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21 June 2006 @ 02:28 am
Write Towards The Goal  
World Cup is blaring in the background which is making me think about story goals. (If you've EVER watched soccer you don't need to ask why "Goooooaaaaal!" is ringing in my head.)

Anyway, I got to thinking about this because I've been working on getting back into a long story that I started a while ago but sort of mentally stall on whenever I sit down in front of the computer screen. (Yes, Yuma, it's "Slave Camp".)

So I asked myself, what is the goal of this story?

I mean for the characters not the plot. The plot is the plot. The plot is the monster goes boom. The bad guy goes boom. The goa'uld goes boom. The...well, something or other is bound to go boom, right? But that's not the part we care about.

We really just care about the characters. That feeling of warmth in the end. Of something personal being resolved for them.

So...what's the goal for the character and how can I write towards it so that every event either shows how that character needs it, or is building a way towards it?

(NCIS Example)

Maybe the goal is to show to Kate and McGee how Tony's loud mouthed frat attitude actually hides a guy who will carry you to hell and back if you fall.

(Firefly Example)

Maybe the goal is to show how everyone else would take care of River if Simon were hurt, that in fact Simon has back-up and doesn't even know it amongst the Serenity crew.

(Supernatural Example)

Maybe the goal is to show how even when all the evidence is against him Dean would never EVER stop looking for Sam if he were to disappear one day while on a hunt, he is that freaking loyal.

(Lol. Can't tell I've been reading, "Brotherhood" [ Pyramids Press ] tonight for my fic fix can you? I love those two stories [ Yuma ] and [ K Hanna ] wrote.)

For me, and my story, I decided, the goal was to show how Jack and Daniel would have gone from strangers to friends even meeting under different alternate circumstances. It took me two seconds to figure it out and slap it on a post-it note on the cover of my notes for that story.

With that extra focus, I'm hoping, that it'll help me write scenes now not to tell how they get away from the bad guys (plot) but instead to tell how they learn to become friends (goal) as they're working together to get away from the bad guys (while in the nasty bad labor camp, with all the evil in the world pouring right down on them, yes, just before everything does in fact go "boom".)

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