pond live

Creating Conflict

Or, as I call it, causing ~drama~

The key that keeps readers interested in your story is conflict. If nothing is at stake, then there is not much to see. So, here are a few general tips to cause some ripples in the ponds of your characters’ lives.

“Prioritizing”: Your character has two main motives that they have been working towards, but they end up in a situation where they have to sacrifice one to save the other. Depending on how easy or hard the choice is, this range from “disappointing” to “devastating” in the sacrifice. 

Character Flaws: As I talked about in my cornerstones post, every character should have a flaw. Flaws are flaws and not strengths for a reason- they get in the way. Have your character have a moment of weakness, where they lose their values and give in to temptation or get carried away.

 In addition: Even without their key flaws, characters can sometimes just… be wrong. Maybe they miscalculated. Maybe they misunderstood. Maybe they made the wrong guess. They did what everyone does: They Done Messed Up, and now they have to deal with the result.

Liar, Liar: Someone is lying, or even keeping secrets, and now, it’s causing problems. They can’t go forward without the truth, or worse, they are making mistakes due to a warped perception of the situation.

Draw backs: Let the good things come at a cost. One key rule for worlds with magic or superpowers is that all power should come at cost- equal to or greater than the power itself. 

“Because I Said So”: Don’t forget, there are other characters in your story, and even if they are on the protagonist’s own side, they are not always going to just merrily go along with whatever the protagonist said. Maybe they disagree. Maybe they are powerful enough to get in the protagonist’s way, and maybe it’s that important to them that they try. If fighting an enemy is hard, fighting a friend is harder.

Take It Back: Your character makes a decision that seems right at the time. Maybe it was the obvious choice, or maybe it was taking a risk. But uh-oh…now there are unforeseen consequences. 

Or, the opposite…

Decisions, Decisions: Maybe your character has to make a decision where there is not an immediately obvious choice. Make sure that both/all the options have both positive and negative possible or certain outcomes. There is no obvious right or wrong choice. Bonus, it’s funny to watch the fandom debate it later. 

Strip Them Down: Remove your character’s greatest strength. For whatever reason, your character’s most valuable asset is not available, and now, they have to live without it. Bonus mode- it would be really, really helpful if they had it right now!

Or, do the opposite…

Boss Fight: Maybe, instead of your protagonist getting weaker, it’s your antagonist that gets stronger. Strengthen the opposition and see if your characters can adapt to survive, or if they lack what it takes. 

Change of Plan: The rules of the game have changed. This can mean different things depending on your story. They could be literal rules, or more general. Think Hunger Games- did I say two tributes? I meant one, after all. Fight to the death now, please.

Amplify the Emotions: … And the results that come with. People do crazy things in the heat of the moment. You can’t think straight when all you can do is feel. Blinded by anger, sadness, or even joy, your character makes a bad choice. 

*Pile It On: You know what a full plate needs? Even more stuff. Your character is already juggling, trying to balance a variety of responsibilities. So add one more ball. Do they crash and burn immediately? Does it take a while? Do they succeed?  Any which way, the stress is high.

*Note: this one can be difficult on the author, too. Make sure that with all these plot lines, you’re not losing track, yourself.

“Murphy’s Law”: Simply stated, this is a plot tool that says, “whatever can go wrong, will.” I’m just going to say right away… be careful with this one. It’s really frustrating for your audience to watch the characters fail or lose or face misfortune over and over and over again. It makes it feel like nothing will ever come out of rooting for them, so you may as well give up now. Murphy’s Law can be great in the proper proportions, please, let your characters have some victories, or there’s no point to it.

And hey, don’t forget about your inner conflicts. You never know when those are going to have the opportunity to cause trouble. 

Give ‘em hell, kids!*

***disclaimer: you do not have to be a kid to give them hell.

~Penemue

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Preference: Spending the Summer Together

Harry Potter:

- Bringing him to your favourite places to go in summer, like the lake beside your home.

- Hanging out at the muggle mall 

- And trying on the most ridiculous clothing items

- “Show it to Neville, and he can imagine Snape in it!”

- “Oh pleaseeee, Harry, just use magic to make me feel less hot!” 
  “ No, (Y/n), you know I can’t.”
  “ Fine, try saying this tongue twister. While facing the air-con. Wingardium              leviosa.”
  “ Winga- (Y/n)!”

- Going to the Dursley’s just for entertainment

- “Bringing a filthy friend of yours, Harry?” 

- Then wiping your sweat all over Dudley and saying, “Oopsie, now you’re filthy, too.”

- Having a competition on who can drive the Dursleys insane first

- Might have some help from Hedwig. Dursleys hate Hedwig

- Bringing Hedwig on a picnic

- Even Hedwig ships you two

Ron Weasley:

- Spending the summer at the Weasleys, of course. 

- Mrs Weasley stuffing you with desserts. Pies, cakes, everything.

- “Hey, (Y/n), wanna do some shoppings?”
   “Ginny! She’s my girl friend! Not yours!”

