Generating Conflict in Writing

This week on Hide and Create, Joshua Essoe, Jordan Ellinger, Diana Rowland, and Moses Siregar generate some conflict.

Without conflict you don’t have a story.

Unless your character is doing something you have no plot. The plot comes from the MC doing everything he or she can to overcome the obstacles standing between them and their goal(s).

Conflict is entertaining. Conflict not only drives your story but will drive your audience. Think about what is popular on television now, and the proliferation of reality TV. Why do we watch it? Remove obvious contenders like Survivor or Real Housewives or Jersey Shore where the conflict is in your face. Would you watch a show about cooking food like Ace of Cakes or Iron Chef if there was no conflict? Of course not! Conflict drives tension. It can be a race against time. It can be internal, it can be romantic. It doesn’t have to be a big fight scene, or knock-down drag-out battle.

As a bonus this week, we have the full outtake of my conflict-ramble, creating a “live” story out of the three main types of conflict for you:

http://www.writingpodcastonline.com/audio/JoshuaExposition.mp3

2 thoughts on “Generating Conflict in Writing

  1. Thanks for the link, Josh. An interesting article for sure. I would like to point out though, that you must write for your target audience. And if you want your story to commercially successful you’ll write for a large one. If, in evaluating your audience, you find that the plot-without-conflict story appeals, then go for it! Keep in mind, however, that most traditional Western publishers would likely not be interested in such a story; you’d be faced with an uphill battle. I’d be very curious to see market share percentages for this kind of story in both Western and Eastern markets.

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