Why should you start your story from the middle? Last week, we talked about the middle being Act II of the three-act structure. What goes on in Act II? Act II is the escalating, rise and fall, of conflict in a story. Click to Tweet #amwriting #writefromthemiddle
What usually happens when you’re in the middle of something? Do you sometimes take a step back, and think, “how did I get here?” The same is true for your protagonist. In Act I, they’re faced with something disturbing their ordinary life. They make a decision to do something, it’s a place of no return. The doorway to Act II.
It’s called a “mirror” moment––figuratively, or literally. Take your novel you’re reading right now. Go to the middle of it. For example, I just read Mary Connealy’s Too Far Down. I’m going to write a review of it, but I just flipped to the middle.
Since this is historical romance, there are two main characters. One of them is Cole Boden. Someone’s after his family and property. In the middle of this, he finds himself falling in love with Melanie “Mel” Blake.
Cole was the privileged and smart Boden boy. He’s the oldest child, and his grandparents tried to run his life. He did spend ten years with them. He’s just received word that possibly his beloved grandparents, though dead, may have been involved in a “long game” to ruin the Bodens. Here’s what he’s thinking.
Cole closed his eyes. He tried to be honest with himself. He knew the way his grandparents had wielded power.
He tried to be honest with himself. That’s his “mirror” moment. It was quite a shock to learn that his grandparents were on a list of a people that may have been involved in assassination attempts, burnouts, and blowups––all to wipe out his family.
The “mirror” moment is when the protagonist takes a reflective look at themselves. They wonder how they got there, and what to do next. Click to Tweet #amwriting #writefromthemiddle
Can you identify the “mirror” moments in your life? Have you had one recently regarding some situation in your life? Leave a comment and let me know.