I like my writing lessons suited to my attention span.
Creating a memorable character whose heartache a reader can share is a real challenge. While on my porch near one version of Margaritaville, drinking same, I realized Jimmy Buffett offers us a clear pattern.
In the first refrain of his hit, Margaritaville, he sings, “Some people claim that there’s a woman to blame, but I know it’s nobody’s fault.”
After the second verse, he wavers. “It could be my fault.”
And by the final chorus, he admits the truth. “It’s my own damn fault.”
I’ve started work on a new novel, and I’m working hard to discover the character arcs–that is, how the experiences through the course of the story cause the character to grow. Thanks, Jimmy Buffett, for a simple model in three acts.
Chris Bailey’s writing for hire has appeared online, in numerous U.S. newspapers and in mailboxes across the U.S. and Canada.