I had a conversation with a friend yesterday morning, over coffee, during which we discussed writing. During the course of the discussion, she mentioned someone with a military history, a person who served as the inspiration for a story she wrote. That comment, in turn, reminded me that I’ve been thinking of writing a story based on a the experiences of a person, with a military connection, who I’ve watched evolve, online, for several years. I got excited about the idea again. But later I began to question all the other stories about which I was “all fired up,” only to write and never finish them or finish them and wonder why I did. And then, it occurred to me; I have to know my characters’ motivations, inside out, in order to develop a plot sufficient to warrant keeping my attention, much less a reader’s attention. So, I’m going to ascribe a lot of attributes, including personal history, to some of my favorite characters, people I’ve written into being in stories and vignettes. And I’ll see if some of them come to life in ways that suggest intriguing plots that allow their personalities to come out and carry me, and prospective readers, to places we want to go.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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