Southeast Location

I took a few days away from working on my series that was inspired from my jokes, and after yesterday’s blog post on story styles, I felt inspired to revisit the concept with more thoughts.  Let me also add that I will have to do some research, so we’ve gone into a new stage.

As per past posts the story revolves around a man who has global influence, and is trying to work with his dysfunctional family.  My initial thoughts is he was trying to find his voice. That still holds true, but I think he has a new role he’s trying to please a lot of people while remaining true to himself.

I think the MC/hero/protagonist starts and LLC, and it grows like wildfire. His mom is in charge of the business as she manages him, the finances, and the demands.  She has become the an influential person who is the closest to her son.

Location was another aspect I worked on.  The story takes place in Charleston, SC (or outside the city). This is personal, as I am from the south, and I know this region well.  The main setting is the business which is set in a restored southern mansion.

Needless to say I need to brush up on businesses, and southern mansions, because I’d like for this to be a strong aspect of the series.   This also made me think of ideas for the series.

Below are some notes I made as thought this out:

  • Getting sued.  I know it’s an LLC, BUT I imagine people want access to the MC unfiltered.
  • The MC has a unintentional monopoly no on can match, and this sets some people’s shorts on fire.
  • People want favors at the MC’s expense.
  • People want Mom’s favor and try to bribe or blackmail her,
  • MC has to learn when to say “no,” and not being a people pleaser when the business has policies he and his mom are ironing out.
  • Mom and MC are having issues over policies.  Some she insists upon, others he insists upon.

Tomorrow I may post something I found to be a problem: I want to create some other relatives that have positive influence on the MC.  I’m thinking an aunt (Mom’s sis) and a Uncle (Dad’s brother) who may or may not work for him.

As always, happy creative endeavors.

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Softening the Villain

I write this with two particular villains in mind who I thought were the most interesting characters in their respective films. I’m speaking of Maleficent in Sleeping Beauty, and Darth Vader in Star Wars (original trilogy). Both characters held a lot of mystery and a particular brand of evil that was interesting to watch unfold.

What I did notice is when both characters became the central character of their own films, their stories and characters changed, and in many ways we saw they were not evil, but misunderstood, and that has in effect, cut off their true potency.

When I first talked about both characters, I suggested they were more like tragic heroes with a fatal flaw. They had desire, motive, and they made things happen.  Both Maleficent and Darth Vader paid the ultimate price for their actions. Only one of them remained relentlessly evil, while the other had a change of heart.

That said, when looking at the film, Maleficent, we see that Maleficent is the victim, and it is her trust that is betrayed. This betrayal turned her into a spiteful person, who acts out of malice and revenge.

This is a completely different character from the original, who was pure evil, didn’t give a damn how you felt, she was going to do as she pleased.  Granted that would make for a dark live action film (kids may be scared of her), but let’s be honest, she was the mistress of all evil. That’s a huge part of her appeal.

In the prequels of Star Wars, we get to see Darth Vader as Anakin Skywalker. It could be argued that it was only after Obi-Wan defeated Anakin, and left him to die in Revenge of the Sith is when he really turned evil.

Up until that point, Anakin was cocky, murderous, and extremely petulant. After he was defeated, humiliated, and left to burn alive is where he suffered, got angry, and realized the totality of his actions–which had been vile, and sadly this did not make him regret who he became. I would dare say that’s when the story starts.

Maleficent’s origin film allows for her to be re-branded as a dark heroine, while Darth Vader’s origin attempts to depict his tragic fall from hero to evil.  For the purpose of the Maleficent film, the character’s evil roots were purged in favor of a more kid-appealing villain, while the Star Wars prequels took a route to fill in gaps.

Both de-mystified their strongest characters with mixed results.

More Character Development

Hurricane Irma really put some worry in the past few days, and it also gave me time to contemplate where I’m going at with my idea.  I thought a lot about the genre (science-fiction) and how this impacted the world I created.  I thought of some antagonists for the hero outside of his family and friends.

As always, I want to keep them down to two sentences, and haven’t named them.  I’m keeping them to four at the moment, as it will be easy to manage in my head, and on paper.  for abbreviation they are A 1- 4

A #1 is a spiritual leader who is looking to get Mom in her flock and, thus have influence over Mom and second son.  Cannot strike the ideal balance between controlling ways and spiritual guidance.

A #2: Is a businessman who loves to win, dominate, and destroy any competition that dares reveal itself to him. Cannot rest while Second Son holds more power, respect, and influence than him and he has no way to unseat the Second Son.

A #3 is a politician who has a city that is suffering in resources, and has made the decision to do whatever it takes to have what his city needs to survive.

A #4: Is a resourceful journalist who wants to know everything for her stories on powerful people. She’s know for her unflinching focus on the truth, decisive and candid questions, and her tenacity.

