Fiction Has No Room for Comfort?

I think that every novel I have ever read has given me a feeling of tension. Every chapter, at least in most cases, has had some kind of conflict. I simply cannot recall a relaxing book.

In a comfortable, relaxing book, nothing really happens. In the genres I read, there’s always a sense of danger, tension, or friction. Failure is catastrophic. Death is a great possibility. I wouldn’t say there’s always conflict, though.

The beginning of a book will occasionally start out happily, but conflict comes very soon. Lord of the Rings and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe are a couple examples. But usually, books start in the middle of conflict.

The ending is usually the only place in a novel that is calm and relaxing. The danger has passed and the conflict resolved. I find that’s usually true, unless it’s part of a series or trilogy.

What do you think of this? Is conflict always necessary? Have you ever read a novel that’s mostly free of conflict? Looking forward to your comments.

One-Sentence Summaries – Part One

Sometimes a single sentence can sell a book. It’s also called a hook. That’s what you want to do, you want to attract potential readers with this sentence. This post has a good summary of how to write a one-sentence summary.

Looking at what it says, you should have a character, conflict, what’s at stake, action, and if necessary, the setting. So, I thought I’d give this a try with various upcoming books I have planned.

Ariadne: Origins Book 1

This is going to be my debut novel. It takes place several years after the colonisation of Ariadne. It’s called Origins because the two books will show how important features of Ariadne develop or are discovered.

  • Character: A young woman with unusual powers
  • Conflict: A hostile takeover
  • What’s at stake: Survival of the colony
  • Action: Lead a resistance
  • Setting: Ariadne (though this may not be necessary to mention by name, so I may call it a distant colony world)

On a distant world, a young woman with unusual powers must lead a resistance against a hostile force threatening the survival of the colony.

Ariadne: Origins Book 2

This is the second book in the Origins duology.

  • Character: A team of investigators
  • Conflict: A former team member who defected wants to control an alien biological weapon
  • What’s at stake: The lives of the colony
  • Action: Discover the secret of the alien presence
  • Settings: Ariadne (or a distant colony world)

A team of investigators must discover the secret of an alien presence to prevent a defector from destroying everything with an alien biological weapon.

Honestly, I don’t like this one as much. I need to figure out a way to make it sound better.

Untitled Solar System Exploration Science Fiction Series

This series is a collection of shorter books that I have in mind that mostly features only one character and a handful of minor characters who don’t appear much at all. It’s a solitary exploration.

  • Character: A terminally ill man
  • Conflict: An internal struggle with mortality
  • What’s at stake: A dying wish to see the Solar System
  • Action: Test a new spacecraft and space suit.
  • Setting: The Solar System

A terminally ill man battles with his own mortality as he tests a new spacecraft to fulfill his wish to explore the Solar System.

This one seems simpler and I think the story itself is a straightforward tale.

These are the three most immediate books or series I plan on writing. There are others that I have planned for the future, as well. I’ll do another post summarising those.

My question for you is this: Which of these one-sentence summaries catches your eye the most? Are there any that don’t sound very good? Any that sound very good? Let me know in the comments below.

Also, if you want to share your own one-sentence summaries for books you’ve written or plan to write, please include those in your comments.