Tag Archives: conflict

Practical Prompt 7/6/16: Scene Structure Part 1

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

For our June “Learn to Write by Reading” challenge, we invited you to examine books that had well constructed scenes. Now, apply what you learned to your own manuscript.

Look at a scene that you particularly enjoyed from the book you read for this month’s challenge. What elements made the scene work? Often, the underlying structure is well hidden, but a dynamic scene will open with a character who has a specific goal. Notice that the character’s goal in an individual scene is not generally the same as the character’s larger story goal; rather it is a small step in the story goal’s direction. Other characters, though, have different agendas which will put them in conflict with the scene’s main character. That conflict is one of the things that makes a scene interesting.

Take a scene you’re having problems with from your work in progress. If the scene is too ho-hum, there may not be enough conflict. Ask yourself if your scene’s main character has a specific goal at the beginning of the scene. If not, give her one. Then make sure other characters and/or circumstances work against the major character as she tries to achieve her goal.  That will help ratchet up the drama and interest level throughout the scene.

Practical Prompt 3-30-16: Fight Scenes Part 3

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

For our March “Learn to Write by Reading” challenge, we invited you to examine books in which the authors did a great job writing fight scenes.

Now, apply what you learned to your own manuscript. Make sure the tone of your fight scene matches the tone of your story. A slap-stick fight scene with witty dialogue and pratfalls may be perfect for a comedy, but totally out of place in a gritty drama.

Practical Prompt 3-23-16: Fight Scenes Part 2

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

For our March “Learn to Write by Reading” challenge, we invited you to examine books in which the authors did a great job writing fight scenes.

Now, apply what you learned to your own manuscript. After blocking in your fight scene add in the emotion. What are your characters feeling as the fight progresses? Fear? Excitement? Anger? Now convey those emotions with body language and dialogue.

What Makes a Fight Scene Good?

Stacey Kite

Stacey Kite

Since our “Learn to Write by Reading Challenge” this month is about writing fight scenes, I’ve been thinking about them a lot lately. Every story needs conflict, all kinds of conflict, but I do admit to having a soft spot for literary violence. I love a good fight or battle scene, but the operative word is good. Continue reading

Practical Prompt 3-16-16: Fight Scenes Part 1

WriteOwls

WriteOwls

For our March “Learn to Write by Reading” challenge, we invited you to examine books in which the authors did a great job writing fight scenes.

Now, apply what you learned to your own manuscript. Block in your fight scene. Where does the fight take place? What props, if any, are involved and how do the characters use them? Then determine the flow of action so that one movement or action logically leads to the next.