Do-over

Our characters are not perfect. Just like us, they make mistakes.

Sometimes the mistakes are little, like forgetting to buy corn at the store. Sometimes the mistakes are huge, like accidentally saying something insulting about the boss just as she’s walking through the door.

These are the things that our character might want to replay. Next time he goes to the store he’ll make a list. The next time she is angry with the boss, she’ll keep her thoughts to herself.

Your task is to make a list of things that your character would like to do over. Go beyond the trivial. Trivial things are important, but they usually don’t alter lives. Huge mistakes, however, can cost a job, get a person kicked out of an apartment or cause serious injury to someone when distracted while driving.

Try to come up with five major things that are plausible for your character.

Narrow your list down to the top two. Next to each, write what your character would do differently in order to change the outcome. Maybe the outcome isn’t changed; maybe it’s what the character does to make amends.

Finally your task is to write a scene to an existing story in which your character reflects on an action then does something to change the eventual outcome.

Have fun with this one.

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