Metaphor-3-2-1. Go.

I’ve been writing about comparisons. Similes and Hyperboles. There are many types of comparisons in writing. Today’s is Metaphors.  While technically Simile and Hyperbole are sub-types of Metaphors, Metaphors on their own are different.

Metaphors are figures of speech that make a hidden or implied comparison. Unlike similes that use words such as ‘like’ or ‘as’ Metaphors make a more subtle comparison.

A metaphor comparison is between two things that are unrelated but share some common characteristics.  What I mean is a resemblance is made between two different or contradictory objects that’s based off common characteristic.

When I portray an action, person, place or thing as being something altogether different. A well known example of this is “She is the black sheep of the family”.   The person is not actually a black sheep but a black sheep is different from the herd of white and would be kept or would stay away from the herd. Thus suggesting she is unlike everyone in her family in some obvious way.

Some more examples that are used often in literature:

He’s a night owl
Has the eyes of a hawk. (This could be a simile if written: ‘has eyes like a hawk.)
You’re an early bird. (Apparently I recall the bird metaphors easily…)
Lost in a sea of sorrow
The sound of coffee brewing is music to my ears

Metaphors are most commonly found in songs and poetry. Both try to convey a strong visual and emotional connection between two things in a creative way. I don’t write poetry as it’s not my strong suit so I’ll do what I do best. And I love me a good metaphor.

Valery chewed the hangnail on her finger as Cal took notes. “I don’t know what else to say Detective, Sasha’s life was an open book. She didn’t keep anything from me.” She frowned. “Except the nature of Baylor and her involvement with you.”

Cal looked up from the pad. Valery had no idea what they’ve been through and for good reason. It was a nightmare of events.  “Every bit helps. Finding the connection between your boss Clifton and Baylor Crowen is groundbreaking. Now I can investigate Clifton and see where his chains link up to.”

“Can we do anything? It’s frustrating to think he took her as a trophy.”

Cal stood. “With this information I can get a warrant for his computers personal and office. It will cause some disruption.”

“I’ll keep fishing around for information. I don’t care if they have to shut this place down Detective. My heart is broken over this. Please just find her.”

Cal nodded and swallowed hard. He lived with the stench of failure every waking moment. Had he been more aware; this wouldn’t be a problem. Sasha would still be with him and safe. “I’ll take the city apart brick by brick if I have to.”

Metaphors are easy to write if you remember to not use as or like as you would in a simile. They are passports to creativity. They do add a certain flavor to a story by improving the imagery one conjures when reading. I do think they can be hard to spot since so many writers use them. I know I do. I love them. If tucked away nicely they don’t jump out on the page, but add to the ease or flow.

My advice about Metaphors.
As writers, words are the windows to our souls.  Metaphors make dull sentences fly off the page. They splash our imaginations with imagery.

-Sheryl

Other posts

Shut your cake hole

I swear! Or do I?

Copyright © 2017 All rights reserved
Passport

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Aftermath and consequences

I’ll keep this brief because the chapter is not. The aftermath of drinking is usually a hangover, the aftermath of prying into ones secrets is usually anger. Actions have consequences and it is important to include them. After all if I went to the trouble of including them I had better have a way past it all. This is something that needs to be addressed before the story can move on. In Drunken secrets Cal gave Sasha rum on an empty stomach and tried to get her to talk about her secret. Now she’s sober and it’s time for a little reality before things get crazy again.

Sasha woke with a pounding head. Sugar and alcohol on an empty stomach was a recipe for disaster. Her faded foggy memories came into focus as she showered her still aching body.

“That slimy bastard.” She muttered drying her hair with a towel. “Once a cop always a damned cop.” She pursed her lips and went out to find the coffee she smelled and hopefully some Tylenol.

“Good morning.” Cal chuckled and looked at his watch. “Or near afternoon.”
Sasha sat after filling a mug with coffee from the pot on the desk.
“Sleep well?”
She glared at him.
“So you are mad.” Cal waited and cocked his head to the side. “You know it’s mean to tell a detective a juicy tidbit then drop the subject declaring it off bounds.”
She narrowed her eyes and sipped her coffee, downing the Tylenol he left on the table for her.
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have pried.”

“You do realize how despicable you are. How could you ply me with booze and question me like that? Did you think talking about it would make it better? News flash detective, it wont, it will make me bitchier and angrier.” She got up, grabbed a Danish from the tray on the table and stormed to her room, once again the door eased closed with a gentle click even though she pushed heavily on it. Tears fell unnoticed and unchecked.

