L.W. Flouisa's picture
L.W. Flouisa from Tennessee is reading More Murakami December 1, 2014 - 7:47am

This is something I've been thinking about it for a while, as I transition less into the science fiction and fantasy realm, and more into writing "beach reads".

How much authorial descretion is advised, particularly when writing historical fiction. I suppose it could depend on if your writing young adult or adult. But like while my work tends to run quite dark, for whatever reason I've never put a thief (or even a murderer) in the pillory. 'Oh I'll guillotine the murderer, yet my stopping point has always been the pillory for petty theivery.

I know literary tends to approach more sensitive topics, and one classic actually comes to mind specifically: that one by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Of course in old literary fiction, there wasn't a distinction between young adult novels, and adult fiction novels either. So I've always kept that in mind. Which makes me wonder, if that particular novel would be YA today?

All this to say, I didn't go there in my last Nano. I've cut some heads off, lots of them. But I just didn't bother putting in a pillory. Pillories for theives feels like shooting fish in a barrel to me. Overkill by the ton load.

This is honestly, why I haven't done anything but poetry for a long time. I'm not really sure how to rationalize the use of the pillory in a context post late 19th century.

I had to tip toe a bit around the topic, as I just had a dream about a JRPG that oepns with half the cast being locked in the pillory. (Yes I'm a classic JRPG gamer.)

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading Wanderers by Chuck Wendig December 4, 2014 - 12:41am

I'm not 100% sure I understand the issue. Are you saying that you feel some stories call for the pillory but you avoid it because you find it distasteful? If you're writing in a time period where this was accepted, then you don't have to rationalize it in a contemporary context - and you don't have to agree with how things were done to represent them in your fiction (I mean, I personally don't agree with murder but I've written about plenty of murderers).

As for The Scarlet Letter being YA... that's a totally different topic but the simple answer is no.

L.W. Flouisa's picture
L.W. Flouisa from Tennessee is reading More Murakami December 4, 2014 - 11:00am

Exactly what I needed to know!:D I kind of figured, that was the main thing holding me back. Right, like I can have the pillory and not agree with it. I'm currently trying to research the early 19th to early 20th centuries.

Thanks! That helps a bunch.:D

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading Wanderers by Chuck Wendig December 4, 2014 - 4:23pm

Obviously you don't want to throw stuff in gratituously but people will kyiv or if you avoid something that "should" be there.

L.W. Flouisa's picture
L.W. Flouisa from Tennessee is reading More Murakami December 5, 2014 - 11:44am

I ended up just going with whatever my worry was for Bailee And The Ruins Watch. In the context of middle grade fantasy adventure stories, it's more old fashioned discipline in general. I find myself having to make my parents and aunts less evil stepmother like on revision.

But it's finished, at 1,300 words. I'm happy with it for now.

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading Wanderers by Chuck Wendig December 5, 2014 - 12:50pm

I'm impressed that you responded to that because I wrote it and I can't figure out what I was trying to say before autocorrect butchered it.

L.W. Flouisa's picture
L.W. Flouisa from Tennessee is reading More Murakami December 5, 2014 - 12:56pm

I'm one of those that tries to infer when possible.

I'm finding translating from Eastern Horror to like Western Portal Fantasy .... super super tricky.

I hope that makes sense, I speak in the language of Mud sometimes.