Welcome to my Wednesday, the first of 2022. I hope you have had a great start to the new year and my best to you in the weeks to come. Let’s get started on this week’s topic – Conflict.

Without conflict, your story is doomed to boredom. It’s conflict that drives the plot and keeps your reader reading. Conflict creates tension, and tension keeps the pages turning.

Use both internal and external conflict. Internal conflict takes place within your character as he fights his own demons and self-doubt. External conflict is simply the obstacle or challenge your character faces.

Let me briefly mention fives areas of conflict to consider as you create.

Man vs. Self – although the battle takes place within, it is usually caused by something from without. Perhaps your normally honest protagonist can only accomplish his goal by dishonesty and/or manipulation. How does that play out?

Man vs. Man – you do not always need to involve physical interaction in this type of conflict, but the resulting conflict will be protagonist against antagonist.

Man vs. Nature – think deserted islands, jungles, wild animals, sweltering heat, etc.

Man vs. Society – this type of conflict pits a character against his government, the police, the military, or some other powerful force — including social norms. It’s usually most effective when Society is personified by a specific villain.

Man vs. Supernatural – consider conflict with vampires, werewolves, aliens or wizards in fantasy, science-fiction or horror stories.

Okay. Experiment. Let me know what you come up with, and I’ll see you next week!



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