“Why is he so determined to make me talk about it?” She flopped back on the bed remembering that she fell asleep on the couch.She didn’t mind that he put her to bed nor that he put her clothes away. He was undeservedly kind to her.

Sasha was too distracted to focus on work. “This is crap. My idiot boss wants the impossible. I’m meant to fail this. This is how they get rid of people.” She nearly punched her laptop and when Cal knocked on the door, she nearly threw it. “Dammit I’m mad.” She opened the door.

“I ordered lunch. Mad or not, you need to eat.”

“I don’t want to.”

“Stop acting like a child Sasha. One of these days you have to face whatever was done to make you so angry and unhappy.”

She sat at the table. Grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup. Her favorite. She picked up her spoon. “I’m not unhappy. Just one week out of the year, sometimes two.”

“But you are angry.”
“Damn right I am. This is really good soup by the way.”
“Why do you let Ben win?” Cal asked taking a bite of sandwich.
“I don’t let any man win.”

“Sooo many pins. Listen, whatever Ben did is done. He, I’m assuming moved on and is happy, therefore you let him win. The thing is Sasha, being alone is sad, not something to be proud of.”

“Listen detective, I’m happy. This crap with Baylor on top of my usual self-pity party week has me off my game. I’m not myself right now. I earned the right to be miserable for two weeks. Drop it.”

Cal lowered his chin. “Nobody earns misery for being betrayed. Even one second of misery means he wins.”

Sasha ate silently. He was right, but she would never admit it out loud. She couldn’t stop her misery, but it only lasted for a little while. Then it faded. Mostly.

“I need a vacation from this fake vacation.” She sighed. “Any word on Baylor?”

“No. Nothing. He’s hurt and hiding. If he has any underground connections he could be treated off record.”

“Great. So why not use me as bait?”

“No way. He’ll up the ante now.”

“Why doesn’t he just give up?”

“Because you got him arrested, hit him with your car and you snubbed him at the bar. Not in that order.”

“Funny you should say that, I didn’t snub him. I… I did. I let him use cheesy lines then said no thank you. Just like with you moments before.”

“I wasn’t cheesy and I didn’t use any lines.”

“You don’t need to. I can tell which you’d use if you had. Happens every time I say no. For some damned reason guys try harder as if I’ll magically change my mind.”

“Why don’t you?” He popped the last bite of grilled cheese in his mouth.

“Drop it.” She held her breath. 

Cal swallowed while shaking his head. “Okay Ben ruined you. Wow, he must have been impressive. So what? He gets to be happy and you miserably hate men for the rest of your life?”

“Ugh. I don’t hate men. I just don’t want a boyfriend. It’s why I snubbed you at the bar.”

He smiled slyly. “Who said I was looking for a girlfriend. You assume too much.”

Her mouth fell open. “You are a pig.”

“Now that one’s doubly funny.” He laughed. She took a moment to realize why and laughed too. “Sasha you can’t tell me you locked your heart and libido away for two full years because of one jerk.”

Her face went red and she frowned. “What is wrong with you?”
“Incurable snoop.” He shrugged and looked up startled as the fire alarm went off.
“What?” She jumped up dropping her spoon to the floor.
“Stop.” Cal grabbed her arm as she moved to look at the escape map.
“We have to get out.”

“No. We don’t.” Cal took out his phone and dialed. “Theo do you see smoke?” He listened. “Okay send Ducky around back and call back-up.”

“What’s going on?”

“Relax Sasha. No smoke no fire.”

“Baylor?”

“Maybe, maybe not.”

“We should leave.”

“Yes and get caught up in all the others panicked and running out the pre-determined exits? We’d be separated in seconds. They’ll call me if there’s real smoke or if they see anything suspicious.” They stared at each other a moment, both thinking the same thing. It’s suspicious.

I know that was a long one thanks for sticking it out. Sasha needs one more push I think. Something to get her back up on her feet. The aftermath was dealt with now I can move the story along.

-Sheryl

Other posts

Switch it up, and swap it out.

Desperately procrastinating

Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved

 Faded

Mood swings

I don’t find people to be even tempered. At rest, at work, at home or at play people tend to be who they are for the most part. But, what happens when tempers flair or stress overwhelms? Can a quiet person become loud? Does a calm person snap and start yelling? Sure, people can behave outside their norm, as long as it is infrequent and outside the norm.

