Conflict Through Crisis 1

When I was away at the SWiC16, Daniel José Older was a keynote speaker. He talked about working as a medic.  Some stories were funny, lighthearted and others cut a little deep.

What cut deep?

That all of us have moments in our lives that bring about change. They are moments that leave a mark. Once they occur, we  are forever different and carry that moment with us forever.

They can happen when reading an outstanding book, through spiritual enlightenment or a religious experience, meeting someone who becomes a part of our life,  or witnessing/surviving an event.

These moments build our character and make us the people we are today. Whether we were brave about it or not doesn’t matter. What matters is how we let these moments change us.

After a crisis it is impossible to continue as if it didn’t happen.

For example, although doctors face life and death daily, they still go home and live their lives. The life and death events do not affect them on a personal level.

However, a near death experience can be life altering.

Have you ever used a personal crisis within your story and did help build the tension as you intended?

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21 responses to “Conflict Through Crisis 1

  1. I’ve never used a personal crisis in my writing but as I’m new to all of this, I’m sure it will happen at some point. They definitely aren’t fun but they do shape you and the path you take going forward, often in interesting ways.

  2. Yes, My short story on my blog “It Should of Rained Carnations” is a true story about the way the event felt in that moment when I lost my mother as a teenager. Definitely made it more emotional and powerful short piece.

    I have a story in my drawer based on some events in young adult years that is a fictional but uses a lot of similar circumstances and the emotion the circumstances evoke–I can tell it has the potential to be powerful if I can write it.

    I often think about how would this make me feel when writing to capture and understand the emotion and decisions involved in the tale I am trying to tell.

    Juneta @ Writer’s Gambit

  3. One of my short stories, Dream Frigate (currently available for free on wattpad) is based on my personal experience. The young heroine was diagnosed with cancer. The story is about how she deals with such a diagnosis. The entire situation is fraught with tension and fear, and I based her feelings on my own after a similar diagnosis. It changes everybody.

  4. Life experiences do indeed shape us. None are unimportant.

  5. If I don’t use an event itself, I’ll often use the feelings that came with/from it.

  6. Great post Anna. I guess professionals eventually become immune to death and the discomforts the rest of us can only imagine. I have used lots of personal traumas to infuse conflict, especially in character backgrounds. Though my last plot point I couldn’t think of because it was so foreign. I had a great brainstorming buddy though. 🙂

  7. Fantastic post. It amazes me how people who work jobs that deal in crises like that manage to push on and live their lives. I admire that a lot. It takes a lot of strength, and I love when people use that in stories to build up their characters.

  8. I’ve certainly had many moments that left marks. I use those in my stories. 🙂

  9. I had 3 near death experiences when I was a child. I had no concept of what it must have been like for my parents until we lost our eldest, then his twin 18 years later. Almost makes one think that I was being primed for those moments. Of course, they’ve changed me in ways I can’t articulate, but I do have a much more calmness about death now. Being a writer definitely helps. I’m able to channel so much of the uncertainty about life and the explosive emotions around death. G

    • I’m sorry for you loss. Things like that travel with us no matter where we go and writing is a great way to express the feelings that never seem to let go completely.

  10. Pingback: Conflict Through Crisis 2 | elements of emaginette

  11. jennifer@badbirdreads

    Hmm, no never tried that in my writing. I will have to.

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