Had an excellent conference yesterday with the Ozark Romance Writer's in Springfield, Missouri. We got to hear from industry professionals on the state of publishing. Romance novelists Leah Michaels and Shannon K Butcher gave excellent presentations on suspense plotting and things that stump the best of us. I got to give a humorous presentation on heroes that all started because of Flynn Rider in the movie Tangled.
Half way through the movie he remarks, "I don't do back story." Well, I jotted down some of the events that happened during the movie and, viola, the pattern for hero-making.
A couple of my favorite points:
One favorite line occurred at the Snuggly Duckling when Rapunzel says, "Give me back my guy." It is a lovely analogy for that point in the romance novel when the heroine realizes she wants/needs the hero.
At another time, Flynn attempts to return the crown to his former comrades-in-arms. Rapunzel is concerned and says to the effect, "I was starting to think you ran off with the crown and left me." Of course, it's all part of the wicked Gothel's plan to get Rapunzel back and discredit Flynn, but the point is, that during the writing of a manuscript one might have them meet and conquer danger while keeping the larger danger, the dark moment, in the back ground and spring it on the reader at the end. And the more emotional turning point is that Rapunzel now has doubts about Flynn.
Tangled is a great pattern card for blocking out a hero for your next manuscript.