This is, you understand, probably an improvement over being overwhelmed, befuddled, or whiney—all characteristics of mine you’ve been witness to.
I’m judging an RWA chapter contest. It’s not hard—the scoresheet for the contest is comprehensive and intended to be helpful to the writer. It’s not one of those that makes you think, Geeze, really? because it’s totally unconnected to the entries. I am, to tell the truth, enjoying the judging. I like the categories I have and most of the entries I’ve had have been good. One of them was so good I gave what may have been an unprecedented perfect score. (I am way jealous of this writer, whoever she may be, by the way, but jealousy is fodder for another blog, so just ignore this little segue.)
What has me bewildered is that while I have seen lots of well-written sexual tension, and lots of well-written conflict, and...okay, yeah, also some info-dumps and some dreck, I haven’t really seen much in the way of emotion.
No, that’s wrong. There is emotion. There’s anger. And it’s over things that happened long ago—I mean, really, how long can you stay that mad? He just saved your life and you’re still ticked off and waxing all kinds of obnoxiously rude because he hurt your feelings in high school? Grow up!
Admittedly, conflict is hard for me—I’ve never been convinced it’s necessary J--but when it’s conflict that makes me roll my eyes or stop reading, maybe it’s not all me. Maybe the writers aren’t working hard enough to establish both believable emotion and relatable conflict.
Okay, now that I’ve once again held forth on emotion—are you surprised, D’Ann Lindun?—what do you think? Do you think holding onto fierce righteous anger for years and years is enough emotion or viable conflict?
Thanks for coming by. Have a great week!