Novel Conflict: The Fuel Of Your Story

Stoke your fiction

Advice for a successful novel

This looks like a great post to read and share, even if you never will write a novel during #NaNoWriMo. All great fiction and nonfiction books need conflict and tension or readers stop reading. I am a great lover of the literary arts, but also a reader of biography, history and nonfiction.

#NaNoWriMo means National Novel Writing Month. I have won twice, writing over 50,000 words and drafting two novels in my Dog Leader Mystery series.

If you aspire to write, read this and share.


Nanowrimo cover

Bob Mayer

Conflict is the fuel that keeps your story going. Conflict revels your character and draws the reader closer. It gives the reader a reason to keep turning the page. Without conflict, your idea cannot be translated into story.

Conflict keeps a story going and reveals much about your characters. Conflict is the gap between expectation and the actual result. There are 3 levels of conflict for your characters:

  • inner (inside the character) In many cases inner conflict occurs when a person has a disagreement between values he or she holds to be important. By adjusting a character’s circumstances, you can develop internal conflict.
  • personal (between characters)
  • universal/societal (characters versus fate/God/the system)

You have to consider what your main character faces on each of these levels.

There are five major sources of conflict for people (although you can probably come up with more):

  • Money
  • Sex
  • Family
  • Religion
  • Politics

Nanowrimo coverKeep these…

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