1. Shydowyn
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    Shydowyn New Member

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    Written myself into a corner.

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Shydowyn, Feb 3, 2013.

    Help! I'm in the first chapter of my story and I think I've written myself into a corner.

    I have two main characters in a scene where they need to meet for the first time.
    The first character has been hurt and needs a little bandaging up after having been beaten brutally. The second character finds him in this state and his intention is to help which brings us to them meeting.

    The problem is that the second character believes he cannot be seen, heard or touched without seizing the first characters senses and destroying his sense of self. This wont happen of course but I don't want to reveal this to the second character until much later. I just want the first character to have a sense that he has met a physical being that isn't just a punch drunk dream. This gives him the drive to return to seek out the second character to confirm he isn't crazy.
    How do I get across the second characters altruistic intent to help to the first character? whilst the second character is not wanting himself to be seen heard or touched at the same time?

    I wonder if I haven't over complicated this scene.
    But this sets up future scenes so I really don't want to let this idea go so easily.
    Does anyone have any suggestions? Or does this need to be abandoned?
     
  2. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Can the second character write a note for the first character to read?
     
  3. Shydowyn
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    Shydowyn New Member

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    The scene takes place at night in a forest. So not in this situation no.
     
  4. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Well, you're in a tough situation. You have definitely written yourself into a corner. You're going to have to figure a way out of it yourself, or modify a rule or two to allow this scene to take place.
     
  5. Roxie
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    Roxie Active Member

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    This might be going snow-white here, but can the second charater communicate with animals ... maybe have a deer or something saunter by and then go help the first character in it's stead? Or can the first caracther be hurt to the point of delirium that he's left wondering who/how he has been helped?
     
  6. FinishingFlight
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    FinishingFlight Member

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    Can the second character manipulate the surroundings? Possibly build a fire for warmth? Or somehow lead a random stranger to the hurt character with sticks arrows, and/or rocks that spell out 'help' or something of the nature. Possibly steal a cell phone from someone else and leaves it next to the hurt character...The hurt character can know that something odd happened to investigate it without seeing the second character. I would go that route of working around with physically helping.
     
  7. Shydowyn
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    Shydowyn New Member

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    Thanks Roxie, I had considered something along those lines like a familiar of some sort but it wouldn't fit well in future scenes.
     
  8. Shydowyn
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    Shydowyn New Member

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    FinishingFlight, You've just given me a great idea! The fire! It's not so easy to see someone on the other side of a well built fire is it? I'll have the first character wake with it already roaring and perhaps he could just about make out that there is a figure on the other side of it. the remains of a fire in the morning will be some proof that he didn't dream it. Thank you!
     
  9. pashley
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    pashley New Member

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    I would start by trying to imagine what this must be like for this character. Sounds like a lonely existence to me, one that might create a deep yearning to have contact with someone, anyone. This might be the angle you're looking for...just an overwhelming desire for normalcy, a need so great that it drives him to commit an act that he believes is against his best interests.
     
  10. Shydowyn
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    Shydowyn New Member

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    This is exactly what I'm aiming for. The character has already had a previous encounter where he was so emotionally scarred by the event that he made strict, self imposed, rules not to engage with anyone. Of course the need to connect with another being is his weakness here. I just wonder if I haven't overcomplicated the situation for the sake of internal conflict.
     
  11. JennyM
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    JennyM Member

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    Interesting concept, love a good puzzle.

    Perhaps your character could do some sort of mind somersault which would occupy that side of the brain, power, or spell that causes his problem. Or maybe hold something like cryptonite which would negate his problem.

    How about hypnotising his friend to believing what is 'real'. Rather like those stage hypnotists do with an unusual shaking of hands.

    What if he has some sort of magic joss stick that gives off an ultra magnetic forcefield when lit - but to light the stick the character needs a special flame by rubbing two secret stones together, the forcefield vapours from the joss stick provides a window of possibilities.
     
  12. GhostWolfe
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    GhostWolfe Member

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    Unless I'm misunderstanding, couldn't the second char apply first aid, causing the first char to wake & wonder who helped them? The first char could then feel the urge to try & find their mysterious benefactor.

    Makes me think of the song the Holy Grail with the line "but I woke up alone, all my wounds were clean".
     
  13. jwideman
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    jwideman Senior Member

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    You only write yourself into a corner when you forget there's more than two dimensions.
    Why is it important for the second character to communicate their altruism?
     
  14. iolair
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    iolair Active Member

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    Maybe saving Character One's life is so important that it allows Character Two to overcome these barriers - but some (actual or perceived) consequence of this event causes the barriers to become stronger than ever. Some reaction by Character One is misinterpreted by Two and causes Two to believe that they DID overcome/destroy that characters self, and guilt makes Two more insular than ever.

    Also, I did like finishingflight's suggestion.
     

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