Monday, April 16, 2012

The Result of Not Having A Significant Topic

It's baseball season and this is the one time I actually do turn into the radio and listen in on the sport's gossip. I have to say, however, I am not one of those "guys" who is really into his sports. No huge Superbowl parties and so forth. Regardless though, I noticed something last week that had a direct impact on problems we frequently see in pieces of writing.

The situation started when the whole Marlins and Ozzie Guillen thing came out. If you really want to look at this from a sports standpoint, then go over and check out the ESPN site. What I found interesting though, was the simple fact that for three days straight, on pretty much every show, these broadcasters would spend hours yelling back and forth at each other with absolutely nothing new to say. It always came back to he said something and then they attempted to spend an entire show talking about a statement of fact.

After I noticed this, I started to really listen to some of the shows. NFL Draft, NBA, and so forth would be central topics on the show, but the broadcasters had nothing new to say. In the end, what the listeners were faced with was a show that went on for 3+ hours and no resolution.

But what does this have to do with writing? The answer is simple. Writers will often pick a topic or issue to build their relationships around that is far from significant. No, I am not saying the writer should pick some global cause or mind-altering event. I am simply saying that the conflict they create in the story, the premise of the story itself, is so simple, when it comes to adding material to the story, all they can do is have the characters do the same thing over and over again.

We even hear writers say, when they find they are below word count, that they could simply "add another scene that would be similar to the first one to create that depth." Sorry, this isn't depth, this is repetition. the end result of that is that repetition leads to a boring plot.

The solution to this is simple. Think about the entire story BEFORE you even start to write. Is there really anything the characters can do in the story other than continue to simply do what they always have done? Is the conflict really worthy, or is it simply a miscommuncations that can easily be fixed with a phone call?


1 comment:

  1. This will help writers to think in a innovative way to find the suitable topic. Well explained post with quite important information.