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However the horror itself needs to be complimented with one of the most important part your gothic novel, this being some form of a supernatural event or otherwise inexplicable event. This could include ghosts or giants walking, or inanimate objects such as a suit of armour or painting as recognised in Castle of Otranto ” it fell crushing his limbs”. In the case of Frankenstein it can be explained but it still a supernatural event. “I had worked hard for nearly two years, for the sole purpose of infusing life into an inanimate body.
“, Shelley not only uses this as a main plot point to drive much of the issuing events, with in this case speaking in a sterile scientific manor, but also to shine light on some of the ethical issues of her time, mainly advancements in science and issues such as bring life back to “inanimate” tissues. It symbolises for her the fact that science could be taken to extremes, and the events after indicate this. These events are often preceded by a vision.
You may want to use this before some form of death. In chapter 5 there are no real disturbing dream visions, a better example can be seen in other gothic novels, and I will used The Castle of Otranto, this includes the omen that “That the castle and lordship of Otranto should pass from the present family, whenever the real owner should be grown too large to inhabit it. ” or any phenomenon that may be seen as a portent of coming events other than in some way or Victor’s dream of Elizabeth death.
, an omen that it is soon to be his time to die while at every turn the women are put into distress and a epitomising the feel that all will happen in an almost omnipotent fashion will come to its end. This should be included into your novel in some shape or form to give it a more gothic feel overall and in many cases it relates to the supernatural events to come. Women should partake in two main forms to extenuate the gothic; firstly they should at some point during your novel be in some form of distress.
It should contain an appeal to the pathos and sympathy of the reader, the female characters should face events that leave them fainting, terrified, screaming, or sobbing. A lonely, pensive, and oppressed heroine is often the central figure of a gothic novel, so her sufferings are even more pronounced and the focus of attention. This can be seen by the threat made to Elizabeth’s life through the dream in chapter 5. You could increase this more because the women are often abandoned, left alone (either on purpose or by accident), and have no protector at times.
Elizabeth is left in Geneva alone with the monster (even if only in victors mind) wanting to hunt her down and kill her. You could use this to great effect and continue it to a degree that that the women should be threatened by or with the presence of a tyrannical male, this could range in your novel from a king, lord of the manor, father, or guardian, to demand that one or more of the female characters do something intolerable. The Monster howls in rage and utters the ominous words: “I shall be with you on your wedding night.
” All the while it s rain outside with another choice to creating horror and suspense with metonym in the case referring to the darkness of the situation. Using threading tones and the fact that he “shall” implying that the wedding day will be in no way pleasant. The woman may be commanded to marry someone she does not love (it may even be the powerful male himself), or commit a crime. This bring about examples of the next gothic case in point with most of the book contain much overwrought and tense emotions which often are highly sentimental.
This tool should be used to create various emotion ties with your protagonist and the reader, often in the case of gothic novels the sensation of impending doom and gloom, however it can also be used for exultant situations as well, as in Frankenstein chapter 5 with “I had desired it with an ardour that far exceeded moderation; but now that I had finished, the beauty of the dream vanished, and breathless horror and disgust filled my heart.
“, Shelley uses specific language such as “breathless horror” to symbolise the overwrought sense of disgust he felt, filling his heart suggesting that it not only hurt his senses but was a major blow to his spirit. However all of this means very little if you fail to adhere to one element that must be true if you aim is to create a truly gothic novel and the is vocabulary and syntax of the gothic writing; this is of the utmost importance
The constant use of the appropriate vocabulary to set creates the atmosphere of the gothic. This includes “I took refuge in the courtyard belonging to the house which I inhabited; where I remained during the rest of the night, walking up and down in the greatest agitation, listening attentively, catching and fearing each sound as if it were to announce the approach of the demoniacal corpse to which I had so miserably given life.
” With settings and places more suited to the time such as a courtyard, however using less common words such as greatest agitation to denote more of a tone of authenticity and demonical corpse (never referring the victors creation as a human or even some form of humanoid) standing for deeper emotions than just a monster. However that is not all that it requires for gothic writing, include the way that questions are presented “with infinite pains and care I had endeavoured to form? ” which could be translated as I had work hard to form.
I recommend therefore that you must really acquaint yourself with the general genre if you have not already and I recommend both Frankenstein and The Castle of Otranto which both brilliant representations of not only language but the points that I have already mentioned. Finally I would sat that in order for you book to match that of Shelley’s you may want to include some issues surrounding ethical issues at the time, and as an example think of the issues surrounding the other title of Shelley’s novel being “The Modern Prometheus” this in the case of Frankenstein is the issues surrounding playing god.
This brought about by greater scientific and medical advances in her time. You may use this to make your story to bring about a deeper meaning than that just of a ghost story. To conclude, I hope that the guidelines that I have provided will help you succeed in you overall goal of creating a true gothic novel. This can be easily achieved by following the simple process of metonymy of gloom, tragic females, tyrannical males, supernatural events, overwrought emotion and an ominous dream.
It may seem like a daunting task however I will always offer more support and advice if you feel that you need it and I hope to read your novel and give my opinion on it, which I am sure will be great. Yours Sincerely Dr M. Yellehs Show preview only The above preview is unformatted text This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Mary Shelley section.