Alexander Crombie

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Prologues

Have you ever wondered what a prologue is? or whether to use it in the book you’re writing?
Below are a few thoughts by others on the topic, including a definition.

Prologues: what are they and how did they originate?

Some more on prologues.

A very useful post.

Why not to have a prologue.

I’ve noticed in recent years that the word Prologue is being substituted with Foreword (common in academic/non-fiction writing but becoming more popular in fiction) and Introduction. I suppose essentially ‘pre-story’ is the best substitute for the prologue whereas foreword and introduction generally provide other information the author thinks the reader should know, such as the reason for compiling a collection of short stories. As a reader, it depends on what I’m reading the book for as to whether I read the pre-story sections, as a minimum they all get a skim through. And for some of the information which is often included in the pre-writing section, it could work just as well at the end as an after-word. Here I’m thinking in particular of historical novels where the author sets out what they changed/adapted from the historical account – very useful for those of us who like to check historical accuracy…

TSL books which stand out as having a prologue/pre-story (other than historical books) include:
Alexander Crombie’s So Long Henry Bear.
Jitendra Kumar Mishra’s play The Cobbles of Kanke
James Martin Charlton’s historical fiction script Divine Vision
Ezra William’s short story collection Selected Pieces and Sue Hampton‘s various short story collections.

first published 25 September 2017, updated 2024

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Fiction – a platform for challenging topics

Fiction can be a handy tool for tackling issues that are hard-hitting. For example:

Right of Possession (Naomi Young-Rodas) – dealing with an abusive partner.
Archie’s Children (Beatrice Holloway) – a criminal father returns to stay with his adult children.
A little piece for mother (Barbara Towell) – the impact of a holocaust survivor on her daughter growing up in London.
Become the Wind (Alexander Crombie) – dealing with blind people.
So Long Henry Bear (Alexander Crombie) – prisoner of war survivor’s guilt.
The Eye of the Clown (Alexander Crombie) – responses to physical disfigurement.

And if you prefer non-fiction, these might be of interest:

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Alexander Crombie

About Alexander Crombie

Alexander Crombie lives in the English Midlands. He is married to Caroline; they have three children. In 2004 he was awarded the MBE for Services to the Blind Community.

Alexander lost his sight during his teens, since when he has experienced many of the joys and sorrows, the crises and life changes that impact the story BECOME THE WIND. It is his heart-felt hope that you will come with him into the world of his principle character, and that you will want to TURN THE PAGE.

Books by Alexander