Conflict is the engine that propels your narrative forward. As you journey beyond National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), delve into the art of crafting diverse and compelling conflicts that create tension, drive character growth, and keep readers engaged. This article explores techniques for developing various types of conflict and utilizing them to elevate your storytelling to new heights.
Character vs. Self
Internal conflict arises from a character’s internal struggles, desires, or conflicting emotions. Explore their doubts, fears, and personal dilemmas, allowing readers to empathize with their inner battles.
Character vs. Character
Interpersonal conflict involves clashes between characters with differing goals, beliefs, or personalities. Create dynamic interactions that spark tension and propel the story through clashes and power struggles.
Character vs. Environment
Conflict with the environment involves characters facing challenges from their surroundings, such as harsh weather, dangerous landscapes, or societal restrictions. Environmental conflict tests characters’ resilience and resourcefulness.
Character vs. Society
Characters can clash with societal norms, rules, or expectations. Explore themes of rebellion, injustice, or conformity to highlight the tension between individual desires and societal pressures.
Character vs. Supernatural
Supernatural conflict introduces elements beyond the natural world, such as magic, mythical creatures, or the unexplained. This type of conflict adds an element of mystery and intrigue to your narrative.
Character vs. Fate or Destiny
Characters grappling with fate or destiny face forces that seem predetermined. Explore the tension between characters’ free will and the inevitable course of events.
Allow conflicts to evolve and change over the course of your story. As characters adapt and grow, their conflicts should also transform, leading to new challenges and resolutions.
Ensure that conflicts are motivated by characters’ desires, fears, or goals. Motivated conflicts create emotional investment and give depth to characters’ struggles.
Rising and Falling Conflict
Manipulate the intensity of conflict to control pacing. Introduce rising conflict to build tension and excitement, and provide moments of falling conflict for reflection and character development.
Crafting diverse and compelling conflicts is essential for driving your narrative forward and engaging readers. By exploring different conflict types and allowing conflicts to evolve, you create a dynamic and immersive storytelling experience that resonates with audiences.