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The Devil is in the Details posted 08 July 2005 in Writing TipsThe Devil is in the Details by Kidruhil Lancer, Auditor

I'm flowing smoothly with my world-creation, but the further I get and the more details I create (especially where the metaphysics are concerned), the more I'm starting to worry about one thing.

How do I explain the complex metaphysics to the reader?

I'd really rather not have to go with the cliche of creating a character who knows nothing of said metaphysics... I'd really like to write a story that doesn't have to hold the readers hand. But then, I run up against the problem of... if I don't use the old method... What method do I use?

So far, my only ideas have been to 1) Put most of the information in the prologue somehow, 2) write some sort of essay on the metaphysics and have that be the forward (an idea I really don't like, although I am good at writing essays)... or 3) just letting the reader fend for themselves and trying to explain as I go along as several other authors have done.

The problem with the third method is that the metaphysics of my world are drastically different from the norm. The only series I've read so far that seems similar is the Roger Zelazny books... ( And he used the cliche method)...

My world (or rather, my universe) is your basic multi-world theory... but with alot more random tiny details than Zelazny put into his books. A different mythology... different rules... There are really only a couple of ways that my idea is similar to his, now that I think of it.. but that's neither here nor there.

Anyway, back to my problem. How do I get the reader to understand what the hell I'm talking about without diverting from the flow of the story with lengthy explainations, and without using the Jordan method?

Any helpful suggestions would be very welcome. If anyone would like more details about my metaphysics, just say the word and I'll throw something up here. I'm still working out the rules and the randoms.

Thanks in advance! view post


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