Tag Archives: conflict

Tension and Conflict. What’s the Difference?

KRISTINA STANLEY

Tension and conflict will keep your reader engaged in every scene. Knowing the difference and when to use each will drive your story forward.

Tension

Tension is the threat of something bad happening. This creates suspense.

Tension can be subtle or in-your-face.

Subtle Tension: Imagine one character is hiding a secret that could destroy his life and another character is about to accidentally spill the secret. The reader will feel the tension if you’ve set up the scene so that the reader knows the second character can’t keep a secret.

In-your-face Tension: A woman is thrown off a boat at sea. The tension comes if the reader cares about the character and wants her to survive. Or the tension could be she’s an evil woman who is about to destroy the world, and the reader doesn’t want her to survive.


Conflict

Conflict is the fight that is actually happening. A…

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Creating Tension in Fiction and Memoir

A Writer's Path

by Michael Mohr

One of the toughest things to do in fiction or creative nonfiction writing, in my professional opinion, is to create strong, believable tension. Without tension—between the protagonist and a villain, the protagonist and him/herself, the protagonist and the environment, etc—you really don’t have much of a story. And it’s unlikely readers will want to follow you far through the jungle of your narrative.

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An Introduction to Arcs: Laying the Foundations for the Rocky Road of Writing

Writers Anon - Taunton's Writing Group

A Story Arc is a way of feeling how your story develops throughout the work; where a character’s conflicts and challenges lie and where they may succeed and fail in meeting them.

People think in different ways about story arcs but it can be useful to have a consistent set of tools to draw on. Some people like to draw their story out as graphs but I sometimes like to think about parts of the arc as different ways of doing something. An example might be taking a walk along a quiet pavement, strolling through pleasant meadows, coasting through rolling hills, soaring through wild mountains and plunging into deep valleys. Oh and there’s the occasional lunatic with a sledgehammer thrown in for good measure.

Now that we’ve got those aids which we can sense, let’s use them:

Let’s imagine we’re writing a story and so we’re going to take a…

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7 Potential Conflicts for Your Story

The Musings of a Creative Writer

We all know that there are the big four conflicts in storytelling:

Man vs Man

Man vs Self

Man vs Nature

Man vs Society

These conflicts are woven into the each layer of storytelling. I mean, what would a story be without conflict? Storytelling now uses these devices to find the right problems for their stories. There are also 3 other types that have become somewhat popular:

Man vs Fate/God

Man vs Supernatural

Man vs Technology

These seven conflicts fall under one of two major categories. internal and external. These two can help you portray your character’s wants and needs. They can also help you figure out if one of your character’s needs conflict with another’s. The other’s are just    My question to you is: how do you figure out what conflict is best for your story? Let’s say you have two options. Your character can either fight a societal…

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Why I Fall In Love With a Manuscript: Conflict

William Reid

Read other writing advice blogs on my writing page!

Why I Fall In Love With a Manuscript 4: Conflict 

You have conflict. Lots and lots of conflict.

unnamed (3)Conflict is drama. If your story has conflict, it adds the spice that any love affair needs.

Stories don’t have to start with fist fights or space battles. Conflict can be as big as finding love in a civil war or as small as choosing the right ring to propose with. It can be as fast as a car crash or as slow as the new valet showing up with a limp.

But those are really situations, not conflict. The most important element of conflict is that it involves characters. Even in a pitched space battle, I care about R2-D2 and C-3PO. Conflict is personal, and conflict involves characters I care about. If you lose the characters I root for, the conflict loses its power…

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If you think your memoir doesn’t need a plot, you’re making a big mistake.

Terena Scott

Memoir is a story about someone’s life, right? Sure, if you want it to be boring.

A good memoir is not just a series of events shared chronologically. It is a tale with heroes, villains, conflict, subtext, and a great plot to keep the pages turning. Writing events down chronologically might be fine for a history book or genealogy, but if you want to engage your readers, you need to think about action. One event in a life has a direct impact on the next event. Everything you do effects the people around you and how your life develops.

A scene is action. Plot is a series of actions. When you outline your memoir, think about the actions that shaped your life and made you who you are.

Perhaps you were born in Cleveland, then you moved to LA when you were 10. Those are facts, and you might want…

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