Monday, November 14, 2011

Like a Skyscraper

I’ve had Demi Lavoto’s song Skyscraper stuck in my head for days.I never got sick of it though, and I think it's because it’s such a powerful song. Demi wrote the lyrics after her hardships with rehab and everything that came with it. Her voice seems strained, and you can hear the emotion in every word, but it is so inspiring. The combination is just heart wrenching, and you can feel how vulnerable she is.

Often in writing I really can’t connect to a character until they are stripped down of their pride, power, or success, and are completely vulnerable. It might sound strange, but how are can anyone feel a connection to the protagonist if they don’t have any problems?

Some of the best chapters happen when the main character feels broken, shattered, and defeated. Because it's so breathtakingly beautiful in that one moment when they rise up (and hopefully they do, I’m a sucker for happy endings) and defeat their dragon.

Apply this to Harry Potter, Twilight, or Hunger Games, all of the main characters have moments when they feel they can’t go on. Harry sees his friends and family die in order to save him. In New Moon after Edward leaves, Bella can hardly will herself to live. And Katniss repeatedly stares death in the face as every battle could be her last. Obviously these books are EXTREMELY different, and chances are you probably prefer one over another (Okay, I’m pretty positive you do). But each heroine, protagonist, or warrior has that one moment when they’ve hit rock bottom, and you can feel their pain. They are vulnerable, but that is why you root for them. That is what makes a character's journey so powerful.

What are some of your favorite scenes/chapters from these novels? Or any other novel?

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