Welcome to the 2013 A to Z Challenge!
This year, I’m focusing on two themes: Emotions and grammar,
depending on which letter we’re on each day.
Today’s an emotion day!
Y is for Yearning: a deep longing, especially when accompanied by tenderness or sadness
I think yearning is likely at the core of every plot ever imagined. It’s what drives the characters, their yearning for whatever it is they want or need. It’s at the heart of every human being. We each have our own dreams, our own desires, and we yearn for them to come true, to be made whole, to be fully realized.
The key to making your reader accept your character’s yearning is to not only have them sympathize with his underlying belief system, but fully empathize, as well. That which makes us each unique also forms our personal mythos, and those internal principles define not only how we perceive the world, but how we react to it and the choices we make.
So the writer must indoctrinate the reader to a certain extent, temporarily instilling the character’s ideology into the mind of reader. For that to happen, the yearning, his choice, his desires, must make sense, or at least the author has to make it seem like it makes sense.
I believe a strong and very close POV helps with this difficult task. It’s why I write in first person and not third. I deal with some pretty horrific human flaws and frailties in my novels. Hard for most people to comprehend and commiserate with. But if I can get the reader to live in the protagonist’s head, she’s more likely to understand where he’s coming from, to accept that’s what’s best, to hope and pray he achieves it, even yearn for it herself.