Throw Rocks at Your Characters

Fact: I’m going through a stressful time in my life.

I have three of assignments, each one ridiculously large. All of them are due at the same time. I have two exams with in the next few weeks, one of which will stretch across an entire three periods. I have to work out what I’m going to do next year. Study business at university? Or humanities? Where am I going to live? On campus, or at home? I’m getting mountains of information for state-wide tests. I’m getting too much information on the different universities and the courses they have to offer. Will I get a good enough OP? Will I get into the university course I want? What university course do I want?

I’m under a lot of pressure, and I’m beginning to struggle under it all.

I’m not a hero.

The heroes of our books need to be tough. Really tough. Tough enough to take the weight of all the stress. The lack of sleep. The threat of death from the antagonist. The physical exertion. Trying to outwit and defeat the antagonist…

The list goes on.

One writer wrote on their blog that a story was the following:
Put your character in a tree.
Throw rocks at them.
Get them out.

As writers, we need to be mean to our characters. Don’t just throw pebbles at them. Throw big rocks at them. Set the tree alight. Put an enemy in the tree with them.

But the heroes can always find a way to keep the sanity through all the rock throwing, and come out on top when they get out of the tree. That’s what makes them heroes.


2 Responses to Throw Rocks at Your Characters

  1. Great advice and very true. The heroes do have to go through horrible things and make it through the otherside, otherwise, why are they the hero? Thanks for sharing this and wishing you luck getting through all the stress.

  2. Mia says:

    Very true. Put your character in a tree, throw rocks at them, get them out. I’ll have to remember that.

    Hope the stress in your own life will fade away soon, and you’ll find the wisdom to make the right choices.

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