Order Of The Magic Scroll : Forum : Prologue or No Prologue?


Prologue or No Prologue?

14 Years Ago


I'm thinking of putting a prologue into my book for information purposes...but would this take away from the beginning chapter?

[no subject]

14 Years Ago


I think there are two schools of thought on this.  1) Sometimes it's better to let your reader discover your world with the character.  It's best to avoid a Star Wars-style this-is-what-has-gone-on-before prologue.  It's better to 2) describe a trigger incident that has ramifications during the time of your story.  It helps ground your reader without boring them.  Fantasy is all about discovery; don't just tell them what you want them to know and then tell your story.

That's my opinion, anyway.

[no subject]

14 Years Ago


Realm of Shadow has a prologue that is as stated by Anne a trigger event, the last catalyst of a chain of events that cause our heroes to move into action (well they really aren't heroes).  This tells just a hint of history and gives the reader a view of the antagonist early, allowing them a "Small" glimpse of the hardships our "good guys" (well they all ain't really good either) will face.

The tale of Realm of Shadows has been in the works for nearly 20 years, re-write upon re-write, but the Prologue is only less than a year old and was recommended by many on this site.  I find it a useful tool in this case and has enhanced my story all the more.

I find that if it's a bit more of an "actiony" prologue than a "history lesson" you can accomplish more and deliver a better tale to the reader.

[no subject]

14 Years Ago


Originally posted by Michael Raymond Robinson

Realm of Shadow has a prologue that is as stated by Anne a trigger event, the last catalyst of a chain of events that cause our heroes to move into action (well they really aren't heroes).  This tells just a hint of history and gives the reader a view of the antagonist early, allowing them a "Small" glimpse of the hardships our "good guys" (well they all ain't really good either) will face.

The tale of Realm of Shadows has been in the works for nearly 20 years, re-write upon re-write, but the Prologue is only less than a year old and was recommended by many on this site.  I find it a useful tool in this case and has enhanced my story all the more.

I find that if it's a bit more of an "actiony" prologue than a "history lesson" you can accomplish more and deliver a better tale to the reader.



Michael makes a very valid point.  A prologue can enhance your story greatly if it is less of a history lesson and instead shows your reader the trigger event that your character is either trying to deal with or change in your story.

I myself am currently working on a prologue for my story, one that I originally wasn't going to include.  However, it was suggested by a fellow writer friend of mine that I should include one after hearing all of the ideas for my story.

Whether or not to include one is ultimately your decision.  If you think a prologue would serve your story well and that it would make your story all the better, then by all means, include one.  If not, then leave it out.

 

[no subject]

14 Years Ago


I think also that Prologues should be short, unless they describe a single incident or pattern of incidents (future or past).  A "future" prologue can help project your narrator as recalling your story from his past.  Then he can be more knowledgeable.

[no subject]

14 Years Ago


I personally feel that a prologue should be included, but kept short. If a reader immerses himself in a prologue that goes on and on, then one doesn't feel like reading the first chapter that's a totally different subject. I speak from personal experience.
I think that prologues should only be included in mystery or fantasy stories, not any real-life accounts.
-Moonlight

[no subject]

13 Years Ago


I'm adding a prologue to my book, Mourntyde.  For me, the prologue states an action that triggers everything in the book, but doesn't tie in directly with the first chapter.  That way, the reader gets vital information without feeling like they're veering away from the chapters.

Prologues shouldn't always be used, though.  If it's pointless to do so, then for heaven's sake, don't add it!