Awakening the Author Within
What Are You Trying to Say?
Addressing Conflict and Theme
Anytime you write,
you should think about
what solution am I giving
to a problem or conflict
that, not only may I be having,
but that a lot of people around me,
in society, are having as well.
The most common conflicts
in story telling are:
Man vs. Self:
learning how to inquire a new skill,
or learning how to overcome
fear, anger, self-doubt, etc.
Man vs. Nature:
this could be in the form of fiction
or nonfiction. There are many
facing our world today.
Man vs. Society:
Just as there are many
facing our society today,
there are also many social issues
our society is still dealing with.
The election, transgender bathroom issues,
immigrants coming into the country are just a few that are trending at the current moment,
but there are many, many more one could write, or communicate about.
Man vs. Man:
These could be physical fights we have with those around us, or more often than not,
emotional ones. It could be learning how to see things from other’s point of view, or simply just learning how to love.
Man vs. Technology:
Sometimes this topic
could cross over with Man vs. Society.
We are at a point where technology is growing at an exponential rate. People are constantly learning how to use and adapt to these new technologies and see how they can improve, or in some cases, detract from their lives.
Man vs. Supernatural:
This type of conflict
often brings about more questions
rather than answers,
but they are always fun,
and sometimes frustrating,
to try to answer—
Who or what is God?
Does God exist?
Fate or free will?
Are there such things as ghosts?
Can people really predict the future?
Do aliens exist? Etc…
And sometimes, many times, questions and problems overlap with more than one conflict or theme area.
So before you write, or communicate, think about: what problem are you having or seeing others have that you think you would be able to answer, either for yourself, or for others?
Finally, you want to ask yourself:
what do I want them to take way from my communication?
So far the question stems you should be able to answer are:
The problem or question I, and others may have is…
So I want to be able to… (analyze, compare, contrast, explain, discern, judge, identify, introduce, narrate, recount, summarize, acknowledge, advocate, assert, promote, support, critic, oppose, etc.)
Because that will….
People who would want to hear this message would be…because…
They are (novices, experts, people who)…
so I have to…(go back to your ‘so I want to be able to question. Does it match your audience and where they are, or do you have to change it?)
Knowing where you are writing from, who you are writing to, where you want to take them, and what message you want them to leave with will help you stay focused and find the right audience for your message.