Randy Ingermanson writes an advanced fiction writing e-magazine that is invaluable, as are his many books on writing. Today, I want to share some of Ingermanson’s words that should inspire us all about what we are doing: Writing Stories.
Characters and Crucibles
Technically, stories need a character, and a crucible. A character is a person who wants something desperately—to have something, be something, or do something. That “something” is the story’s goal. The crucible is the reason your character can’t have what she wants. That’s where the struggle, the conflict, the suspense, the romance comes from as your character tries to break out of her crucible. This all and much more comes from Randy’s book How to Write a Dynamite Scene Using the Snowflake Method. It’s a precious and quick read and I highly recommend it.
But the focus of this writer’s tip is to recognize that what we do is important, why stories matter.
This is what Ingermanson writes:
Story teaches the tribe how to survive.
Story teaches the tribe how to thrive.
Story has been doing that for many thousand years.
Every human alive desperately needs Story.
Every human alive desperately wants Story.
Story is not a luxury item.
Story is not optional.
Story keeps the tribe alive.
Story is a powerful emotional experience
Story is a safe way to face danger.
Story teaches you how to face your fears, how to persist, how to hope when there is no hope.
When you’ve got nothing else, Story will get you through.
Story teaches you how to live.
People Need YOUR Stories!
We should try to improve our craft so we are better able to serve our readers, and better able to help our tribe survive, thrive and stay alive.
When we wonder why we sit behind a desk and fight the keyboard day after day, we need to know within our hearts that it matters. We may or may not reach the heights we have set for ourselves. But the words we put on paper matter. We need stories. People need YOUR stories.