Julie Frost, SFF writer (agilebrit) wrote,
Julie Frost, SFF writer

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Ruminations on Story

So, I've got this little flash piece I was thinking about subbing to a publication, and I was staring at it and trying to decide if it's even a story, to be honest. I read it to the Hubby, and he thinks it's a story, so that's something.

Story is, after all, a Person in a Place with a Problem. My protagonist is certainly all of those (although, being a werewolf, the "person" part can, I suppose, be debated). And the Problem is resolved satisfactorily at the end. There is certainly more that can be told there, and I have plans for expansion, but I can sub the thing as-is with a clear conscience, I think.

But then, of course, I got to thinking about it. It's first person from the wolf's POV, and there is a certain... lack of tension there, as to whether he's going to survive this encounter or not. In a first-person narrative, the assumption is that your POV character lives. Now, I've violated this "rule" more than once, and other people have too, but 99 times out of 100, a first-person protag lives through the whole story unless they come back as a ghost or something.

So then I got to thinking, well, hey... (SPOILER) the hunter lets him walk away in the end, and wouldn't it be more interesting to tell the story from her perspective? I lose all the fun stuff about his age and how he's watched the world change and how tired and alone he is, but I gain a bunch of things as far as her family history goes and get to really drill down into why she doesn't kill him.

The particular publication I have in mind for this has an open sub period to the end of July. So I do have time to play with it. Switching POVs might be terrible in the end, and maybe I'll go back to the original when all's said and done. But the magic of writing is in the rewrite, and the beauty of being a writer is that we can play with things like this--especially in a flash piece.

It also makes the title a little more interesting, but I won't get into the whys here because the publication wants anonymous submissions.
Tags: writing meta, writing process
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