Okay first, I think my Wii yoga instructor was trying to kill me this morning. Seriously. Crane pose? At 6:30 in the morning? When I’m no longer 20 and my butt is 25 pounds heavier than it was back then? ON THE FRIGGIN’ BALANCE BOARD? You have GOT to be joking. I couldn’t do it when I WAS 20 and much lighter.
Second, Dark and Early has gone well so far this week, with me knocking out 600+ words the last two mornings. So big yay on that.
I have run into a problem though. I realized my hero for Red is way too well adjusted. Well, okay, maybe well adjusted is not precisely right. He’s got something of an anger problem. But his character arc is somewhat lacking. My heroine is SOLID. I actually STARTED this book off with the idea for her character arc, which is totally unheard of for me. Ask Pot. So I’ve been moving right along, approaching the halfway mark, and Sawyer’s becoming more and more difficult, as broody teenage boys are wont to do. But I figured out that that’s part of why. Because I really don’t know what his inner demon is that’s preventing him from achieving his external goal.
Character arc and inner GMC has always been a problem for me. I am THE ACTION CHICK. You want STUFF TO HAPPEN? I am your girl.
You want to know the deep inner motivations for a character’s actions? I can give you a whole clinical profile from months’ worth of sessions with my characters on a virtual sofa.
But for some reason, I really SUCK at thinking about character arc and how the character changes over the course of the story.
That’s kind of embarrassing to admit given my professional field.
It comes up with almost every book, and I can’t TELL YOU how many different ways Pot has come up with to try to clarify it for me. I mean, y’all, this is HER THING. She’s really freaking GOOD at it. And I seem to be the remedial student who needs a refresher course and brainstorming for EVERY SINGLE BOOK.
For those of you also in my boat, a couple of books I’ve found immensely helpful are Debra Dixon’s Goal, Motivation, and Conflict as well as Larry Brooks’ Story Engineering (review forthcoming probably next week as I FINALLY found which box it went into during the Oh my God, people are coming to look at the house! Quick CLEAN!). Thanks to these and to Pot’s endless tutelage, I have a handle on what purpose the arc is supposed to serve, how it fits in, how it should be shown.
But damned if I know what the heck Sawyer’s is.
If he was not a POV character who shares almost equal space as Elodie, I wouldn’t worry about it. He’d just be our broody hero, love-interest. But even though it’s really fundamentally her story, he has to change too. So that’s my project this week. To figure out what he has to overcome. Meanwhile, I’m moving forward with all the Elodie POV scenes.
And trying to figure out how to permanently ban crane pose from my New U Yoga repertoire…