When I work on bringing Sasha down, I have her steady personality of hard working, caring, strong minded and level-headed put to the test. Her snippy and mean responses start to peek through when she’s pushed. So when she falls over, her mood changes, and so it should. When someone looses a good job, they don’t just get mad, shrug and say “that sucked”. It affects them, it worms  into their day and alters their personality until they adjust and move on. Sasha was just attacked by Baylor again at her home. Can’t say for sure but a mood swing or two might be in order. Since she just came out of a traumatizing moment I have to bring the tone down and let her settle, then I can slowly build up the anticipation toward the next dramatic event. For now I’ll let her mood wander a bit.

Sasha leaned her head back and looked at the drop ceiling with frustration in her eyes. “Protective custody?” She grimaced. “Where?”

The officer that took her statement tapped his pen incessantly. “Until we have Crowan in custody you need to be fully protected Miss Parsons. We will take you to a day’s inn hotel and post officers outside to guard you.

“Splendid. Can I just book one myself? If I have to do this I’d rather be somewhere nicer.”

“It can be arranged if you wish.” He got up with a huff. She nearly asked why that was offensive as he left. She had no clothes and was banned from her house until they decided to put her there as bait.

“I’ll never be comfortable in my home again.” She muttered to the tabletop. The officer told her with damage to her car it wasn’t safe to drive. When she went off the road, she hit a rock and caused damage. She didn’t even remember or notice hitting a rock. Shock they said twice; she was still in shock. She didn’t think so but what did she know of being in shock.

Cal opened the door and gestured for her to follow him so she did. He had her things anyway. “Officer Cooper said you wanted to waive our hotel for one of your own choice.”

“I didn’t mean to offend but.” She stopped. But what? It was offensive.

“I booked the Linux for you, I figured you wouldn’t want the days inn that we usually use.” He chuckled. “I had a female officer gather some things for you and they will be in your room.” He led her to the parking lot.

“Oh. Um thanks. I’ll pay for the room.” The Linux was a star above what she would have chosen.

“It’s not an issue. The upgrade however means you have to have direct in-house protection.”

She breathed in the cool calming night air in before getting in the car. “Direct in house?”

“Officer in room. Well in the attached suite. Two plain-clothes officers will be stationed outside as well.

“Oh. Who will be in the room with me?”

“I will.”

“You.” She frowned and looked out the window. That was too close. He unnerved her and since she met him, her life has turned to hell. “Does it have to be you?”

“You sure know how to cut a man down.”

“Sorry it’s just.”

“Look Sasha I get it, you made yourself clear at Starches. You’re not interested, not on the market and if you asked me you’re not even remotely honest about why.”

Her head turned fast, her brow furrowed. “I don’t owe you an explanation.”

“No you don’t, we don’t know each other very well. I meant honest to yourself. You’re miserable for some reason and I’m betting it’s mostly your own doing. Regardless, it’s my job to keep you safe. End of story. If you want total strangers watching over you from a car parked obviously on the road, then go to the days inn.”

“No. You’re okay I guess.”

“Good to know.” The sarcasm rolled thick in his voice.

He pulled into the hotel, they got out and he opened the trunk so she could get her belongings. She followed him numbly as they checked in and went up to their room. She tried to look around and appreciate the décor but couldn’t focus.

The room was divided into three, a common room with a couch, table and two chairs flanked by bedrooms that each had their own bathroom.

“Do not leave this room without me, do not use the phone, you can call work in the morning.”

“Whatever Detective Dictator. I don’t need to call work, I was planning to take some time off to work on a project at home. I’ll have to let Val and Anne know that I lost my phone so they don’t freak out and call the… police.”

“Tomorrow. Stay off the internet and if you need anything let me know and I’ll order room service.”

She blinked her burning eyes at him and held her roiling stomach. She was precariously close to throwing up. Her mind heard his words but her body stopped processing. It all came crashing down, the surreal weight of the evening broke her defenses and she started crying.

Cal saw it coming, she was trying too hard to hold it in and be a tough girl. Save it for the movies, he always said. The real world was a whole lot more emotional. She ran for what she presumed was her bedroom and right through to the small bathroom.

Cal sat on the couch to make some calls. He could hear her, that would have to be enough.

A rough night and a rough reaction. Stress and strain can cause outbursts and behavior glitches that can sometimes be embarrassing or even hard to shake. Sasha probably thinks it couldn’t get worse, silly girl, she doesn’t know who controls her destiny. *insert evil laugh.

My advice about mood swings.
They can be serious, dramatic or even funny if you pace them well. Have fun and try having someone get snitty or even silly on the flip of a dime.

