Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Personalize Your Novel: Motifs and Epigraphs


A motif is a symbol or collection of symbols and ideas that are repeated throughout your novel that enhances your theme and conjure up your book(s) to readers long after the last page is read. In the BryonySeries, these include:

* mist

* The song, Bryony

* the music box that plays, Bryony

* purple roses

* a flock of crows (otherwise called "a murder")

* the exchange of blood in many forms AND

* the emphasis on food and eating (think about that)

* the mention of fairies and fairy tales

* limericks

* bryony (vine and name), vines, and herbs

* Irish soda bread

* vanilla ice cream

* white cats

* leprechauns

* writing, literature, especially Charles Dickens' Tale of Two Cities

* Henry's love of quotes

* predators of varying kinds

Even my repeated dedication: This book is lovingly dedicated to the reader, whoever you might be

An epigraph is a quote used at the beginning of your book or preceding each of your chapters that ties into its theme. Examples from my books include:

Bryony: Bryony is a rapidly growing invasive perennial vine, with dark green, palmate leaves and a thick, extensive rooting system. Its round berries are poisonous to humans and animals. (epigraphish)

Visage: There are a sort of men whose visages do cream and mantle like a standing pond, and do a willful stillness entertain, with purpose to be dress'd in opinion of wisdom, gravity, profound conceit, as who should say, "I am Sir Oracle, and when I open up my lips no dog bark!" William Shakespeare, Merchant of Venice

Staked!: Think now and then that there is a man who would give his life, to keep a life you love beside you!" Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities

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