Writing Echoes

Delijah's Writing Blog

“Secrets” & Frustration

There is an inherent problem with being a character-based writer – your action spree skills suck, big time. Okay, maybe only my action spree skills suck, but I have been noticed lately – as I work on Secrets, which should be a spy(ish) thriller that a lot of my action happens within my characters’ heads, which is great when building up tension but… not so great when you try to write a chase.

Stakeouts? Easy-peasy. Running after the bad guy? Boooooring.

It is a bit on the frustrating side, actually, because a few times now I have tried to work up fast-paced stories – Secrets is the latest one but Dangerous Men and Timeless fall in this category too, and the action does not feel… action-y if you allow me the made-up word. It feels dragged by the characters… well, the characters thinking and reflecting and… feeling, maybe?

This scheme I feel comfortable in slides in the story whenever I am not on the look-out and tension builds up… but it is not the right kind of tension. It is not ‘omg the bad guy is going to discover him/her any second now and kill him/her’ kind of tension. It feels more like ‘oh shit, what if his/her secret is out? What happens when the people close to him/her find out?’

This yields to interesting discovering about the characters, which I enjoy, but… but.

But sometimes it is not what I am aiming for, and that makes me feel frustrated. After all, I am well-aware of the ‘theory’, but I just keep drifting towards the same writing style all the time. I wonder whether this is good or bad…

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2 responses to ““Secrets” & Frustration

  1. T. Gene Davis October 30, 2014 at 15:13

    I’ve known writers that were great with action sequences, but their character development was awful. So, I guess both types of authors have trouble conquering the other style of writing.

    • Sakaki Delijah October 30, 2014 at 15:17

      No doubt about that. But today I’m just a hair-width away from grabbing my computer screen, shake it and yell “WHY WON’T YOU SHOOT AND KILL SOMEONE?!?!” at my sniper main character…..
      And considering how thin my apartment walls are, that might get me arrested….