In his book, A Million Miles in 1000 Years, Donald Miller talks about his struggle to edit his memoir, which was too boring to make a good movie. The writers had to change several elements, throw in a bunch of conflict, and look for ways to spice up the plot.
Miller started to do the same with his life. That's why he set out to create change and sought adventure. It was cool, because he paralled it with his writing career--something we all can relate to. Like adding conflict. How many times have we heard that? Conflict is good. It's interesting. It's dynamic, as opposed to static.
He added risk. Again, something we need. The characters need to want something enough that they'll do anything to achieve it. It raises the stakes, and when correctly written, commits the reader until the end.
Last week, I had to laugh when I got my contest results back. I was given a lot of suggestions, which is what I wanted. I didn't enter because I wanted to win; I entered to see where I stood.
So, I started laughing, when with all these thoughts about conflict and risk swirling through my head, I read comments about how I needed to add even more conflict. The best was the absolutely correct observation that my MC is too introspective and reactive (versus proactive). At that point I almost fell off the couch, because it's something I've been told by people about myself.
I didn't mean to make her like me. And really, I didn't. MC is very different. But in this way, we favor each other.
Now I'm at a standstill, trying to figure out how to be less introspective and reactive. Maybe not for myself, but for my MC. How can I get her out of her head? Seriously--any help you have would be greatly appreciated. Because while I realize it can interest a few people and still be a good story (I had one judge give me a great score and high praise, proving the fact of subjectivity to me...my three scores differed widely), the suggestion feels right. Only I don't know how to do it.
I'm still in the process of wading through the suggestions and praying about what to do. It's confusing to have 3 different perspectives. They each gave me something to consider, sometimes in opposition to what another judge said. It's all made me wonder:
What kind of story have I written?
Have you ever wondered that?
Looks like I have a lot of thinking to do. Oops, there goes the introspection again.
See y'all Monday!
2 hours ago