“Black Moment”

by
Donald L. Vasicek

Award-Winning Writer/Filmmaker Donald L. Vasicek/Turkey Creek Canyon in Colorado

The black moment in fiction writing is the moment in the short story, the novel, or the screenplay where the main character is challenged to overcome what has been his/her
Problem throughout the story. He/she either confronts it and beats it, or it defeats him/her.

How does your main character defeat and overcome this fear? Just before the villain (in fiction, a villain represents pure evil with no redeeming characteristics) or the antagonist (represents the opposition to the main character’s goal – can be a person, persons, or any of a million or more inanimate things, objects, or places) is about to defeat your main character, your main character should experience an epiphany. An epiphany is the sudden realization of something your main character has been trying to see throughout the story. This discovery will either push your main character over the top and your main character wins, or it causes your main character to withdraw into defeat.

In your story, you should have your main character striving to accomplish a goal. This goal should be set at about page 10 in the screenplay, and early on in a short story or novel, where you establish the goal of the main character. I call it the dramatic premise. The dramatic premise of the story sets in place what the main character will set out to achieve in the story.

In “To Kill a Mockingbird”, Harper Lee’s scintillating novel, the main character, Scout Finch, is challenged to learn about poking fun at a mentally-challenged neighbor. Her father, Atticus Finch, played by Gregory Peck in the movie, sets out to defend an African American man from being convicted of rape in a Southern and deeply racist community. Friends and Scout make fun of their mentally-challenged neighbor named Arthur (Boo) Radley even though Atticus tries to teach Scout how to be sympathetic regarding prejudice.

In the highly-charged story, Boo ends up saving Scout and her friends from the rape victim and her father, who are out for revenge, whom Atticus proved were lying during the trial. Even though Scout has a black cook, and she and her friends sit in the “colored balcony” at the trial, it isn’t until the rape victim’s father attacks Scout and her friend (the black moment in the story) and Boo saves them, that Scout realizes what life must be like for Boo.

She experiences an epiphany because of the attack. And she wins because she acquires the realization that that Boo is a human being and that hatred and prejudice should not sully her faith in human goodness.

Scout’s goal throughout the story is to learn and grow with respect to prejudice. And she accomplishes it through the black moment when she and her friend are attacked and Boo saves them. She experiences an epiphany at this point in time that causes her to learn and grow and to overcome the ignorance that held her back from becoming objective about the human condition.

Donald L. Vasicek
The Zen of Writing
http://www.donvasicek.com
dvasicek@earthlink.net

Passion, Writing, Screenwriting, and All Things

Aside

by

Donald L. Vasicek

What is passion? Merriam Webster in part defines passion as, “…the emotions as distinguished from reason…” By tapping into your passion, you will be able to write as you’ve never written before. And this, in turn, will work as a subliminal approach to promoting yourself and your writing.

Before you write one word, look deeply inside of yourself when an idea comes to mind about which you would like to write. You must use the who, what, where, when and why journalistic approach to identify that which is deep inside of yourself and relate it to the idea that has come to mind you want to write about. By utilizing this approach, you can identify your passion and write with ruthless abandon.

So, ask the questions.

What caused the idea to come to mind? Perhaps you saw a child weeping. She was holding her finger. It was bleeding. You wanted to reach out to her, but you were a stranger and her parents were there. You still wanted to help her with her fear and pain. Why?

You were inspired to write a short story about what you saw. Why? The inspiration came from deep within the wells of your heart and mind as you remembered when you got hurt when you were a kid and no one came to help you. This inspiration is your passion for helping children in need now because no one was there when you were a kid and needed help.

Identify when it happened. What were you doing? What caused you to get hurt? Why were you alone? Where were you? Why did you get hurt?

You get the picture.

This unique approach should also guide you to the use of your five senses. What did you taste at the time you were hurt? What did you see? What kind of sound or sounds were present? How did you feel (emotionally)? What were you touching? How did it feel? By using the five senses, it will help place you back in time so that you are able to more realistically write the story.

This approach results in passion and will enable you to write from your heart (emotion) and mind (reason), together. The power of combining your mind (reason) and heart(emotion) instead relying on one or the other, will bring out the essence of what you are writing about. This, in turn, will draw readers to you and your writing.

Donald L. Vasicek
Olympus Films+, LLC
Writing, Filmmaking, Consulting
http://www.donvasicek.com
dvasicek@earthlink.net
303-903-2103

“What is Your Concept of Love?”

by
Donald L. Vasicek
Writer/Filmmaker/Consultant
Olympus Films+, LLC
http://www.donvasicek.com
dvasicek@earthlink.net

"Unconditional Love is Universally Paramount."

“Unconditional Love is Universally Paramount.”


From where did all of that stuff about love come?
The newspaper? Television? All media?
The movies? A poem? A love story in
book form? A love story in short story form?
How your parents taught you about love, or
were you socialized or conditioned about
what love is? Your minister? Your priest?
Your friend? Perhaps the governor of your
state?

You get the point. Love comes from a host
of sources that make us what we are with
respect to love. Where love gets in the
way and causes pain, our emotional
intelligence also becomes involved.

Emotional intelligence? Yes, emotional
intelligence. Emotional intelligence
parallels emotional maturity. Emotional
maturity is how mature you act or
react when it comes to love. What
level of emotional intelligence/maturity
do you have?

Do you scream and holler at your loved one(s)
when you can’t have your way with them?
Do you stroke your lover’s face with the
tips of your finger? How is it that you learned
to make your life all about yourself when it
comes to wanting to possess the one you
love?

Are you capable of letting go? Can you give
up your workout so that you can watch the
kids because your husband is going to a
football game without thinking about yourself?

Can you take care of the kids when your wife
is going to a baby shower and your favorite
game is on television with love, and not
anger?

Can you look into your lover’s eyes and see
beyond the surface, see what is behind her/his
eyes, what’s going on in there?

How far will you go with love? What is love,
to you? Sex? A deep, passionate kiss.
A tap on the lips?

A love song? When you tell someone you
love them, what do you mean? What does
love mean to you? Think it’s authentic?

What is authentic love? Well, I’m jabbering
here. My point is, by going to the trouble
of learning all you can about love, you will
develop your concept of love. If you already
have a concept of love, you probably
wouldn’t be reading this. Whatever the case
may be, regardless of how long you have had
your concept of love, or you are seeking
your concept of love, you enhance your concept
of love by learning everything about yourself
and about love as you can. This approach to
love develops a concept of love that will
shelter and protect you if you lose the
one you love because you will know what
love is.

Donald L. Vasicek
Writer/Filmmaker?Consultant
Olympus Films+, LLC
http://www.donvasicek.com
dvasicek@earthlink.net