Earlier today we sat for a fantastic seminar by Lori L. Lake on character, including a piece on values in conflict. It was a way of looking at motivation for your characters that I hadn't thought of. Fiction really isn't a conflict of characters, it's a conflict of values that drives the characters.
If you take a character and ask them what nothing is more important than XXXXXXXX, you can determine the values of your characters. In my book, BINGO BARGE MURDER, my main character, Shay, values her friends and relatives. She'll go to bat for them to excess if the situation calles for it. She values homesty and loyalty, and will go to the wire for what she believes in.
Shay's best friend, Coop, values the environment, his friends, animal rights, and staying out of jail. Eddy, their elderly confidant and friend, values Shay and Coop, Law & Order, adventure, poker, personal integrity, and a big dose of common sense. JT, my detective who's after Coop, values bringing the bad guys to justice, her cappucino, and her intuition. Bring them all together and you have a big old messy conundrum. I'd never thought of conflict in this way, and I have to say it was quite a revelation.So we ended the lessons of the day and I went back to checking out the sights. The rest of these pictures are, to me, a little piece of heaven that somehow calms my soul. And kicks in my exploring gene. I better make darn sure I write profusely while I'm here, and maybe the reeds, sand dunes, and crashing, rolling, heaving waves help. If nothing else, it's one hell of a breath of fresh air!