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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

What do Lions and Writing a Novel have in Common? by DiAnn Mills

What do Lions and Writing a Novel have in Common?

By DiAnn Mills

Lions fascinate me. They represent nobility and respect, much like I hope my stories resonate to the reader. Their muscular bodies are to be feared and admired. Hmm, sounds like a novel.

If you think your story lacks zeal, here are ten ways a novel is much like a lion.

1. If you find yourself in the presence of a lion, do not run. The animal will chase you. If a story stalks you because you’re not writing it, the story will chase you. Either one will eat you alive.

You can run, but you can't hide!

2. Lions do their hunting at night. Do your characters wake you in the middle of a deep sleep with their own agenda? “Hey, writer,” the character roars, “I need attention.”

3. A suitable den for a lion is not too large. The animal needs security in a comfortable and small environment. A novel is confined within the pages of a book that tells a story efficiently and creatively. Neither a lion nor a story acts well outside its comfort zone. The result is a misbehaved lion or a book without a solid plot.

4. Lions are not clean animals. Males like to mark their territory, never mind how. Novels have to be clean or the writer is marked as a messy writer who doesn’t pay attention to grammar or detail. Neither are pleasant experiences.

5. Lions communicate through various sounds and physical actions. They like to nuzzle and lick to show affection. They can purr, hiss, or roar. Ah, so does the novel. Writers use sensory perception and body language to express emotion into character, plot, dialogue, setting, and narrative.
Mama, you are my hero.

6. Lions represent bravery, dominance, resilience, authority, wisdom, and strength. A well-written novel embraces the same attributes when a character steps out of his/her comfort zone and accepts a challenge. The character refuses to give up, ushering power into the story line, the kind that changes lives.

7. Lions are basically lazy. They sleep between sixteen to twenty hours per day, mostly during the day. Their activity and hunting begins at dusk. So do many novels. Stories lay hidden beneath the pages until the reader picks up the book, usually at night. The story bolts into action, taking the reader to places never before seen.

8. Lions can be man-eaters. Are novels any different? Stories reach out to readers, seeking to devour their attention.

9. Lions are known to pace. A story that touches the human heart will not leave the reader alone. Its characters continue to walk across our mind and soul. The reader can’t forget and constantly revisits the adventure.

10.Lions are known to be independent within their own pride. A novel stands alone as a witness to the world of a unique contribution to literature.

Are you ready to create a lion-filled novel? I think I hear one roaring . . .


DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She combines unforgettable characters with unpredictable plots to create action-packed, suspense-filled novels. er titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. Library Journal presented her with a Best Books 2014: Genre Fiction award in the Christian Fiction category for Firewall.

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers; the 2015 president of the Romance Writers of America’s Faith, Hope, & Love chapter; a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and International Thriller Writers. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.

DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on any of the social media platforms listed at www.diannmills.com.

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