Blake Snyder calls it the “Double Mumbo Jumbo” rule:
“…for some reason, audiences will only accept one piece of magic… It’s The Law. You cannot see aliens from outer space land in a UFO and then be bitten by a Vampire and now be both aliens and undead.” (p. 126, Save the Cat)
Too much “mumbo” muddies the story, making it hard for the reader to suspend disbelief. Snyder gives several persuasive examples in his book.
I chose this piece of craft today for two reasons:
- I just spent two hours in the dentist chair, and want an easy subject, and
- The concept of simplicity appeals to me.
I’ve noticed that the longer I write, the less convoluted my plots become. It’s not something I expected, but I think it’s an extension of the magic rule above. Less is more when it comes to “mumbo” and stories. In my head, it’s my KISS rule: Keep it Simple Stupid.
How about you? Do you have mumboesk rules?