“Establishing Scene” Medium Rare Dragon Flight – Scene 1 Panel 4 -6
We have just met our heroes Rosa and Princess Unicorn and discovered the world of Medium Rare. Medium Rare’s fantasy world is named “Rara.”
Writing Tip: when trying to come up with authentic-sounding place names, imagine how your characters speak or what would sound “normal” in their culture. The Medium Rare dragons growl a lot in their speech and “Rara” sounds like dragons saying “Earth” while growling!
We learn the purpose of the sharp mechanical claw. It grabs Princess Unicorn!
The second panel is sinister! The claw comes from a swirling storm cloud. Princess Unicorn’s fear is evident. Look closely at the bottom left corner of the panel to see Rosa’s point of view. Even from this side angle, Rosa’s feelings of shock and horror are clear.
It’s a scary time in the story but there’s still the opportunity for comedy. Princess Unicorn shouts, “I’m going to be sick!” The idea is that even in this frightening situation, we keep the story lighthearted by focusing on the feeling of nausea from being swept away as if Princess Unicorn had eaten too many hotdogs and went on a roller-coaster!
Writing Tip: humor is a psychological tool used by human beings to get through hardship. That’s why in war movies or horror movies there’s often humor between characters as they fight for their lives. No matter what hardships you put your characters into, find ways to create humor for your audience.
The final panel of the scene returns to the gravity of the situation. Rosa’s face expresses shock, fear, and anxiety. The text, “He just kidnapped Princess Unicorn!” is only included because it’s necessary to advance the plot. However, the pathos of the scene is conveyed to the reader through Rosa’s expression.
Writing Tip: Show! Don’t tell! The main goal of the final panel is to have the reader feel empathy for Rosa. We focus on Rosa’s face as this is a strong way to create emotion. Although the text serves the purpose of advancing the plot, it is less important than the reader understanding and sharing Rosa’s emotions.
In just six panels and five lines of text, we’ve established Medium Rare’s world called “Rara,” introduced our heroes Rosa and Princess Unicorn, and uncovered an enigma about who or what has just kidnapped the Princess!? In Act 2 – Scene 2 of Hamlet, Shakespeare coins the famous expression when his character Polonius explains, “Brevity is the soul of wit.” Great writing is concise, clear, and states its meaning with as few words as possible. It’s exciting to aim to tell such an epic fantasy story so economically. If William Shakespeare was alive today, would he be a fan of Medium Rare Dragon Flight and follow the ongoing adventure of Rosa, Princess Unicorn, and their friends? I can say unequivocally, YES!!!