Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Character or Plot?

Recently, I was asked by a friend whether character or plot comes to me first.  My answer?  Definitely character.  Whether it's a flawed person viewed irredeemable by society, or someone who exudes so much life that you it uplifts your own, each in their own way is fascinating. To me, character creates the plot.

Let's suppose we have a doctor who feels his skills aren't on par with his colleagues and he allows his feelings of inadequacy to draw his attention away from a patient during surgery.  If he leaves an object inside the patient and is subsequently sued, we can build an entire plot from his negligence. 

But did the plot come first?  No, the character did, who was affected by the inner conflict of not being good enough.

People are the most interesting subjects in the world and to be able to create a hero, heroine or villain and learn what makes him or her tick, makes my day.