-Sheryl

other blog posts

It’s a love hate sort of thing

Hey! Its’ Interjection

Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved

 Anticipation

Chop, chop, prep that character

From bad to worse.

A character created to fall before they rise up, must do so gloriously. The way to get them there must be interesting and exciting. This takes planning and prepwork. Sometimes that can mean going backwards to add it in after the fact. This is fine especially when I’m not sure exactly where things are going until they get there.

For Sasha, the set up needs to be intriguing and potentially dangerous. Her life is shifting, mixing swiftly and the ingredients are smashing into one another causing her to see herself and her life in a different light.

I like to look at a character as if they are holding their plate above their head and I’m heaping on issues and problems for them to deal with, like potatoes and gravy at thanksgiving. The question is how much? That depends on what outcome I want.

To set Sasha up I need her distracted and her mind too full of issues. So I pile them on. I want her to be ready to accept her fall and have the new found strength to push back, get up and fight. It isn’t easy but I try to keep this subtle.

So far the issues I’ve given this particular Protagonist are:
Disapproving parents
A dark secret that makes her refuse to date
Scott pestering her to date him
Her friends nagging her to get over it and date
Baylor attacking her in her home
Amber and Dale bullying her at work
Her self-denied attraction to Detective Cal Thorn who she snubbed
And the following:

Sasha’s nerves were taught and frayed. After avoiding Scott, Amber and Dale she made it to the sanctuary of her small office. She stared off into space as Valery popped her head in the door.
“Hey you okay, why were you so late?” Valery sat primly in the chair across from Sasha’s
“Baylor got out on bail.”
“What!” Valery looked out the open door and lowered her voice as she got up and shut it. “I mean you said he might, but for real?”
“Yeah.” Sasha rubbed her forearms. “This morning, the judge didn’t hear a word I had to say, the others couldn’t identify him. The evidence is in question too. It was an utterly frustrating mess.”
Valery hugged her friend.
“He’s under watch and Detective Thorn said I would be too.”
“So would Baylor come after you?”
Sasha shook her head. “It’s not likely. The detective said if Baylor thinks he’ll walk away from this then he won’t do anything to land himself back in jail. Baylor was so charming and convincing”
“Could he get away with it?” Valery held her friend by the shoulders at arm’s length.
Sasha nodded. “The judge certainly thought so. Oh, Val it was as if she was accusing me of harassing Baylor! Thank God Detective Thorn was there, he was so kind and helpful.”
“You two are spending a lot of time together.” Valery’s suggestive tone was aimed to distract.
Heat crept up Sasha’s cheeks like flames as she looked at her friend. There was nothing she could say. It was a dammed if she agrees, and dammed if she denies type scenario. There is only one course of action possible.
“How is that new guy Jackson? Did he pass your stupid relish test?”
Valery laughed throwing her head back. “Typical Sash, deflect, deflect, deflect. No he piled the barf on his hotdog and ate it with gusto.”
“That’s too bad.” Sasha sat back down.
“Normally it would be, however he figured out that I was put off and made me tell him why.”
Sasha looked up from her hands. “And then what?”
Valery shrugged. “He promised to brush his teeth and never eat it in front of me again.”
“And you’re okay with that?”
Valery put her hand on the door handle. “I have to be, one look from him and I melt. It’s like I’m being burned when his flames for fingers touch me.” Valery chuckled and opened the door. “By the way, we’ll revisit that Detective of yours later.”
“Don’t waste your time Val, he’s just doing his job and I’m still not interested in dating.”
“Uh huh.” Valery closed the door. Her laugh, though muffled, and was easily heard.

I think I’ll add one more thing before Sasha snaps, I won’t say what just yet, but it will be a wild card.

Even though I’m tearing Sasha down it doesn’t need to be all melodrama or blatantly obvious. She is still Sasha, but more aware that things aren’t exactly as they should be, people are not who they pretend to be and her life isn’t heading the direction it needs to go.

My advice about prep-work.
Out of the blue life changing events are okay but are served better if the character is prepped properly. Give them a reason to want to grow or change, give the reader a reason to want them to.

-Sheryl

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Eating emotions

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Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved
Flames

Moving along…

Even I need a break from time to time, that doesn’t mean I’m not busy doing many other things while not writing a specific blog advice piece. The story of Sasha and Cal is progressing and evolving along with my blog post examples. So the following is another chapter from Cal and Sasha’s story. Following on the heels of the last few posts, I wanted to move the story along to get back to some more examples, advice and tidbits. Here is a brief recap. Sasha was attacked by Baylor in her home. Cal Saved her, he’s a cop. Work has been hell for Sasha, she’s being bullied by her co-worker Amber. Scott, another co-worker, has been attempting to date her while his true colours leak out.

