Happy Thanksgiving! On this holiday Monday we have Cyndi Faria finishing up her series on Unleashing Your Muse.
Cindy, thank you for having me guest post on GWN. Today, I’m wrapping up my 4 part series on Unleashing Your Muse by Free-Writing Act I, Act IIA, Act IIB, and Act III. To review the prior blog posts, click on the highlighted Acts.
Act III is my favorite 25% of the novel. It’s where all the action takes place, the plants are revealed, the loose ends are tied up, the villain is defeated, and the H/h prove they’ve changed and attain their happily ever after. Below is the information you’ll want to include in your free write:
Plot and Characterization Combined:
- The challenge;
- Acceptance of the challenge;
- Allies from Act 1 show up and join forces with allies from Act II to help defeat the minor villains;
- Minor villains are defeated or killed off or punished;
- May, briefly, interact with main villain;
- Gifted tools/information for journey;
- Lose ends from the plot are resolved;
- Romantically, the H/h come together;
- Character transformation is shown (Example: change of clothes);
- Character transformation is proved by facing greatest fear;
- Final battle against the villain;
- Hero uses his tool/talent to defeat the villain;
- The hero is shown transformed (show new behavior);
- H/h is recognized as a true hero;
- Hero gets the girl (heroine gets the guy);
- H/h get their HEA/goal; and
- Final Image Opposite of Opening Image.
Using the movie The Village by M. Night Shyamalan, I’ve free written the bullet point items into a paragraph format (note: the numbers preceding each sentence correspond to the numbers above):
At the end of Act IIB, the heroine Ivy Walker is devastated when her fiancé Lucius is struck down by the villain (Noah). (1) Unless Lucius receives “medicines” from the far away towns, he’ll die. And, because of the village rules, the only person who is allowed to save Lucius is Ivy. (2) She volunteers to seek “medicines” that will save Lucius’s life, but the towns are only reachable by traveling through the forbidden forest. (3) With the help of her father, she details her intentions to the Elders, (4) who after consideration grant her permission to “preserve innocence of the village inhabitants”. (5) Before she leaves, she faces Noah and slaps him, further angering Noah by rejecting him fully. (6) Her father presents her with the tools (gold watch and medication list) she’ll need to save Lucius. Her father shares an Elder secret: the monsters in the forest are, mostly, “farce” and a ploy to keep the people from leaving the safety of the village. (7) Loose ends are tied up, when it’s discovered Noah has found a hidden monster costume and is the one who’s been terrorizing the village. (8) Romantically, Ivy goes to an unconscious Lucius and promises him she’ll save him. (9) Transformed, she wears a yellow gown. (10) All her life she’s dreamed of becoming one of the boys who prove their courage by turning their back to the forbidden forest. Lucius holds the record. Ivy enters the terrifying forest with two boys that are too scared to venture further. They leave her to face her quest alone. In the forest, she lets go of the belief that her gender and handicap (she’s blind) are what keeps her from facing her fear of being useless. After all, she’s proved braver than the boys. Her love for Lucius keeps her focused. (11) Then Noah, dressed as a monster, attacks Ivy. (12) Because of her blindness, Ivy uses her gift of spatial awareness to relocate a hole she fell into earlier. With her back to Noah—like the boys’ game—she stands in front of the hole. Noah rushes her, but she ducts just in time and Noah falls into the hole. He dies. (13) With renewed determination, she runs to the town. (14) Because of her transformation and compassionate nature, she’s aided by a patrolman who gets her what she needs. She returns to the community as a heroine. (15) The final scene shows Ivy and Lucius holding hands, his steady breath can be heard, and (16) someone says Lucius is going to live because of Ivy. (17) The final image, Ivy is no longer an incapable but has transformed to a knowledgeable Elder.
Now it’s your turn. Practice on movies. It’s fun.
Or unleash your muse and free-write Act III.
This can be a combination of sentences, thoughts, dialogue, or whatever pops into your mind. There are no rules.
I usually write 3-5 pages, single-spaced. Sometimes information that belongs in other acts creeps in. That’s okay—just start a new section titled Other Acts and when finished move the information to where it belongs.
Thank you for joining me and I hope to see you next month!
Happy Writing, Cyndi Faria
About the Author:
“Cyndi Faria writes with passion and her stories touch the heart.”
—Virna DePaul, Bestselling Author
Cyndi Faria is an engineer turned romance writer whose craving for structure is satisfied by plotting heart-warming paranormal romance stories about Native American folklore, cursed spirits, lost souls, harbingers, and even a haunted coastal town. If you love a tale with courageous heroes and heroines, where their unconditional love for each other gives them strength to defeat their inner demons, Cyndi Faria invites you to enter the pages of her stories.
On and off her sexy romance pages, this California country girl isn’t afraid to dirty her hands fighting for the underdog and caretaking rescued pets. Find her helping fellow writers and leading readers to happily-ever-after at www.cyndifaria.com
Cindy here again!
Thanks for being here, Cyndi! Great series of articles and lots to think about!