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Speaking of the In-between

Only knocked out 3000 words this week...

But it was one of those 'top 10 best writing weeks' kind of week. A plot-a-licious plot-y plot-plot-plot kind of week.

Last month, I wrote a short story that links the antagonists of Greenshores' Book I to Book II. This past week detailed the First Act arc in a second short story, allowing me to plum the depths of the antagonists even further than the general plotting allowed. Sure, I've got the characters detailed out and all of that. I've got Act I all mapped out in a chapter-by-chapter checklist. However, to do the 'walk a mile in their shoes' thing via a short story brings new expanses to the character (as well as some nifty plot devices that will further strengthen Book II and the act's overall arc.

I should elaborate on something. At the heart of Book II is a straight-forward murder mystery. This is a new genre for me.

Sort of.

I grew up on Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christy. My rainy Sundays usually had a little Thin Man or Charley Chan mixed into them. As a child of the 1970's, I was treated to a weekly dose of the NBC Mystery Movie. These days, I've get my fix from whatever deviousness is cooked up on BBC America. Over the years, one simple rule stands clear: the structure is consistent, but the events / motivations within are where the puzzle lay.

The short stories written further explore the motivations of each character, and how those motivations interact (or don't).

All I've got to say is this: Give a short story a shot, from the primary antagonists' POV. Where they came from, what motivated them into becoming the antagonist, right on down to the actions of (and after) the opening chapters of the book you are creating. It will serve your protagonist well, and it will open up a world of possibilities for you!

-Dave

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