When I typed those ‘two little words’ at the end of my story, I think my brain decided to hit the ‘off’ switch. I’ve been brain dead ever since. I spent the weekend playing solitaire, and fiddling around with various non-computer/writing related stuff. I haven’t looked at the Delving Deep ms yet – I want it to sit for a while. But I’m having an incredibly hard time focussing on anything, even reading some favourite old books, I find myself turning pages and realizing I’d not absorbed a word that had been written.
Then I read today’s Horoscope:
Have you been thinking about finding a new career — or giving your current career a major boost? Well, this is a great day to investigate the classes or other professional training you’d have to go through — sign up right away! You have a real chance to achieve some of your cherished goals right now — the stars say that things have never been more possible. There is no reason to hesitate. But this phase won’t last forever, so take advantage of it while you can
So despite my lack of firing synapses, I tried to work on my pitch today. Now I’ve taken two pitch courses – one just finished by Laurie Schnebly Campbell. The other is only halfway done, but both instructors talk about writing the Goal Motivation and Conflict of your characters and their character arc. However, the story I’ll be pitching is an erotica novella that takes place over only two days. It’s definitely not Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind. (Scarlett O’Hara grew? Did she? I never thought she grew beyond the selfish prig she started out as. Fiddle dee dee indeed!)
Anyway, in my story, there’s not a lot of character growth occurring in those 48 hours. The heroine’s done a lot of growth before the reader meets her, though you find out how she’s reclaimed her identity as you read. Hero #1 (which is a problem in itself, the pitch courses never mentioned double heroes) is pretty secure though he doesn’t like Hero #2 being on the scene. And Hero #2 – well, he’s got issues and there is a character growth for him. So each character does have some internal conflict and the heroine’s ex-hubby comes on the scene to provide some external conflict, but not in a huge quantity the way Pitch course instructors want.
So in desperation I wrote to Janet Miller aka Cricket Starr who taught the Erotica course I just took. And she said:
In this case you aren’t building a lasting relationship so you don’t need to focus on that, but there is still a lot of sex going on and it does affect the characters. Why is that? How are they changed as a result of the sex? That is the character development you want to describe.
Good to consider. The sex has to have a purpose, not just be meaningless, and in my story each scene does advance the plot line and character growth such as it is. So I’ll work from there I guess.
If my brain ever kicks back into gear, that is.