One of my characters has a very hard time dealing with his reaction to conflict situations. He is forced into a situation completely alien to his ideal existence. He’s made to do things he finds abhorrent – things that go against his core values. During his journey, he begins to question himself. Wondering why he reacts the way he does, and if he really is as pure as he likes to believe.
The thing is, it can be kind of difficult to convey this kind of inner conflict. In every external conflict scene he’s in, he goes through the same fight or flight choice as the other characters, but his reactions are always uncertain. He doesn’t really know himself enough to predict what he’ll do next. He is reacting on instinct – and he doesn’t like it.
I have gone back to rework his first scene and cut out a lot of the parts where he’s battling with himself. The reader doesn’t need me to tell them all of this. It’s like a guy introducing himself at a bus stop and by the time you get on the bus you know all about how much he hates his job, how much he wants to open a cake shop in Skegness and that he’s having an odd pain in his back that’s worrying him.
Way to much information thanks.
I don’t blame myself for putting all of that extra detail in draft zero, but it’s time to get a grip and murder my darlings. He’s going to go through hell in this book and I need to take his issues and weave them throughout the book. Slowly chipping away at his character, until a new one is created.