While brushing her damp hair Sasha went to the back door in her kitchen after the third knock.
“Wait, the back?” She froze, her breath caught in her throat as the strangeness finally sunk in.
“Sasha I know your home, I can see you. It’s detective Thorn, I’m here on business.”
Shaking her head, she looked through the thin veil of a curtain covering the window. It was Cal and he had coffee. She could use a coffee after tossing and turning all night. She opened the door and stepped aside.
“Come in Detective. Leave your shoes on, the linoleum is old.”
“Do try to not look so miserable to see me.”
“I make no promises Detective. You said it was business. Why didn’t you just call?” She closed the door as he sat at the small kitchen table. Solid wood and seats four, a house-warming gift from Anne. The chairs creaked and the surface was weathered. It was a true antique, not a replica.
“I brought coffee.” He handed her a tall cup. “And some things should be done in person.”
“Thanks. I suppose it would be hard to text me a coffee.” Sasha opened the lid and frowned. The remnants of the previous day still clung, dampening her mood.
“Double cream, double sugar, the way you like it.”
Her light brown eyes met his dark grey ones. “You follow me everywhere I go and show up at my back door with coffee no less, I’m trying not to be creeped out.”
He chuckled. “You had a cup in your recycling bin with DD on it and your shade of lipstick, I saw it Saturday. I also saw what you added to your coffee yesterday. I came to the back door because I didn’t want to make a scene. A blue haired woman was too interested in me.”
“Phyllis my neighbour is out walking her unnaturally slow dog right?”
“She’s just nosy.” Cal sipped his own coffee looking around the soft yellow kitchen. The old marble countertops were well cared for as were the hand carved cabinets.
“I can see why they made you a detective. So to what do I owe this… coffee.”
“I got a call.” He ran his hand over the carvings on the table edge. “Baylor Crowen is up for bail this morning.”
She choked on her coffee and nearly spit it out on the table. “Bail? Isn’t he like super bad?”
“He’s been charged yes, but lawyers are tricky bastards, his lawyer pulled some strings and the judge will be in his favor, she even moved his case to the top of the pile. The evidence was compromised and he’s claiming you invited him home and changed your mind. Since he didn’t leave a mark on you.” He looked at his coffee cup and poked at the lid.
“My word against his. That sucks.”
“Yes it does. Also he’s claiming that I entrapped him and I sort of…” Cal cleared his throat. “Hit him.”
“I noticed, and thank you for that. Will you get in trouble?”
He half shrugged. “Maybe. Don’t worry about it.”
She tapped her finer on the side of her paper cup refusing to look at the large attractive man at her kitchen table. His piercing grey eyes staring and waiting for her to respond or react. “What is the point of having police if the criminals are just let go anyway?”
“The state of the system is not the police departments doing. I’d like you to come to the station to fill out a more specific restraining order before the hearing.”
“It takes over thirty minutes for police to show up for a domestic disturbance, two hours sometimes. How does a piece of paper protect me exactly?”
Cal smiled at her wit. “If he breaks the conditions he’ll go back to jail.”
“Back.” She sighed. “So assuming he wants to pay me a visit, who’s to say he won’t just bring a gun to a paper cut fight?”
He chuckled despite the seriousness of the situation. “At most it will make him hesitate or scare him off. He’ll be watched and more careful.”
“Ooh he’ll be more careful.” She rolled her eyes. “That’s a relief. So Mr. Bash, slash n dash will just be sneakier and plan instead of employing his usual spontaneity.”
Cal covered his laugh this time and she smirked at him. “I’m sorry detective, I make jokes when I’m nervous and I know they’re tasteless.”
“Nervous huh?” He smiled slyly. “And you can call me Cal.”
“Yes, I’m nervous, upset, whatever. There is a crazy man who goes around beating and cutting women’s faces to pulp who wants to finish what he started with me and he’s going to be free to do so.”
“Let’s go get some real breakfast, talk and head over to the station.”
She ran her fingers through her damp hair. “Okay. Let me call Va, ah my supervisor and.” She tilted her head. “Why are you here and not a normal officer?”
“I don’t live far and since I.” He stopped at her arm crossing and her lowered chin. “I’m invested.”
“Invested?”
He cleared his throat. “I’ve been chasing this guy for months, with no links to any evidence and him being careful…”
“You really did use me that night.”
“No. I was off duty at Starches with some non-force buddies. I spoke with  you before I saw Crowen there.”
She pursed her lips. “Why me? I saw the pictures of the other girls on the news, Valery is more his type.”
“My guess.” He said standing. “Is you snubbed him.”
“I didn’t snub him. I’m just not interested in dating anyone.”
“That was made painfully obvious. Even if it’s not true.”
“I go on dates if I have to, but I don’t date. There’s a difference.”
“A date is dating Sasha. Even that chump player thought so.”
“Look Detective, I don’t need.” She stopped. What could she say; he caught her on a date with Scott. “Give me ten minutes.” She set her empty paper cup in the vintage copper farmhouse sink and went upstairs to call work and put on some makeup.
She learned the five-minute makeup routine years ago and her complexion didn’t require more than a thin application of foundation. Today was already turning out worse than yesterday. The least she could do for herself was to primp and look good in her fear addled misery.
Cal looked at his watch when she came back nine minutes later. “Huh.”
“Don’t get all sexist Detective Thorn. I said ten and meant it. Nine is only because my supervisor was busy and didn’t have time to ask why.” She grabbed her purse and car keys.
“I’ll drive.” Cal opened the door.
“Yes you will. I have work to do this afternoon, Baylor Crowen or no, so I’ll follow in my own car. Unless I’m under arrest that is.”
“Not yet.” He smiled and went to his car as she locked up her house.

