About The Far Wild
An expedition gone awry. Suni Koudounas is enamoured with the wonders — and dangers — of the Far Wild. As a naturalist’s apprentice, she’s studied every book and expedition report about the miraculous wilderness. But when her mentor goes missing on expedition, Suni sets aside the Far Wild of ink and paper to venture after him into the primordial jungle.
A missing skyship. As the empire’s most beloved adventurer — or most successful raconteur — Senesio Suleiman Nicolaou doesn’t want much. Wealth beyond measure, fame beyond reason, and a small kingdom somewhere warm should be about enough. When news of the rescue mission reaches him, Senesio knows there’s no better opportunity to add to his living legend.
The most dangerous wilderness known to man. With unexpected enemies above and monstrous predators in the jungles below, it’s up to Suni, Senesio, and their companions to uncover the truth of what’s happening in the Far Wild. It’s a revelation that will shake the empire to its core and reshape the lives of all involved — assuming, of course, they don’t all get eaten first.
Storytelling Thrives at the Intersection of Preparation and Imagination
Howdy, everyone. I’m Alex Knight — author of the recently released fantasy thriller, The Far Wild — and it’s a pleasure to be here today to talk about the writing. Or, more specifically, storytelling.
The debate on how best to write a story is endless, with numerous different camps all preaching different methods. And because writing is such an individual process, I think this is a situation where we can say everyone is right.
Whatever works for you is the best strategy to use.
That being said, I think I have an idea of something we can all use more.
I’m no household name, but I do have six books under my belt now — and a background as a ghostwriter with many more finished works. If I’ve learned one universal truth in my time writing fiction, it’s this:
Storytelling thrives at the intersection of preparation and imagination.
Pantsers like to figure everything out as they go. Plotters like it all planned and prepared.
I think it’s best to write a story by going right down the middle.
The times I see my readers most excited are the times when they’re thinking about a plot event, or world detail, or hinted-at character backstory, and letting their minds run wild. But how do we get their minds to do this?
We create the opportunity for it. And how do we do that? We write right up to the intersection of preparation and imagination.
Plan your plot, create your character backstories, fill your fantasy world with history and living cultures. Then tell the readers just the beginnings of it all.
Obviously, for plot-necessary events, you’ll need to explain as fully as required, but for the rest, I think a less detailed touch is called for.
Lead the readers down the beginning of a rabbit hole.
“Why does X culture do Y?”
“Well, because of The Event.”
“What’s ‘The Event?’”
Don’t explain. Just give it an intriguing name, a few small details, and set it free in the story. It’ll soon run wild in the readers’ imaginations, too. But even more than that, it’ll run wild in yours.
I like to plan my stories pretty thoroughly. But I’ve learned to leave just enough unplanned that my imagination can surprise me.
This is where the magic of writing comes into play.
Create a world, then let it grow naturally in your mind. It’ll soon surprise you and leave you wondering at all the intricacies and mysteries of it. And if it does that for you, it’ll do it for the readers, too.
These sort of jumping off points keep wonder alive in fantasy worlds, and keep us thinking about them long after the book or series is finished.
We write to tell stories, but when we leave room for imagination, we do more than tell stories, we create living, shared worlds. For ourselves, and for our readers, to enjoy for years to come.
Alex Knight is filling good books with bad jokes one sentence at a time. As an author, his work includes the fantasy thriller, The Far Wild, and the LitRPG trilogy, Nova Online. As an aspiring twin he’s not making much progress, but remains determined.
You can learn more at AuthorAlexKnight.com.