Saturday 4 May 2013

Does YOUR MC show counter-emotional reactions?


“Stop in the middle of a sentence, leaving a rough edge for you to start from the next day — that way, you can write three or five words without being “creative” and before you know it, you’re writing.” ~ Cory Doctorow


Find a scene that’s all action. Drop in an emotion that your protagonist doesn’t expect to feel.

An archer threw himself from a rocky outcrop and stabbed at her neck with a short sword. She blocked him with her shield and stunned him with the wild magic she harnessed from the powerful surge of fear that flooded the clearing. Mendia shrugged the man’s dead weight away her as she turned. From the red glow in the distance it seemed Ardac was channelling envy. Didn’t the magician who wielded his own emotion suffer recurring bile? She grinned. Then, forcing her wayward spell wider to enhance her protection, she slashed on towards Galan and the heart of the conflict.

How do you think a counter-emotional reaction from your protagonist would improve a scene?


  1. Very interesting. I haven't really thought about this, but I know I've added counter-emotions.

    1. Hi Medeia
      I loved this tip from Donald Maass. It would be a rare person who wasn't experiencing conflicting emotions during an event or incident. It is the rare reactions when the emotion shocks the character which I like best.

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