Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Brainstorming for Conflict and Stakes

What are you reading now?  Dark Kiss (Michelle Rowen)
Annnd . . . what do I think so far? NEW RELEASE FOR ANGEL-DEMON FANS   :)
          Maybe if Samantha’s life weren’t so ordinary, or maybe if she were used to guys wanting to kiss her, or maybe if she . . . never mind because her life is what it is and she did it. She kissed utterly gorgeous Stephen. On a whim. Not a date. Not even a dance first. She thought it’d be great or at least good or maybe be the start of something. But he just kissed her and left.
          Now she’s changed. There’s a hunger she can’t stop, and if she gives in to feeding it what she really wants—well, there’s just no way she’s going to do that.
           Samantha meets Bishop and ends out helping him. She doesn’t know if she can do enough, or if he can, to save herself and her friends. Her life is anything but ordinary now.
            This is the first in a series—I hope—because I want to know more about Samantha’s friend, Carly. I want to know about the relationship between Bishop (angel) and Kraven (demon), and why heaven and hell are working together on this one. It’s good when you read a book and feel like you had a lot of your questions answered yet like there are still more to explore too. So yeah, I’ll pick up the next one.
Brainstorming for Conflict and Stakes
(This is a long blog post today--just copy and paste it into a doc that you can use later when you're brainstorming ideas for scenes.)

What are Possible Sources of Conflict?

·   Friendship
·    Work
·   Priorities
·   School (aggression and defense)
·     Loyalty
·    Someone limiting our potential
·     Trust
·     Order of the world changes (personal world or world-world)
·     Living arrangements
·      Grown up issues v. kid issues
·      Internal conflict
·      Incompatible values
·      Attempts at control, power struggle, dominance and dependence
·      Economic (scarce resources)
·      Different belief systems, religion and ideology
·      Contrasting laws
·      Power to choose or influence
·      Competition
·      Role definitions
·      Different relationship needs
·      Personality conflict (motives and styles for dealing with people)
·      Nature

How to Escalate Conflict:
·      Increasingly vocal
·      Suspicion
·      Emotional appeals
·      Poor communication
·      Make it a personal attack
·      Harm or threat to a family member, significant other or friend
·      Environmental forces
·      Involve more groups or members
·      Oversimplification or distortions
·      Scapegoating
·      Prejudices
·      Propaganda
·      New laws
·      Rewards, punishments, deception, evasion, emotional blackmail
·      Selective perspective and spinning the perspectives
·      Take precautionary steps
·      Fear tactics/ defensiveness
·      Threats and counter-threats
·      Hostility and injury
·      Chaos
·      War

How can we Raise the Stakes (what can be gained or lost) in a Scene?
·      Safety (emotional or physical)
·      Opportunity
·      Basic needs (housing, food, transportation)
·      Economic threats
·      Internal (emotional, memories, guilt, doubt)
·      Abduction
·      Past overshadowing the present
·      Attempted murder
·      Illness or health concerns
·      Medical care
·      Involvement of loved ones and pets
·      Earth (disaster, pollution, destruction, need new one)
·      Wants v. reality
·      Life/death
·      Difference of opinions
·      Accidents
·      Misunderstandings
·      Physical blocks
·      Public stakes (wider community)

    Leave a comment with more ideas we can include in this list.


Leslie Pugh said...

That is a really great list of ideas. Wish I had more to add but my brain is about ready for bed now so I've got nothing. But thank you very much! This will come in very handy I'm sure.

kbrebes said...

Nice list, Canda!

Renae W. Mackley said...

You're right. The can go on and on. I'm just gonna 'take' on this one and not 'give'. Your list is a great starting point. Thanks.

Donna K. Weaver said...

This is a great list, Canda. I AM going to copy and past it.

Jennifer K Clark said...

Thanks for posting this list. It gets your mind working in new directions and opens the door to possibilities that can be added into each scene.

Cathy said...

Under sources of conflict you could add health issues. To escalate the conflict I would suggest the ever popular zombie apocalypse. And then my boys would probably raise the stakes with a rabid weasel infestation.

Great info. Canda, Despite my silly suggestions.