Would I look forward to writing a battle scene in a technothriller? Probably not. The one thing I don’t want my battle scenes to resemble is an extremely literal Let’s Play of Command.

I consider using Command to be very useful to get the general feel for how a battle would go, but I wouldn’t use a demonstration scenario as an exact simulator. Having read too many battles in very bad books that did resemble simple after actions reports/let’s plays of various wargames, I fear repeating it.

Plus focusing entirely on numbers takes away from the feel that a good story needs. Losing one aircraft in an attack run but conveying the feeling of terror works far better than losing five aircraft but having it come across as a boring history document written long after the engagement. (I’ve seen both, unfortunately)
If I go for Attack of the Mosaics, which is the most technothriller-esque work of the concepts I posted, or another story of that nature, Command can be used-in a limited way. I do not want the characters to play second-fiddle to the equipment.

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One thought on “Wariness About Writing Battle Scenes

  1. I’ve always found battle scenes difficult to depict. So much is happening. Where should the action be based? Does the action add to the story? It’s tough to know when and whether a battle scene is really necessary to the narrative or if I’m just squeezing action in because it seems exciting. I guess I’ve come to the conclusion that everything that happens in a story must perform multiple functions – character developing, storytelling, world building, entertaining etc. It’s easier to identify that than to do it, however.

    I’m slightly digressing from what your post is about. In my mind a battle scene is more effective from the perspective of people within the battle, completely focused on their immediate surroundings/role/mission – and that can also be someone in command (not sure if you mean Command as in an officer or someone giving orders or in some kind of computer command kind of way?).

    Like

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