Drama and Character Arc

Listened to a reading by Sarah M. Broom, author of The Yellow House. It’s memoir and they're an award-winning journalist as well as a spectacular writer. So, the description of writing process may not apply well to me.

One of the audience questions was on rewriting. The short answer, “that’s the writing process, isn’t it?” As a software developer by trade, maintenance is everything in software; to an extent, I think maintenance parallels rewrite.

The long answer to the question was a description of doing a rewrite per major character, to make sure they had a proper arc. Enlightening. Ah. This seems very interesting — locate each character’s scenes and see if there is a proper arc with obstacles to overcome and interactions that show who they are.

I’ve been reading story after story from critters.org. It’s been a lot of fun looking carefully for the essential elements of Setting, Character, Plot, and Theme.

(I’ve had an author tell me I’m a poor reviewer for failing to see the nuanced structure of their story. Hard to know how to respond when someone cusses out a beta-reader working for the love of the art. I thanked them.)

It was good to hear a writer talk about their craft. I’m going to be rethinking my approach, and this goes into my checklists.

 © F. L. Stevens 2019