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  1. enO
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    enO Member

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    Motivated Amateur

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by enO, Oct 10, 2007.

    After a recent battle with depression, and in my opinion, a victory, Ive really wanted to express the possibility of overcoming the hopeless feeling that comes along with it. My idea is to show a clear division between genuinely helping yourself fight it, and feeding the fire. To do this, I want to occasionally and completely change the narrative tone depending on the protagonist's actions; that being, from a defeatist, despairing tone, to a confident, hopeful one. My main concern is overly relying on sympathy to push my point.
    I am not by any means an established writer, but I would really like to get some feedback on my ideas before I commit myself to a rough draft. I realize I probably haven't given much to go on, and that ultimately my ability to write will determine my success, but I would love to know what everyone thinks of my theme.

    Thank you for your time,
    - Cory
     
  2. Scavenger
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    Scavenger Senior Member

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    I think that, as long as the tone shows some congruency with the events of the story, that you have a wonderful idea here. Weaselword was talking somewhere else about the unreliable narrative tool, and it's relative usefullness in third/first person. I don't know what PoV you're writing this from, but either way you could have a lot of fun skewing events and distorting perceptions of how things actually are compared to how someone dealing with depression might view them.

    you do run the risk of making the character come across as somewhat bipolar, if you make too large a gap between these two emotions. So make sure that this hopeful tone of yours does not end up sounding manic.

    That said, it might be interesting to do it as a series of tones, in a gradual procession, starting with one, or somewhere in the middle, and working up (or down) and back again, to show the changes in mindset and mood. This would be instead of simply having two tones to pick from. You can play with a lot more subtlety here, and the progression of emotions, from bad to good to worse to okay, or whatever you choose, will be a lot more complex and, arguably, realistic.

    Cheers, and welcome to the forums!
     
  3. enO
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    enO Member

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    This is an awesome suggestion. I hope I can pull it off!

    LOL

    Thanks for the warning!

    My only concern is making it too complex and having the reader wondering where exactly it is that I'm going. If I was to go from bad to good and then back to bad, I'm not sure what the best way would be to wrap things up.
    I suppose it's up to me but do you think I should end with a depressing tone? I would have to assume the reader realizes I'm not trying to enforce a hopeless mood, I'm simply showing the contrast between fighting depression and letting it get the best of you.
    If I end with a hopeful tone, I don't want the reader to forget how the story got to that point. Any suggestions on how I could do this; would it be necessary?
    Regardless, you've been a great help!

    Thanks!
     
  4. Funny Bunny
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    Funny Bunny Contributing Member

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    I would say you don't need feedback before starting out on an experiment. It sounds like a do-able thing. I was hospitalized for depression many years ago. I often write about depressed and/ or addicted characters without ever really making it an issue. Many people are depressed, either long term or temporarily. I do not ever think that sympathy is part of why anyone every reads my work (or does anything with or for me). A likable character can have major flaws. When you start and write a rough draft, that is where and when you will find when something works or does not.

    "What is the story" is more important than "what is the theme" I did not read the story in the paragraph you presented. I think that you could pull off an appropriate story with several voices because generally a character really does change and so the voice changes. You have to play with it, just like any artist needs to play with an idea. You publish/finish probably 1% of anything you start. Good luck! FB
     

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