Presentation on theme: "Writing 101 Scene Building. Don’t write the whole story all at once A story is made up of many scenes It is important to work on writing scenes before."— Presentation transcript:
Writing 101 Scene Building
Don’t write the whole story all at once A story is made up of many scenes It is important to work on writing scenes before writing the whole story
1. The Character’s Goal A scene is driven by the main character’s needs and desires The goal must be obvious to the reader Goals change from scene to scene even though there is an overall goal for the story
example from Fellowship of the Ring (Book 1 of Lord of the Rings): Will Frodo avoid the attention of the Nazgul and reach the town of Bree? Will Frodo reach Rivendell before the Nazgul catch him? Will Frodo reach safety in Rivendell? Will Frodo and the Fellowship of the Ring reach Mordor safely?
2. Conflict A scene is not meaningful unless there is conflict Can be internal or external Should be an obstacle in the way of the character’s goal End the scene in disaster, it raises the stakes which adds tension
Example Will Frodo avoid the attention of the Nazgul and reach the town of Bree? No. Frodo reaches Bree, but the Nazgul have “ scented ” him and are on the trail. Now he has much less chance of reaching Rivendell safely. Will Frodo reach Rivendell before the Nazgul catch him? No. Frodo is found and stabbed by a Nazgul knife that poisons him. Now he will probably die before reaching safety.
Will Frodo reach safety in Rivendell? Yes, Frodo does reach safety, but then must embark on an even more dangerous journey to take the ring to Mordor. Will Frodo and the Fellowship of the Ring reach Mordor safely? No. Frodo is forced to go on with only Sam when Boromir betrays him. Now the trip to Mordor becomes much more difficult because the stronger members of the fellowship can no longer be there to help.
One of the real secrets of writing a good story is that as a writer you cannot be nice to your characters. you almost need to be intentionally mean. Make life difficult for your character. If she succeeds against small obstacles, give her harder ones. If she still feels confident and happy, put her into situations that will fill her with despair and destroy her self-confidence. By doing so, you will make the story more interesting and will help the reader to identify more closely with the character.
3. Change Characters have to change after they experience conflict No change means a character is not dynamic…and that’s bad Change can be positive or negative