Mar. 22 Writing Prompt

I’ve debated back and forth about what to cover as the mini hidden lessons in this week’s writing prompts. I still haven’t decided. But that’s okay.

Until I do, we will just have another fun little prompt and I will make a lesson out of it for you.

The key thing to remember here is that any writing practice is good practice. Do you need to devote 10,000 hours and become an expert? No.

But if you want to finish your book you have to write it.

To that, I say if you are going to bother starting a book, it may as well be a spectacular one.

The more practice you get with odd things, such as these writing prompts, the better prepared you will be when you are working on an actual project.

So, let’s take a look at the prompt and then I will show you how it can be turned into a lesson.

March 22

Take the greatest news you ever received and write about a character receiving that same news. Except, have all the characters in the scene react as though it is the worst news to receive.

We have covered the various points of view, both from a writing stand point and from an actual “how to see the world” stand point.

We also covered correlation between writer and reader. Now, we can combine the two.

What is great for you may not be great for everyone. For example, if you have tried for years to get pregnant and finally find out you are with child, that may be the greatest news you could ever receive.

However, for a young woman who wasn’t planning for a child, having no one to turn to, or having to alter her entire life such as dropping out of school, having to get a second or third job, etc. it may not be the best news.

Part of being a great writer (as well as a decent human) is to understand that everyone sees things a different way. Even when presented with the exact same facts, two persons will have differing view points.

This will include your characters. Nothing causes more strife and conflict than a disagreement. If you think about the saying “there are three sides to every story, your side, their side and the truth,” then you can understand how easy it can be to create conflict.

Conflict in a novel is a great thing. It gives the reader someone to side with, and therefore someone to side against. You can draw the reader in by making them a part of your story on an emotional or mental level.

Internal Debates are Great Things

Using today’s prompt is a great exercise in being able to see both sides of the coin, and then being able to uncover the third side, the truth.

Court Room Drama
Your book is the courthouse and your written arguments need to favor both sides equally.

Whatever your great news is, when you write about it being bad news it will be difficult. But if you can come up with a scenario where it is a horrible thing, you can then write from that side of the coin.

As you practice this internal debate-style of writing, you can learn to harness it’s power. Take John Grisham for example. He writes amazing trials and has courtroom scenes that are so realistic its like being on the jury.

While it is true that he is an attorney, his legal thrillers must take on both sides of the case. He has to write from the prosecutors side and defend the client from the defense side. But you know as well as I do that as he is writing, he already knows if the client is innocent or guilty.

Knowing the truth and still being able to defend or prosecute in such a believable manner takes a great deal of skill.

You can develop this skill and write more believable debates, arguments and situations if you simply learn to see things from both sides.

So practice that today. Turn your great news into bad news. Then post your scene in the comment section below so we can all share in your new found talent.

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