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suspensewriter

I've Been Reading James Scott Bell

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Mr. Bell maintains that in the middle of the book, we should have a "Mirror Moment."   There are two kinds of Mirror Moments- 1) where the lead character is forced to look inside at himself and sort of human being that he is in this point of the story.  He sees "reflected" back at him a self that is morally flawed and must decide what he is going to do about it.  The 2) kind of Mirror Moment is one where the character does not look at his moral failings,  In fact, he remains basically the same person.  It's just that in the middle of the plot he realizes he's probably going to die ( either physically,or professionally or psychologically).   So the Mirror Moment tells you what kind of transformation your character has.

 

It's an interesting idea- what do you think?

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Does the story grid or beat something say that in the middle of the book something is supposed to happen to the protagonist that makes his achieving his desire almost impossible? This sounds like a variation on that.

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No, actually it is, as far as I know, an original thought.  He says that the Mirror Moment is at or about the center of all good novels.  An interesting thought.

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Self examination.  Hmmm.  The best books cause the reader to know themselves better.  Their brains activate as if they are actually doing what the character does therefore a self examining character would lead the reader even deeper into themselves.  

That has powerful implications for the writer!  We have to reach even deeper and consider even more possibilities of self realisation, and then choose one or two for the character to arrive at.  

The second mirror kind sounds easier!  Just have all these obstacles crush the character.  No, now that I think about it, considering all the possibilities of reactions to, "I'm gonna die!" is pretty hard too.  

Thank you for stimulating this thought, SW!  

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