Revising My WIP
Working On Dramatic Scenes
I thought I had 29 of them when I started. It turned out I had 28, so far.
I hoped my earlier experience with converting scenes from other scenes into Dramatic Scenes would help me. I don’t think it hurt, but it hasn’t been easy, either. I updated five scenes in four days.
How am I doing with Dramatic Scenes?
At least I wasn’t writing Dramatic Scenes for the first time. From my recent experience in converting scenes into Dramatic, I understood that the Decision is the heart of this scene type. And I need to pump a lot of emotion into the early part of the scene so that, as the decision nears, I can thin out the exposition and race forward with just dialog.
The five scenes I improved were a mixed bag. Two were original to my first draft, two came when I wrote my first revision, and one was brand new. And I had the easiest time with them in that order, with the more mature scenes closer to what I wanted, the newer scenes needed focus, and my newest scene was so poorly developed I considered converting it to another scene.
The decisions the POV characters made were interesting, and I could see strong story consequences. Two of them stuck out to me. The first was a new scene where I finally pinned down my villain / love interest’s motivation, and his decision casts him as a hero in his own eyes, and has terrible consequences for everyone. And in another one, which is actually Plot Point One, my MC launches herself on a course of action that will let to terrible grief and crush her emotionally before she finally triumphs 52 scenes later.
I understand now, that for structures in future stories, that Plot Point One must be a dramatic scene, because I want my MC to consciously decide to tackle the story question, and it changes her life forever. I also discovered the value of a dramatic scene for my villain / love interest, where he also decides to do something terrible.
I’m still not sure I have my dramatic scene approach down as well as I can get it. I still need to learn how to strip away exposition in a graceful manner once the emotion flows and my POV character races toward a painful decision.
I added no new scenes, so, I’m still at 96. Since reworked five scenes, I’ve still got 23 dramatic scenes to go, and 69 total. That still seems like an impossibly large number.