At lunch yesterday with a bunch of fellow writers, there was something we all agreed on- the tendency to call bull—– on some books, screen plays, movies, and/or TV shows. Have you ever watched or read something and said something like that? Did the unrealistic action irritate you?
As a kid, I knew that a pistol didn’t hold endless rounds. I knew that cars couldn’t jump like in the movies, and if they did, things would be broken when they landed. If you get hit by a bullet, you could die and it left a nasty hole. It hurt to get hit in a fight. If you fell through a glass window, you got cut and it made you bleed.
In a writer’s world, you have to make things BELIEVABLE. If it makes you roll your eyes as the writer, then chances are that the audience will too. Even John Wayne had to stand behind a tree and RELOAD his guns! When Bruce Willis walked across broken glass, he cut his feet! I am so tired of seeing guns with endless bullets, cars that can jump and land without damage, guys that walk away from fights with no cuts or bruises, and other incidents that make you want to yell oh BULL—-!
In my first novel, Wild Hearted, I have my heroine hiding behind a tree as one of the bad guys takes potshots at her. She COUNTS the shots and listens for the reload. The shots she makes with her gun are POSSIBLE. If this bores you, then I apologize but I have a no bull policy in my books.
I can guarantee in my books some things WILL happen: characters will be injured during fist fights, guns will be reloaded, vehicles will be damaged if they jump and/or crash, and my heroine will NOT win every fight. She WILL give it her all and if she goes down, she will go down swinging.
I know that supernatural/paranormal creatures, sci-fi inhabitants, and superheroes have abilities that us puny humans don’t. I don’t expect them to act like humans. I do expect that there be some sort of limitations and that the limitations APPLY to their world. I don’t want to be one of THOSE writers who you know you will yell the catch phrase, or as a writer I know does, THROW the book!!
I want my adventures to be believable in that world, make my readers think, to have a hidden message without being preachy, and for my readers to have FUN!
Okay, off my soapbox for now and thanks for letting me ramble on about, well BULL—-!
until next time,