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  1. #21

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    Tambra,


    >>
    Boy, I can sure relate to the comments here from my classmates. I am a pantster, and I also get stuck half way through. But, as I learned in the last work shop given by Cynnara, it’s better to just write and not try to reach a specific length – in other words, shorter works are fine too – just get the story out.
    >>
    So, I’ve been working on a smaller submission of 20k and am about 16k into it. Now comes the hard part, where I sit and mull over whether the ending I originally planned is going to be good enough, or if I should start all over!
    >>
    Gack!
    >>
    Here’s what I have so far:
    >>
    Female gets dumped by boyfriend. Decides she’s going to use men for sex and avoid relationships from now on.
    >>
    Male gets dumped by wife. Decides he’s going to avoid relationships from now on.
    >>
    F/M meet.
    M asks her out. Takes her to his house, makes her dinner, tries to be a gentleman.
    F comes onto him, and gets rebuffed. She’s angry she can’t take control of the situation.
    M drives her home at her request.
    >>
    F has a few other unsatisfactory sexual encounters with other men.
    After tiring of that routine, decides she was too harsh on M and sets upon a plan.
    F sneaks into M’s house, gets set up to cook him dinner wearing sexy negligee.
    M comes come with another F in tow.
    F hides in the closet in the bed room while M and other F have a rollicking good time.**
    In the morning, M opens closet door to find F asleep, freaks out.
    F runs off.
    M feels guilty.
    >>
    ------ the story ends with them having sex for the first time on Superbowl Sunday.
    >>
    But in the meantime, what happens?
    >>
    My original plan was for F to get caught in a dangerous situation and run away, only to find M nearby ready and willing to assist her.
    >>
    But then I got to thinking, why not blow something up or how about a car crash? That’s always good, right?
    >>
    Or… how about he sends her flowers, she tosses them back in his face, only to feel guilty later when X happens, and change her mind.
    >>
    >>
    >>
    **I always seem to come up with these quirky scenarios. Maybe it’s too much One Life to Live?
    >>
    Sigh….
    >>
    >>
    Any thoughts on the best way to get the M/F to the floor in front of the TV while the Superbowl is on?
    >>
    What plot process am I missing here?
    >>
    Or do I just choke?
    >>
    Thanks,
    >>
    Yakkity
    >>
    >>
  2. Tambra's Avatar
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    #22

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    Okay, remember this is only my opinion. Take what you can use and toss the rest.

    You say both the hero and the heroine get dumped on and want to avoid relationships from now on. The hero doesn't act like that and neither does the heroine.

    What attracts them to each other that they shove their experiences behind? If you have this great! If you don't not a biggie, because you weave it in, don't start the story over.

    In a romance the hero and heroine have to provide what the other is missing/needs in a relationship. Ex. Hero needs a heroine who is strong but equates strong in a negative way. By her actions and speech he begins to see that maybe he was wrong in his assessment.

    When you plot think about what will make the stakes higher for one or both of the characters either physically or emotionally. What is the worst thing that can happen at that time and if it happens what is revealed and how does it affect the Hero/heroine?

    The first idea that comes to mind in getting the hero and heroine together on the floor during the superbowl:
    She's wearing the jersey of his favorite team with nothing underneath it or wearing a sexy thong as she brings in some nice things to nibble on. She could say: "You can record the first half of the game because we've got our own Superbowl beginning right now. You score, baby."

    I admit, it's a bit cornball but it gives you something play with.

    The crisis or dark moment is when the character is at his/her lowest. and probably faced with a difficult choice to make. The character can take the easy way out OR the difficult way to resolution. A Heroic character will always take the hard way, risk everything, including the love of the hero/heroine because it's the right thing to do.
    A plan of action is decided on by the character and the obstacles are more harder in the last portion of the book.

    This comes from Carolyn Greene's Prescription for Plotting:
    What has the hero and heroine sacrificed for their love?
    If the heroine has achieved her external goal, her hard earned victory. In romance, the sacrifice might involve doing what is best for HIM- even it if means depriving herself of his love.

    By taking the hard path, it shows the character has changed from the beginning of the book and when the Resolution/Climax of the main conflict occurs they have what it takes to be worthy of their happily-ever-after at the end of the story.

    By risking all, (self, her own goal, and/or the hero's love), the heroine ultimately gets all, including fulfillment of her inner need. And the story question raised in the first part of the book is finally answered.

    Does this help?

    Hugs,
    Tambra
    Tambra Nicole Kendall
    Sensual. Magical. Unforgettable Romance.
    www.daughtersofavalonpublishing.com
    tambrakendall@att.net
  3. Tambra's Avatar
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    #23

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    Hi Rusty,

    I write query letters but have no idea how good they are.
    It's like a business letter introducing you and your work to the editor/publisher.

    I think the hardest part is knowing how to condense the story so you have all the elements to catch their attention.

    I mentioned earlier not to toss anything out. Here's an example of why. I started a story in 2004/2005. My publisher put out the call for wolf shifter stories.
    I pulled that story out and used portions of it while adding new elements to it. It wasn't all bad and I'm happy with the story.
    It's being published under my other writing pen name, Keelia Greer.
    A Cursed Heart from Red Rose Publishing.

    You can read an excerpt if you hop over to the Reader's Retreat where some ladies in the Daughters of Circe group I'm in is posting most of the month.
    Of course, I have some hot excerpts in there as well.

    See, keep yer stuff! You never know when you'll be able to use it.