My goal is to see how these characters play out in the series.  I hope to have more thoughts on them, as I flesh them out over time. Also I realize them being antagonists doesn’t mean they are 100% evil. They have conflict with the MC.

Happy creative endeavors.

 

 

The Final Four

In another chapter of my character building, we come to the final four.

Not really the final characters for my story, but I wanted to create more characters while paying a pun-ish reference to BSG. Yes, I realize it was a “final five,” but if you add the MC you have five.

The MC (main character) is the second son for those who have been following my progress through creating the story.  I also want to keep the character descriptions down to two sentences or less.

Ex-Girlfriend: She is ironically free-spirited, and unintentionally cruel, but always in the second son’s orbit. She discovers she wants to around him more for what he can do, less than she wants to be with him.

Ex-Friend: Typically goes after what he desires no matter the obstacle. Lost the MC as a friend when he started sleeping with the MC’s now ex-gf.

Friend 1: Hard worker, and very passionate about career and goals. She is good friends with the MC, and values loyalty and trues among peers.

Friend 2:  Is burnt out from life and people, thus becoming more and more cynical. Keeps making mistakes that have a ripple effect, and needs help he’s not open to.

 

Tigress in a Business Suit

 

That’s how I describe my character from a simple idea in yesterday’s post.  She came from a joke I made about a mom who sabotages her son. It was a raw idea that marinated overnight.

I figured mom is angry at her husband- who abandoned her after she had their second child, and this son looks exactly like him.  She took out her frustrations on him– Inadvertently or not.

Later in life she thinks she loses him, and then feels guilty that she truly messed up his life, and hers. If she got a second chance, she would be a better person and a mother. She gets her chance, and she does as promised.

I like this character more and more. She fits nicely into a story I wrote down and created a mom, but had no clue who she was and what she wanted/needed.  She’s only one character, so I have a lot of work to do, For the record there are two siblings, and the dad in the story.  Perhaps they will become clearer to me.

That, and I need more off hand jokes to marinate on.  LOL

As always, happy creative endeavors.

So Not the Drama

A couple of days ago, I posted about how the character’s personal issue/problem is the real motive/action of the story, not an event drive tale, and I wish to elaborate.

I used to think the MC, or hero needed to react to an event that really had nothing to do with him or her. For example, I thought the hero had to go into a pre-made situation that didn’t involve him/her in any way.

If it were an adventure story, he/she was traveling just to travel. If it were a love story, the two would simply meet and hook up. This could go on, but the outstanding point is the MC’s in my stories had not connection to anything.

What I eventually learned was that what drives a story is the MC’s emotions and their reaction to something personal. A good thing (heart’s desire) which could be a flaw, or too much of a good thing. The MC could also have a fear that they’d have to confront.

For example, the adventure story MC could love to travel, however, his/her travel plans are often interrupted by other people in need. Maybe he’s affected by a travel ban. Perhaps his/her fear of small boats and planes is preventing him from going to a remote location.

The more personal the story, the mileage I can get out of it, or that’s the plan, and perhaps why some of my plotting of late has been rather frustrating.

That TV spec pilot I was writing? Not personal in the least, simply event driven with a theme. The novel? Highly event driven with a theme, but I’m a do better. Much better.

Happy creative endeavors.

The Lusty Fiend

today was a little change of pace in regards to writing. Decided to research a little more into formatting, and improving the protagonist, and characters in general. With most stories, it’s all about bout the protagonist, and their desires, and what gets in their way. I hear this in every book, video, or article on screen and script writing.  In wiring, in general, if a writer has an idea of what your main character (AKA protagonist), you’re on the right path.  

So, now that I can digest what I wrote, I wonder do I know what my character desires? This harkens me back to knowing what a MC’s hearts desire, or their greatest fear. Whatever I think it is the desire will be denied, and the hero will ultimately confront his fears. It all seems simple now, but I remember when I first heard it, the words didn’t sink in.  

So I had this idea: think of it as a sex story. Usually the sex desire is clear in my head–story wise.  

Character X wants sex from Character Z, whom he’s had a crush on since high school. Now that he’s a millionaire, he thinks that’ll sway her to his bed.  The obstacle: Character Z doesn’t even know X is alive, let alone finds him attractive.  Furthermore she’s into waiting for months before even thinking of sex, and maintains a strong Christian background and appearance. So character X has got to get Z to notice him, and make her fall in love, and want to sleep with him.  Damn those are tough obstacles.  Why is X putting himself through this? 

Now I have to know what happens.  Clearly his ego is high, but he still can’t get the girl with his bling.  Does he just want a one night stand, or a start of a relationship? It needs more work, and sex was not as simple as I thought for a story. LOL

I will say this, I’m intrigued, would develop this, and before scripting, I’d figure out the answers to the questions I raised. There I’d find the theme, and have a viable screenplay.

That’s enough. Glad I wrote, glad I blogged, and happy to have a new idea to contemplate.  

As always, happy creative endeavors.