Exposition (Introduction of characters, beginning of plot, setting)
Rising Action (Conflicts, turning points, character development, complications)
Climax (Outcome, conflicts all come to a breaking point, excitement!)
Falling Action (Events that happen after the Climax, battle aftermath, marriages, funerals etc.)
Resolution (final outcome, completion and resolution of the primary conflict or main complication) Called a Denouement if the ending is happy and a catastrophe if the final outcome is bad.
Since the story of the Sacred Land Saga is ONE epic story over five books each book should fall on this plot chart so that if you combined all five books into one novel, all of the elements would be included. The novelette also has a place on the chart.
So, now that the English teacher in me has come out here and taught you basic plot (sorry about that) here is the Sacred land Saga plot:
Defenders of the Sacred Land (Exposition)
Exiles from the Sacred Land (Rising Action)
Interlude: Homecoming (Rising Action, sub-climax)
Protectors of the Sacred Land (Climax)
Redemption of the Sacred Land (Falling Action)
Legacy of the Sacred Land (Resolution)
As you can see, Interlude: Homecoming is not really part of the conflicts of Exiles, nor is it climatic like Protectors. It is a bit of rising action and part of the complications, and it is a turning point, which is what rising action is so it does belong between Exiles and Protectors.
By following this plot sequence like this, I hope to tell an engaging story that will take you on one hell of a ride, smack you around a little, make you happy, mad, glad and sad, kick you in the seat of your pants and then sit you down gently in your arm chair with fond memories. I think by the time you read Legacy you will really see the fruits of my effort and be happy I planned it out so well.
Wow, you didn't know I had it planned out so precisely did you?