April 28, 2004

bang bang

Last night the In-Town met. I read a chunk of chapter 6 that I've been re-writing and re-writing. I have rewritten it so much in such a short amount of time that I can not get any sort of feel for how well it is working. The things I felt uncertain about were not brought up by anyone, so either I HAVE it working now OR they felt it was too troubled to be fixed. *grin*

And we talked about violence and how much I seem to heart writing about violence. I said some sort of thing about why, about how what happens after violence always interests me as a writer, especially when ordinary people do violent things. I am not terribly interested in violent people doing violent things. Professional killers shoot people. And then in the aftermath of that they go shoot more people or perhaps get paid. That's not what interests me, unless the professional killers are John Cusack.

I also like writing the violent scenes themselves. I like plunking down a whole bunch of folks in the middle of a whirlwind of random destruction, or more likely, something deliberate, something being perpetrated by someone innocent of the idea that there is cause and effect and events have consequences, or someone who knows and who loses control anyway. And then in the middle of the chaos, I watch and I see what these people will do. Because really, in extremis, that's when characters act the most like themselves, and sometimes that's what it takes for me to see what is at the core of them.

You never know a character so well as the moment after you light them on fire. <--truism.

Posted by joshilyn at April 28, 2004 5:45 AM