40 Days of 3 Questions – Day 19

Welcome to 40 Days of 3 Questions!

For the next few weeks, meet here every morning with a notebook or document to answer three questions about writing, about your status quo as a writer, or about the writing life. You can answer briefly and go about your day, or you can use this as a warm up exercise before your regular writing schedule. Whatever works for you, works for me.

Day 19 Questions 

  1. In your current project, is any character (other than a killer) keeping a secret?
  2. How does this secret affect the plot or the character’s arc?
  3. How are you using this secret to create drama?

You may post answers in comments or keep your thoughts private–your choice!

And here is today’s pretty picture:

VCCA bird 1

“a little bird told me”

8 thoughts on “40 Days of 3 Questions – Day 19

  1. My novel is a mystery, so every character has a secret they are trying hard to keep. Most of their secrets involve the murdered character and, of course, as those secrets are revealed it gives each of them a motive. As each one is exposed, the drama intensifies and puts the protagonist in more danger.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. In your current project, is any character (other than a killer) keeping a secret? Yes, of course.
    How does this secret affect the plot or the character’s arc? The secret and her inner turmoil with it is the protagonist.
    How are you using this secret to create drama? The whole damn story revolves around protecting it, I think. Maybe not.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. In your current project, is any character (other than a killer) keeping a secret? Yes. A secondary character is being secretive about her past and what led her to be a cop. The female protagonist is not being entirely forthcoming about her past in the DA’s office.

    How does this secret affect the plot or the character’s arc? The secondary character’s secret is driving a sub-plot and her journey from a raw rookie to a good cop. The female protagonist’s past is leading her to make choices that are not the best.

    How are you using this secret to create drama? By hiding her past, the secondary character occasionally makes decision that put her at odds with the male protagonist – plus he senses she’s hiding something. For the female protagonist, her secret leads her to make assumptions and decisions that put her sort-of at odds with the male protagonist, as well as her boss, and will eventually put her in physical peril.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. ***In your current project, is any character (other than a killer) keeping a secret?
    I try to give the killer and all the other suspects secrets. I hit upon that a few books ago and added it to my template that gives them all reasons they are suspected, reasons they couldn’t have done it, motivation, and the secret (which is sometimes also one of the above).

    ***How does this secret affect the plot or the character’s arc?
    That’s the major part of my plotting, uncovering everyone’s secrets until all the things the killer is hiding are revealed.

    ***How are you using this secret to create drama?
    Yes, I try to give hints that there ARE secrets long before I reveal them.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Secrets, secrets everywhere. I do a liberal sprinkle in the first half of my WIP. Then I spend the rest of my time sorting out the secrets related to the murder(s), spurious secrets that are red herrings and secondary plot secrets. Because I’m a pantser and I’m 34,000 words into my story, I’m still sprinkling! I use the secrets to create drama and obfuscate. I’ve yet to determine which are which. But I’m having fun leading the reader in a variety of directions. at this point.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. In your current project, is any character (other than a killer) keeping a secret? No, but it sounds like fun. Maybe the answer should be Not yet.
    How does this secret affect the plot or the character’s arc? I don’t know yet.
    How are you using this secret to create drama? Again, I don’t know, but I like the idea. Could give an interesting element.

    I don’t read the other answers until I write my own. In reading today’s answers, it seems like an abundance of secrets is the norm. Something else I’ve learned from these questions! Thank you, Ramona.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. 1. Everyone has secrets—affairs, coverups of violence, unhealthy alliances, etc. The secrets could provide a motive for murder.
    2. My protagonist sets out to identify others’ secrets, even though she has a few herself. By the end she knows more about herself and has identified surprising aspects of others she thought she knew well.
    3. Some scenes are built around the revelation of a secret. However, at times, the protagonist puts together clues for herself.

    Like

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