Reflection: Writing Fiction
As writers go I do not consider myself to be anything special. I am not sure I would want to be the next best sellers list. My writing provides with a release from the cruel reality we all know as life. I enjoy creating plots with from a single thought, idea or with a single word.
Fiction allows me to explore this world from different viewpoints. It’s a bit like looking after somebody else’s child for a couple of hours. You know that it is not a permanent arrangement as you will be handing the child back when parents arrive home.
Writing fiction is pretty much the same. I am are walking in the footsteps of others as long as I want to or until their story reaches a conclusion. It is all about trying to see the world, their world, as they see it. It is just like being that fly on the wall.
Difference is that it is not real. It is all just make believe. Yes, stories can be based on true events or situations. The characters could also be real people or based on real people. Stories are often fantasies of an adventurous and fertile mind. But, with fiction I can try out all the possible scenarios and chose one that fits. In fiction creativity flows without any restrictions and rules. It is a bit like the tabloid press today where it is difficult to differentiate between the fake and a real news.
Anyone can write and anyone can tell stories. I believe that everyone has a good story to tell. Getting your story onto paper is not quite so easy. As would-be writer I have learned my craft by studying the works of others and writing. Each story that I write follows my own personal template or formula.
I remember my old English teacher telling me that every story must have a beginning, a middle and an end. She went on to say, ’Say what you’re going to say, say it, and then said that you have said it’
Actually, a more modern way of looking at is that every story starts with a dilemma or problem, a main character whose task it is to take action, overcome several obstacles and emerge triumphant. This character will have learned something along the way.
There are many different models and approaches. I tried them all, but come back to the simple 3 Act Plot. If you are planning to write a novel, then short stories are great way of mastering the art of writing stories.
For me, stories have three main elements: People, places and problems. If like, the 3P’s of any story.
Problems take the form of a Crisis, Change or Conflict. If you like, the 3 C’s that define the story.
I might not ever become a famous writer, but one day I hope that I can be a stepping stone for the next great writer. I enjoy want I write and the stories that I tell. Yes, there are some stories that do not work so well. But then life can be like that too.