We spent most of the afternoon dealing with writing the death scene for a major and much loved character in ‘Rocketboy’, and then discussing how best we can inflict huge amount of angst, grief and pain on our hero. We literally spent hours structuring these deep injuries with the precision of a surgeon. The upshot? Great pages but a terrible mood.
At each point we kept checking in – is this too much? Or should we turn the screws even more? I was always in favour of turning the screws. Not because I am a sadist to my characters, but because I know two things to be true.
- We tend to fall in love with our characters and therefore protect them from pain, sometimes even subconsciously.
- The greater the pain we inflict, the more audiences will connect with the characters (so long as it’s authentic pain AND appropriate to the tone, genre etc.)
So, act three turning point is a terrible tragedy in ‘Rocketboy’, which then spins us into the dark night of the soul, before the final battle and resurrection. I simply CANNOT wait to unleash this new draft and get feedback.
Onwards and upwards!