This month of daily writing advice will include tidbits, tips, and sometimes tricks. This isn’t a replacement for editing or book coaching, it’s meant as a jumping off point for exploration and thought! I hope it helps! ~Amy
PULL THE RUG OUT FROM UNDER YOUR FAVORITE CHARACTER
When constructing your main character think about this — it’s not so much what happens to her, but what goes wrong, and how she reacts.
This was a tough nugget for me when I started writing fiction, and even sometimes still. I would resolve conflicts in one page. I would give her successes.
Think about the worst possible thing that could happen in the moment. Not only that, but WHY it would be the worst for your character. That’s the key. A fender bender is bad. A fender bender that stops her from making it to her best friend’s party on time is worse. And it’s even worse if she has a propensity for being late or not showing up and she is trying to change. This has less to do with the ding in the car than the ding in her goals. Maybe now she thinks she can’t change. She’s resigned to always disappointing people–and rightfully so, everyone is mad and no one believes her.
Whew. That was quite the riff. Make sense?
Bottom line: be cruel in whatever way works for your story.