    Hugs,
    Tambra
    Tambra Nicole Kendall
    Sensual. Magical. Unforgettable Romance.
    www.daughtersofavalonpublishing.com
    tambrakendall@att.net
  4. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tambra View Post
    You say both the hero and the heroine get dumped on and want to avoid relationships from now on. The hero doesn't act like that and neither does the heroine.

    What attracts them to each other that they shove their experiences behind?

    In a romance the hero and heroine have to provide what the other is missing/needs in a relationship.

    When you plot think about what will make the stakes higher for one or both of the characters either physically or emotionally. What is the worst thing that can happen at that time and if it happens what is revealed and how does it affect the Hero/heroine?


    The crisis or dark moment is when the character is at his/her lowest. and probably faced with a difficult choice to make. The character can take the easy way out OR the difficult way to resolution.

    This comes from Carolyn Greene's Prescription for Plotting:
    What has the hero and heroine sacrificed for their love?
    If the heroine has achieved her external goal, her hard earned victory. In romance, the sacrifice might involve doing what is best for HIM- even it if means depriving herself of his love.


    Hi Tambra,

    Boy, my pantster lifestyle just leaves so many plot holes they are scattered like pot holes in a Seattle street all around me. Oh well!

    Yes, the M and F characters both get dumped. She deals with it by only dating married older men she can control and he deals with it with one-night-stands kind of dating.

    But when they meet, they are attracted to each other. You are right, I should define what attracts them to each other. So far all I have is that they are physically attracted, and the M somehow recognizes in the F a person similar to himself. The F knows the M sees right through her. They have a couple of false start dates, but can't seem to get their act together - she pushes too hard for sex while he's trying to be Mr. nice guy and develop the relationship.

    Do they both provide something the other one needs? I'm not sure. I better go back and look at that aspect closer. F certainly needs a better guy - the guys she's hooking up with are getting skankier all the time. But what does the M need besides stability and an end to his wandering? I don't know.

    Can the crisis or dark moment be when they both decide to walk away and it all seems over?

    Or would her putting herself in a dangerous position be the dark moment?

    Thanks,

    Yakkity

    It's hard to digest I know. It seems I write more internal conflicts than external ones. In this case, F's goal is A but what's good for her is really B (the M) and that is the major conflict in the story. So, we follow her mistakes as he's trying to corral her into his goal of a relationship with her.



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    #25

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    Hi Yakkity,
    Just picking up on what you said here:
    'But when they meet, they are attracted to each other. You are right, I should define what attracts them to each other. So far all I have is that they are physically attracted, and the M somehow recognizes in the F a person similar to himself.'

    What if it isn't something similar to himself but something opposite to himself that he sees in her, something that he admires, something that could complete him because he hasn't been able to achieve that quality in himself.e.g. he might have difficulty being the life of the party but admires her vital energy at first but then that very energy (fake or otherwise) becomes a stumbling block as their relationship starts to develop. it could lead to misunderstandings or wrong interpretation or jealousy.
    She might admire what she sees as his quiet confidence, one who doesn't have the need to be on display, someone who is really cool, self assured Then this quality might also become a temporary stumbling block too, until you have something explosively dynamic happen that forces them to show their true selves to each other and they really do complete each other.
    That's just working on the premise that opposites attract.

    Thanks for letting us into your story.
    Rusty
  6. Tambra's Avatar
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    #26

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    Hi Yakkity,

    Thanks for posting about your story. Keep working with it. You've got something here, you just need to fine tune it a bit more. No writer gets it perfect the first, second etc., time. All of us have to make adjustments to our stories.

    Does the hero recognize something in her similar to himself because it's something familiar, comfortable? Or is it something more...something he doesn't want to face right now.

    A character can think they want something at the beginning but learn what they really needed was something else.

    In romance the hero and the heroine must give what the other needs to make it work. Maybe the heroine thought she needed a rich guy but finds out that the hero has a good job with great possibilities. But he loves her throughout all the problems they've encountered and can provide the secure environment she craved as a child. Can you see what mean by this?

    Look at your character's backgrounds and their GMC's. Goal, motivation and conflict. The characters need both internal and external needs that should be fulfilled.

    Is this helping?

    Crisis or dark moment-yes they both can but it doesn't have to be. The dark moment doesn't have to involved danger. It can be that the hero/heroine has had enough. They can't take anymore. He/she put his/her heart on the line but this time they knew it was true love which makes everything different than any previous relationships.

    Does this help?

    Hugs,
    Tambra
    Tambra Nicole Kendall
    Sensual. Magical. Unforgettable Romance.
    www.daughtersofavalonpublishing.com
    tambrakendall@att.net
  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tambra View Post
    Hi Yakkity,

    Crisis or dark moment-yes they both can but it doesn't have to be. The dark moment doesn't have to involved danger. It can be that the hero/heroine has had enough. They can't take anymore.

    Oh, this is like the dark moment in each of Sherrilyn Kenyon's books where the hero learns he was set up by the female and he wonders if he can trust her. Or, he turns away believing that he can't have the relationship because she's some goddess and he'd just a dark hunter or human.

    Like that?
  8. Tambra's Avatar
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    #28

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    OMG, I love Sherrilyn Kenyon. Perfect example.
    Yeah. He's a Dark-Hunter in service to Artemis and although he's admitted he loves this woman he can't have her due to his duty and oath.

    Hugs,
    Tambra
    Tambra Nicole Kendall
    Sensual. Magical. Unforgettable Romance.
    www.daughtersofavalonpublishing.com
    tambrakendall@att.net
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