Monday, February 25, 2008

A Completed Outline

At first, I didn't do a complete outline of my current work in progress (WIP), but I read Blake Snyder's Save the Cat! on Friday and I was anxious to see how well my WIP would fit within his structure. By the time I was done, I had the whole thing outlined and I even came up with forty scenes. I suspect that I will be making some changes along the way, but it is a good starting point. I like the outline, but some of what I wrote may not fit.

My WIP is a Dude With a Problem story. The problem is that the man's wife left him and the kids for someone else. One of the things I noticed after reading Save the Cat! was that I have a stranger feeding my protagonist information rather than having him go out and find it. I had noticed that before, but I justified it by saying that it was the only way the protagonist could get the information. That may be true, but if I can find a way around that then I will.

Snyder suggests giving the theme of the story early on. I can’t help but wonder if stating the theme might be more of a subliminal message than anything else. Showing the problem is much more important. Looking back at movies, and some books, I can see where the writer stated the theme, but I really don’t think I would notice it if I wasn’t looking for it. Still, if it gets the reader thinking along those lines then it is a good thing.

The basic theme for this WIP has to do with whether or not truly unconditional love is possible. It is one thing to love a woman when she is around, but what about when she has turned her back on the man and wants nothing to do with him.

One of the big problems I am having with this WIP is that it involves the woman getting involved in some things that I don’t understand why anyone would choose to become involved in and yet people do so everyday. The simple answer is that sin is pleasurable for a season.