break the 4th wall?

Cryios099

Member
In my novel there is a fight scene coming up i'm not sure if I should break the wall or not. Do you creative people like those or do they take feel like they have taken out of the story?

"Virgil and the litch looked at each other for a while. They circled just like in an old fashioned Mexican standoff this was in motion like you have seen in plenty of western movies."
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
In my novel there is a fight scene coming up i'm not sure if I should break the wall or not. Do you creative people like those or do they take feel like they have taken out of the story?

"Virgil and the litch looked at each other for a while. They circled just like in an old fashioned Mexican standoff this was in motion like you have seen in plenty of western movies."
It's definitely a style choice. And it works just fine if that's the voice you want to have. The story becomes one that you are telling us rather than one we are witnessing. There's nothing wrong with that, but you should be conscious of what happens and own it moving forward.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
Oh, also-also... Keep in mind that you are placing the telling of the story in the modern era (which, it might be, I don't know).

It creates a distance from the story (in the way that Tolkien does when he talks about locomotives and how trolls really do talk). You are acting as a modern barrier between the story and the reader. Again, it's a style choice. It all depends on how immediate you want the story to be.
 

MithLuin

Well-Known Member
Typically, breaking the fourth wall is an opportunity for humor (a la Deadpool), or a way to work a short-hand into the descriptions. You're looking at your audience directly over the heads of your characters.

So, if the scene isn't humorous, and you don't want to create that 'remote' feeling of the story being one you are telling to the audience from a removed distance, then you will want to find another way to convey the same idea. Perhaps think about how you envision the scene playing out, and describe it in more detail without the allusion to movies.

Deciding to describe it yourself (sans allusion) allows you to bring your own unique viewpoint to it. And if the reader 'recognizes' this scene from movies, that's not necessarily a negative, either. Consider putting yourself in the characters' shoes - what do they think or feel as this scene plays out? That may be more interesting to consider anyway.
 
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