Tag Archive - Inner Conflict

The Enemy Within – 8 Tips to Crafting Powerful Inner Conflict

Good fiction is packed full of conflict. While most writers focus on the tension and excitement that plays out in the action unfolding, often the inner landscape of the characters is ignored. Yet, few conflicts are as engaging as the one that is revealed within a character’s own psyche.

The notion of a character being his own worst enemy can add layers of complexity and richness to your story’s scenes, creating opportunities for profound character development and reader empathy.

We can all relate—at one time or another, we’ve been our own worst enemy. Whether it’s a fight over giving in to eat that piece of chocolate cake while on a diet or failing to keep our mouth shut and saying something hurtful to a friend that destroys a relationship, we have all been there. Our characters should “go there” too.

Conflict is the driving force that propels a narrative forward. It serves as the crucible in which characters are tested, revealing their true essence and potential for growth. While external conflicts, such as clashes with adversaries or battles against the elements, are a given with a solid plot, it’s the internal conflicts that often define the heart and soul of a character’s journey and are often missing from the pages. Continue Reading…

Exploring Inner and Outer Conflict in Fiction

Last week we looked at the dynamics of inner conflict in our characters. Let’s dive deeper into the connection between inner conflict and the external situation to see how they work to amplify tension.

Character motivation is the lifeblood of every compelling story, and at its core lies the intricate interplays of inner and outer conflict.

In fiction, characters come alive not merely through their desires and ambitions but through the conflicts they face—both within themselves and in the external world. It’s this dynamic dance between inner turmoil and external challenges that elevates characters from two-dimensional creations to three-dimensional ones that readers can relate to, empathize with, and invest in emotionally.

To infuse your stories with meaningful conflict, we need to get to the heart of character motivation, dissecting the crucial roles that inner and outer conflict play in crafting well-rounded and engaging characters. By understanding how these conflicts shape a character’s journey, you’ll be better equipped to craft memorable characters that lodge in the hearts of readers. Continue Reading…

Navigating the Complex Landscape of Inner Conflict

Fiction writers (and readers!) love conflict. Conflict is story. Conflict keeps readers on the edge of their seats, turning pages, hoping that all the turmoil will resolve in a satisfying way (but not until the last page).

While much attention is given to outer conflict, inner conflict is a more potent force that breathes life into characters and imbues scenes with depth and resonance. Writers who master the skill to intricately weave inner conflict into their stories craft characters that leap off the page and resonate on a profound level.

Understanding the Complexity of Inner Conflict

At the heart of compelling fiction lies the complex interplay of a character’s inner world. While external conflicts manifest in overt battles and visible obstacles, inner conflict thrives beneath the surface, shaping and impacting characters’ motivations, choices, and growth.

To master the art of infusing your scene with inner turmoil, it is imperative to understand its multifaceted nature. Let’s take a look at six important aspects to inner conflict that you should consider when plotting and writing your scenes. Continue Reading…