Conflict is paramount in a good story. As much as we love our characters we must put roadblocks in their way, creating hardship and drama, to write a compelling tale. In thinking about the plot for the second book in my Trinity Falls Series this week, I've been pondering crisis and climax, looking for "THE BIG ONE," and then real life reared its head and threatened to bring a friend to her knees. While my heart broke, it reminded me that sometimes it's the little things that pile up and tumble like dominoes.
I'm sure most of you have had those times in your life when you throw up your hands and ask yourself "What else could go wrong?" "Could things get any worse?" I know I always knock on wood after asking that last one. It always seems things can, and do, get worse before better. Your problems don't have to be big things. Maybe alone none of them would even be a blip on the radar, but combined, they bury you. The same is true for your characters. Stop and think about consequences. You make one mistake and everything snowball’s from there.
An everyday example could be making an accounting error in your checkbook. What starts out a simple mathematical error causes a check or more to bounce. Each bounced check results in a thirty to thirty-five dollar overdraft fee. When you're short of funds to begin with, this just adds insult to injury. The fees add up, cutting into the money you have for the next week’s bills and make you short. If this is your story, what happens then? Does your hero/heroine bounce more checks in an effort to catch up, piling on the fees? Maybe there's no money for groceries. Without gas money they can't get to work, which puts them further in the hole. How embarrassing is it when the school starts calling because there are no funds in your child's lunch account? Does your character's electric get turned off? Does the bank threaten to repo their car or foreclose on their house? It is the domino effect.
This is just one example, but I think you see where I’m going. One tiny error and you can lose everything. If you can see the reality, so can your readers. Create conflict that they relate to. Your readers will bond with the characters as they go through trials and tribulations that they themselves have been through or fear. Building this connection will draw your audience in and invoke their heart, and that is what makes for a great story.
Well .. it is the New Year. No more excuses of holidays to put off editing, promoting, and writing. So ... my first novel is now in the hands of a couple trusted people for a read over. I started a website last night. (It's a WIP and not public yet) And I have dusted off 2009's NaNo novel and started revisions. 2012 is looking good.
I've been busy this past week with preparations for both Christmas and Club Justice. My family will all be home this year! My youngest brother is a MP and just returned from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He will be stationed at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri now, but will be bringing his wife and two sons home to Indiana for a visit. The second to the youngest will be coming in from a more tame local of Houston, but we will be happy to see him just the same! LOL The other three of us just stayed right here. *wink*
Between the phone calls, emails, and texts that surround this time of year I have found little time to write. Don't think I have been idle though! I commissioned a book cover made for Club Justice that I can use to publish it in ebook format and in part for print through CreateSpace. So part of those emails flying was looking at mockups, requesting changes, and trying to bring the vision/dream in my head to fruition. I also spent a lot of time looking into CreateSpace. If anyone has any experience with it I would LOVE to hear about it, bad or good.
Other than that ... I've sent the MS to a trusted friend for a read over for story line and have spoke with another who is very good at proofreading for both content and technical aspects. I don't expect anyone to have time until after the first of the year, but it feels good to be shuffling forward in my quest. So that is my update. I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and are gifted with family, love, and creativity.
Yes I have been writing something, just not BLOG entries! LOL 87,608 words of blood, sweat, and tears! Finishing felt AMAZING! I was on top of the world. I read through it, start to finish tweaking and editing, and loved it! *Thank God I trusted my writing partner in those moments of doubt* Call it vanity, but it is a good feeling to read back over your work and enjoy it.
So, with that finished, I have a couple people that have agreed to read over it and offer their thoughts and expertise. *hugs!* However, what no one warned me of ... now comes the hard part. What do I do with my baby now? Do I go for ease and instant gratification and put it up on Amazon through the KDP program, or do I shop it around to try and find a publisher interested? It doesn't fall easily into a genre category. The tale is of family and love. It involves drama, crime, & passion. Maybe the encompassing mainstream? Ughhh I'm in uncharted waters here people. Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated!
I can't believe it has been 6 months! *BLUSHES* Unbelievable! I wish I had some fabulously creative excuse that would inspire you all, something to tug at the heart strings and put you all firmly behind me ... but truth be known it was just pure laziness and life that kept me away.
For much of those six months I've indulged my creative side with little tales inspired by contest prompts on Writing.com or played at a round robin story with a dear friend. TONS of fun, but not the step towards further publication I had hoped for. I've recently picked up my novel WIP, Club Justice, and dusted it off in hopes of digging back in. I hope that I can stick to the task there, as well as here, and continue my journey towards publication of a longer piece. Funny how you have to finish it first. lol
Oh! And what would a BLOG visit be with out a bit of shameless self promotion? LOL I did have a couple more short stories hit the Amazon site while I was gone. These stories are of the naughty erotic variety, always a genre near and dear to my heart. *Wink* Give them a peek if you get at chance!
I am A 42 year old Scorpio from rural Indiana that loves to lose myself in the escape of the written word. We remember the characters that we laugh with, love with, and cry with. I thrive on making my reader FEEL.
In the last couple months of 2010 I had seven short stories accepted to anthologies,my first time in print, two more joined the published ranks in January 2011, and one since. I am super excited to be taking this first step towards my dreams. I am currently working on a novel.
"Your acting, or your writing, is not yours to judge. So saying "I'm not very good at this" is some sort of protective mechanism, and it will keep you from sharing it with people. You have to be willing to fearlessly expose yourself." ~Lee Tergesen~