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  1. Ellerby

    Ellerby New Member

    Nov 17, 2014
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    The beginning, comments

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Ellerby, Nov 17, 2014.

    I am writing a story about two very different women who end up in the same summerhouse. They both expected to rent a house for the summer holiday by themselves, but due to a misunderstanding, they must live together for about a week. The two women are: Sarah, 27, a journalist and former model, blonde, 5'7", 110lbs. Mira, 21, a college student, brunette, 5'5", 250lbs. They are polar opposites and live different lifestyles, and after a while they start to go on each others nerves.

    I'm fine with my second act, and know how the third will go, but I still have problems with the first act and how these two will act around each other the first few days living together.

    Should I go with the obvious? Snarky comments on different lifestyles? Or should I just let them keep their thoughts for themselves?
    What would be the most humiliating for the one to do/say to the other, and vice versa?
  2. Some_Bloke

    Some_Bloke Active Member

    Oct 14, 2014
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    Northern Ireland
    I wouldn't start with the obvious, but that's just my view.

    I'd have them try to get along at first, but then discover they have nothing in common and fall out.
    Okon likes this.
  3. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 9, 2010
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    I don't see that as "the obvious". These are adults, not junior high school students. There's no particular likelihood that they'd go to aggression unless there's a reason, and body shape and hair color aren't a reason.

    Especially in this situation, where they're stuck with each other, I would expect even a "mean girl" type to suppress those impulses.
    jannert and Okon like this.
  4. A_Jones

    A_Jones Member

    Nov 12, 2014
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    Remember you cant force a character to do something that goes against their make up. put the two in the situation and see what happens. Think about what they want to achieve, (a quite weekend away) what is in their way (some random chick who showed up and claims this is their house) and what they are going to do about it. Always keep that in mind with every step and it will happen all by itself. If it doesnt work out, they you know you have to change something somewhere.
    jannert and Okon like this.
  5. Okon

    Okon Contributing Member Contributor

    Sep 26, 2013
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    Yeah, conflict isn't usually just there at the outset, unless the two parties are seriously incapable of tolerance and just super-insecure. People usually try to get along at first, and are often too busy to find fault quickly.

    I understand you're attempting a formula similar to comedies that enjoy conflict of class, personality or culture, but those often capitalize on the differing decisions that those people make, and why they make them. The end (of my favourites) involves each one learning something from the other and reaching a common ground—not to say it's necessary.

    I suggest you figure out the character arc for each woman first, whether or not she resolves her own conflict, and how the other one will affect her path. After that, you will know specifically where they differ, and will be able to create tangible, tit-for-tat irritants.

    jannert likes this.
  6. jannert

    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

    Mar 7, 2013
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    Yeah, I agree. I am a little worried that you've told us their height, weight, hair colour and profession, and nothing else about them. That's not really the basis for anything much. It's what their personalities are like, their backgrounds, their interests, their goals and their experiences that will determine how they behave towards each other. Not their hair colour and weight.
    Okon and A_Jones like this.

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