My advice today.
If you let the story take you on the journey the readers will gladly go too. I’ll get back to the usual post style next time.

-Sheryl

Other posts

Wisely Perpetrating Gullibility

Setting the mood

Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved

 Primp

One step forward and two steps back

The point of any story is to get from one point to another with entertaining bits in-between. Ideally, the protagonist is on a journey of some sort. Probably growth by emotions or achievements.  No path is smooth nor should it be. How dull would it be if nothing ever got in the way? If nothing pushed the hero off course and they sailed on through to the end easy-peasy.  Yawn. Double yawn even.

I am a huge fan of the setback, the ‘are you freaking kidding me?’ moments.  I don’t care for over the top non-stop terrible incident after terrible incident. The kind where the character can’t ever catch a break, so much that it becomes annoying. In those cases it’s more about bad luck or sensational writing without content. Like a sweet strawberry cream filled chocolate without the strawberry filling. It’s okay, because hey, chocolate. But where’s the gooey good stuff?

All in all, the protagonist should be steadily gaining ground and when setback they should triumph and move along to the next obstacle.

What about those obstacles? Well, I try to make them meaningful to the story in some way. Random death or destruction is fun but if it means nothing to anyone in the story, the reader certainly won’t give a rats ass either.

For example, I’ll talk about Sasha. She is pretty high up in importance at the design firm. She knows how to utilize others’ skills appropriately and is a team player. She lacks drive or the push to get her to do what she should really be doing and starting her own agency. So I’ve set Amber on her to make her work life hell and later someone else will toss her to the flames and really light a fire under her butt.  Now in her personal life. She has a secret and a few select people in her life know about it. Something bad happened and slowly, this will be drawn out by a series of relationship related events. Some good, some bad and some very much both. Her friends are trying to force her to move on, men are trying to drag her out of her self-inflicted misery, but eventually someone will give her the courage to let it all go and move on herself. Don’t worry the path is riddled with awful things that make her grow as a person.

Cal is a detective and loves his job. His journey has not been addressed yet, so no spoilers.

Not all journeys are for the greater good. A character can wander from the ideal path and become well… bad. These are fun to play with. You can get super mean and nasty to them to drive them over the edge. Or maybe they’re already there and are the ones tossing out the roadblocks on the sly for the protagonist to trip on.

Think of it like a ladder. The side boards are the progression, the protagonist will climb from the base of the ladder to the top. Some rungs may break and others may be missing. Eventually they need to get to the top. Some characters will be making their way down. It’s easier to go down and even fall fast. Then there are the rungs of the ladder. It’s okay to have rungs, the characters/events that serve only to help someone else up or down. They have no real part in the journey other than that one moment.

Overall, the strong emotion eliciting moments are the ones that will keep the pages turning. How are they going to get out of this mess? What happens next?

My advice about setbacks.
Use them appropriately with cause and purpose. If you over do the set backs then the reader might start eye rolling and get bored or frustrated. Remember its all about the endgame. How can a struggle or set back make the reward sweeter?

-Sheryl

Other posts

Desperately procrastinating

I’m just me

Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved

Base