Monday, 19 January 2015

Inner turmoil as the basis for a plot.

I'm back at my computer now that it has been repaired and returned to me after it had an accident. In its absence I wrote by hand but missed adding to my existing work badly. I need to write to stay sane. As long as I can write stuff down and channel my thoughts I can be cheerful.

Being computer-less and also sharing a house with poorly family members and being poorly myself I have watched a lot of telly. I don't usually and enjoyed it very much. Too much. I'm weaning myself off it this week. What I noticed about a lot of the drama programmes is the plots.

Some rely heavily on violence and shocks or they start out being very exciting and scary but taper off in the concluding scenes. Why is this?

I think it happens when the story is driven by plot and not character. Viewers like action. Nothing new there but in order to create drama through a character we need time to get to know them and understand when something out of the ordinary has happened for them. 

Also, a lot of drama is internal and invisible. Think about the panic you feel when you get an unexpected bill or realise you have arrived at work without an important document. Perhaps things become more visible when you bump into your ex or someone you had an argument with and more visible still when you are pushed or shouted at.

Lots of people cover their internal dramas. Inner torment  isn't as easy to show in a dramatic way on telly as it is in a short story. 

It might be interesting to write a short story (500-1500 words) about a person who appears to be living life as usual when in fact they are in a state of turmoil. Sometimes the ordinary can be used to heighten drama because it's close to home. Think about how to introduce the inner action and how to give the story a good end. Good ends are every bit as important as good beginnings.

Could your story frighten anyone or leave them feeling affected. Have a go.