Fantasy Writers Come Together to Discuss Creating a Monster


In this blog post, we discuss how writers can use multiple viewpoints to build complexity in their stories. We ask CS Pacat, author of the Dark Rising series to shed some light on how she does her best work. Her advice is actionable and insightful.


Pictured from left to right: Alex Adsett, CS Pacat, Sarah Street and Vanessa Len.

Ever wondered what goes into the creation of a complex novel series?

We had the privilege of speaking with CS Pacat, author of the Dark Rise series, who shared some insight into the challenges of writing a book with a large cast of characters and multiple viewpoints. We thoroughly enjoyed the 'Creating a Monster' panel run by Queensland-based agent, Alex Adsett. This panel was a part of the Sydney Writer's Festival 2024.

CS Pacat revealed that their current series, 'Dark Rise', presented a significant challenge due to the sheer number of characters involved. Drawing inspiration from literary greats like Tolkien, they emphasized the importance of controlling character arcs and maintaining a clear overarching narrative.

When crafting a story with multiple viewpoints, it's crucial for the author to create windows through which the reader can see the main character arc. Each character brings their own unique perspective to the narrative, and it's through these different windows that the story truly comes to life.

By allowing the reader to experience the story through various viewpoints, the author is able to paint a more nuanced and dynamic picture of the main character's journey. Each window offers a different angle, shedding light on different aspects of the character's arc and allowing for a deeper understanding of their motivations and struggles. Just like looking through different windows in a house, each character's viewpoint adds depth and complexity to the story. It's through these varied perspectives that the reader is able to fully immerse themselves in the narrative, gaining a richer and more multifaceted understanding of the main character's growth and development. So next time you're crafting a story with multiple viewpoints, remember to create those windows that allow the reader to see the main character arc from all angles. It's through these diverse perspectives that your story will truly shine.

To manage the complexity of the story, CS Pacat highlighted the need to start character arcs individually before intertwining them to create a cohesive plot.


The panel participants and Alex.


Pictured from left to right: Novelly students Nancy, Lanny and Neil.

By delving into works like Game of Thrones and studying how other authors handle multiple viewpoints, they were able to navigate the intricacies of storytelling effectively.

For those aspiring writers grappling with similar challenges, CS Pacat's advice serves as a valuable reminder to stay true to the larger arc of the story while carefully managing character development. Ultimately, writing a novel is not just about crafting a tale but also about guiding characters through their journeys of self-discovery and growth.

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