Television for me is a quick way to see story techniques. So here's one I fell across recently.
Do you watch Bones? The hero, Seeley Booth, is an FBI agent and tough as nails, but he also understands people really well and connects emotionally.
Well, anyway, the point is your hero is supposed to have a "problem" and Seeley's is that he has a gambling addiction. But in the nine seasons I've been watching, Seeley is way too cool and manly to fall prey to it.
Except this last season, we saw him lose to that addiction. He fell, and he fell hard. I hated seeing Seeley brought to his knees by a stupid addiction. I mean really hated it, how he lied and how he treated his family, very unSeeley.
But here's the thing--that one thing made the addiction real.
For the first time in nine seasons, I believed he had a gambling addiction. Which leads to the statement--
ONLY STRUGGLING WITH IT MAKES IT REAL.
For whatever IT is. So if your beta readers or crit partners are saying something's not real enough, that might mean your point-of-view character never struggles with it.
Published since 2009, over the years I've accumulated various items of writing
wisdom. The Third Tuesday Writing Tidbit showcases these items in no particular
order. Click here to see all 3T Tidbits.