DON'T BE AFRAID OF A CAST OF ONE
Posted on January 11, 2013
There's an intensity to a narrative when you strip away the other characters in your story and focus on your protagonist. It unlocks a lot more internal monologue and raises the stakes for the character when they have to survive on their wits alone.
In Fractured, the joint novel I am writing with Keith Robinson, a third of the novel is devoted to our characters striking out in a wasteland environment and going it alone. As they work their way deeper into this new untamed world, they discover just what they are truly made of.
With my character Logan, the chance to discover just what he will do to survive is put immediately to the test with back-to-back attacks from two unique types of predators. The jeopardy of the situations allows me the chance to get inside Logan's head. In order for him to find inspiration from within for his rescue, he must use the environment around him to fashion his escape. I found the high stakes of the scenes caused me to write with more velocity. I wanted to see Logan through. With this novel I put new demands on myself that propelled me forward in exciting ways.
At the same time, Keith was putting his character, Kyle, through just as grueling a circumstance. Kyle, like Logan, works inward to solve his problems outwardly. Keith's ability to strike up such a convincing internal monologue for Kyle makes his half of the novel all the richer and vibrant.
Both worlds become grounded in the readers' minds because of how much the main characters invest in not just surviving, but in genuinely changing themselves and their fates. And if they change their worlds in the process, it's all for the better.
The balance of talent and craft in this dual story is something I am eager to share with our readers. There's something special happening with this collaboration that truly drives home the point that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.