Thursday, April 30, 2009

Premise vs. Problem

I was looking at future releases and I came across Watch Over Me by Christa Parrish and I thought, that sounds formiliar, but I knew I hadn’t seen it before. So I went back and I found Cry in the Night by Colleen Coble. I have read neither book, but when you read the descriptions you see similarities between both books. The premise is identical. A rescue worker takes in an abandoned baby when the parents can’t be found. It is only upon closer inspection that we find that the problems are different.

What that tells me is that it is the premise that makes a story unique, not the problems the characters face. If we nobodies hope to get any notice, it isn’t going to be through presenting manuscripts with similar premises, but different problems. The development of the premise is the place where we can achieve the greatest gains in developing a good story.