Okay, so today is going to be a fun day…here’s Bonnie Edwards to tell you more…
Let’s play what if…
Today, I’m pondering how I build my stories. I tend to start with a situation sort of like: what would happen if an alien landed on Earth and demanded a wife?
My next thought would be…okaaay…this is a romance so what woman would agree to be the wife of an alien? What special circumstances or characteristics would make a normal woman sacrifice herself in this unique way to save the world?
Then I’d have to turn my mind to the hero…is he the alien? Or is he determined to save the heroine? (What does this alien look like anyway? Grotesque or human-like – in which case he could be handsome)
So, in the spirit of story building and brainstorming it dawned on me that we have the makings of a lot of fun today. And just for the record…this is all just for fun, so free your imagination and let’s have a blast!
Here are some questions for you, the reader: (Adults 18 and over only, please!)
Who is the heroine and why is she suited for this particular story?
Does the world know about the alien’s demand for a wife? Or not? If the world knows…then why *this* woman? (Feel free to toss in anything else to help build the story…you know…like why the alien chose Earth…if there’s a connection between our Earth & his world…or whatever)
If we build on what the previous commenters add, maybe by the end of the day we’ll have a foundation with interesting characters, motivations and goals. With a rocking plot too!
So, in the spirit of crazy fun let’s see what we can come up through the day.
Jennifer and I will pick TWO winners of fresh copies of THIGH HIGH, which will be released for sale January 29. Please check back on January 22 for the winning announcement. (Bonnie kindly offered another copy for a winner!)
I know this is outlandish, but it could also be fun. Putting ordinary characters in extraordinary situations provides a lot of opportunity for a writer’s good time. (G)
Finding the right characters for a strong story with a wild premise is vital. Without strong people, (who’re easily understood and clearly written), a wild, out-there story can be flat and uninteresting. There’s no spark for the writer, either.
It’s easy to see that the more outlandish the plot, the stronger the characters have to be.
Characters in less outlandish stories, the quietly engaging reunion story about high school sweeties for example, need to be just as clearly written, just as compelling as characters who are literally out to save the world.
And that can be tough. If the story’s gentle and flows along without a lot of ‘outside’ excitement it’s tempting to write characters who blend into the background.