- “ Ron, I think it’s haunted around here.”
   “ Why?”
   “ (Y/n), dear. This is a family of wizards.”
   “ Oh, wait. Yeah.”

- Playing harmless little pranks with the twins

- “(Y/n)! My socks are frogs!”
   “ What, oh, HAHAHAHAHA! Oh, Ronald, I did it because I love you.”

- Making Ron flower crowns

- Rides on the enchanted car late at night just around the house, so that no one will see you.

- Answering Mr Weasley’s questions about Muggles

- Family game nights

- “ What that chess always there? George! No cheating!”
   “ It’s Fred!”

Hermione Granger:

- Summer reading lists

- Staying up late at night reading under blankets

- Getting too hot and sweaty inside and immediately going for a swim

- Getting Hermione really into late night swims

- “(Y/n), I read that it’s really good to swim at night. It can -”
   “IT’S FUN!”

- “Hey, I just learnt this new hairstyle. Can I try it on you?”
   “Honey, you look. Stunning.”

- Cooking together

- Mainly making refreshing dished for summer

- Making a bucket list together

- Taking tons of polaroids 

- Turns out the polaroids are moving portraits polaroids

- Making her breakfast

- Failing completely

- Hermione making you a successful, delicious breakfast at last

- Hanging out with Crookshanks 

Draco Malfoy:

- Him getting you accessories, clothing, basically everything you wanted

- Or actually everything you so much as glanced at 

- “Draco, how did you I want these? They go so well with my summer dress!”
  “You looked at it the other day, so I got them.”
  “I can’t thank you enough for it!”
  “Just thank me by wearing those with your summer dress.”

- Dressing him up in your clothes because only you can do it 

- He always looks at you with a lovey-dovey smile which Ron calls ‘the Melt-foy face’

- Him calling Crabbe and Goyle, say, every two hours when you do something cute, or actually just normal things.

- Actual teenage girl that is Draco Malfoy

- “Oh my god, Goyle, (Y/n) made me wear her swim wear today. Adorable, isn’t she?”

- Getting him into Muggle movies

- His favourite movie is the Addams Family

- Getting him to wear bright colours clothes

- Getting drunk together

- Rocking out to Nirvana and having dance parties

George Weasley:

- Also spending the summer at the Weasleys

- Trying out so many sweets that you two got into a sweet coma

- And of course, Mario Cart

- “Aw, dang it, you can’t cheat with magic, can you?”
   “Haha, Weasley, you’re on your own.”

-  Wii-fit

- “Hey, (Y/n), wanna play tennis?”
  “Sure, but it’s raining.”
  “We’ve got Wee.”
  “What? Oh, its Wii.”

- Playing tennis in the rain anyway

- George wanting to cheat at tennis but accidentally set off some fireworks

- “I’ve been wanting to do that.”

- Eating pies that makes you make animal noises

- One of you sounding like an elephant and the other sounding like a duck for the rest of the day 

- Miraculously communicating and on one having any idea on what a duck quack means

Fred Weasley:

- Since he’s so dang tall, you get piggy back rides all the time

- He trips and you two fall into a body of water. Either a pool, a lake or a pond.

- “Fred, you created a pond in your living room.”
   “Mum’s gonna kill you!”
   “Shut up, Ron!”

- Purposely trying to confuse you on which one is George and which is Fred

- You can always being able to tell though

- Looking angelic in front of the Weasley parents and they adore you because they think you can ‘tame’ Fred

- Only the Weasley children know you’re not that ‘tamed’ yourself

- You’re a little trickster just like Fred

- It was actually your idea to levitate the house

- Also the time where all the chairs know how to talk

- Broom stick rides, of course

- Water balloon fights

- Getting him into the youtube world

- Pewdiepie is his favourite 

Neville Longbottom:

- Hiking together

- Picking fruits on the way. Berries, apples, all kinds of fruits

- You’re an expert in climbing trees and it always scares Neville because he’s afraid that you’ll slip and fall 

- He gives you bouquets of wild flowers all the time

- Eating tons of ice creams

- Staying up late conversations

- Counting stars at night to fall asleep

- You dyed your hair (Y/f/c) and change your hairstyle

- Neville loves your new hairstyle so much that he kept touching your hair. 

- Maybe when he puts an arm on your shoulder, he’ll play with it; He’ll twirl the ends of your hair on his finger when he’s not paying attention, etc

- Somedays he’ll be really shy around you and blush at anything you do, and somedays he’ll be really confident, depending on his mood

- Getting him into scuba diving 

- “Oh come on, Neville, it’ll be fun!”
   “There might be sharks, (Y/n).”

- “This is the most fun I’ve ever got! I should’ve done this earlier!” 

- Going to carnivals

- Loving the ferris wheel 

- He got you a large stuff toy from a booth

Scandinavian tales and creatures

Sjörån (watchers of lakes) guard lakes and ponds and all that lives within them. Unlike their sisters, skogsrån and skeppsrån, sjörån are much more protective and vicious. They will not tolerate anyone who tries to catch their fish or otherwise disturb the waters, and they will not hesitate to drag fishermen down into the murky depths of their lake to drown them.