Thursday, February 25, 2010
My Novel's Journey: Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator: Format Fun
One fun part of writing a novel is experimenting. In Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator, I've had a lot of fun playing with formats aside from the standard narrative. Today, I'm going to cover the radio show.
Neeta and the Zombie Death Extreme contestants get interviewed on K-RTH, one of Los Angeles' radio stations, and the DJ will become Neeta's love interest for the book. I thought it'd be fun to actually have the show playing rather than always experience it in narrative from Neeta's point of view.
Advantages: Once again, it's shorter, and I don't need to worry about peripheral information like where people are sitting, what the station looks like, etc. Since I'm trying to keep this fast moving and funny, that helps keep my pace.
Disadvantages: Radio is about voices, so I have to make sure my cues for who is talking, when someone is joking vs. being serious, etc. are all done without visual cues, but I don't want to make it sound like a script. Also, radio employs a lot of sound clips--bits of music, taped sound bites, etc. that I need to weave in without confusing the reader.
This is from Brian and Cassie in the morning interviewing Neeta. Brian is more the straight man; Cassie is happy-go-lucky. See if you can tell them apart, and tell who Neeta is as well.
"That's great! We have just a minute before weather and traffic, and we'll get you that website. First, though... I don't want to be a downer, but I've got to ask you. You've had a lousy run of luck lately, Neeta: your mother died, you got sued, now this thing with Jorgenson--"
"--oh, yeah, poor Jorgie! He was such a hottie, too--"
"--so why do you do it? What makes you want to keep fighting zombies day after day."
"... I... Well, someone has to do it. People will die otherwise. Die and come back. I know what I'm doing, and frankly, I'm good at it. I don't think I could live with myself if I didn't do what I could."
"Wow. That's so... wow."
"Yeah. You're amazing, Neeta. I mean that. I'm glad you're out there protecting us.
"We'll be back to talk more with Neeta and her trainees after our K-Earth's own Roger Tellerman gives us the low-down on the low front coming our way. Roger, give us some cool news."