There are times to celebrate all the good things that have come our way. Times to rejoice, to laugh, to pray, to give thanks.

Some choose to spend their personal thanksgivings with others, while others prefer being alone in order to quietly contemplate the positive things in their lives.

What type is your character?

Your task is to create two lists: one to list the types of things to celebrate alone, the second those that are best shared in the company of others.

From the lists choose which is easiest for you to put into a scene. Remember that emotional details are important because readers want to walk in the mind and heart of the characters.

Write the story. Dialogue might be crucial here so as to best relay what the characters are thinking and feeling.

When you reread look for tells that allow you to see into your characters’’ emotions. If they are missing, add them in.

Have fun with this one.

Hit Refresh

Have you ever wanted to get a new start? Let’s say that a relationship that you’d like to develop began with you saying or doing something dumb. If you could get a do-over, what would change?

Think back to when you began your current career. If you could, would you go back and head in a different direction? If so, why? What choice would you make today?

Just as you might enjoy getting a fresh start, so will your protagonist.

Your task is to imagine a scene that went badly. Write it, in all its gory details. How does your character react to the choices she made? As she reflects, what plan of action does she come up with to change the trajectory of her poor decisions?

Write that as well. Readers will want to suffer with her as she analyzes what she did that’s upsetting and as she attempts to make things right. Details are crucial. Readers want to see her face turn red, hear the pace of her breathing change, feel her tears as she suffers.

When you are finished, reread looking for tension, conflict, reflection and change.

Have fun with this one.

Reflections or Resolutions?

Every year at this time we torture ourselves by setting goals to achieve in the coming year. We intend to stick to them, for at least a week, then chastise ourselves when we fail.

What if we chose to reflect over what we did or didn’t do over the past year? How much more helpful would that be?

For example, I could set a goal to lose ten pounds. Or I could revel in the fact that I lost fifteen! Which would be more inspiring? Which would encourage us to push forward?

Your task is to decide which to choose for yourself or for your protagonist. This might not be a long scene as it merely sets the stage for what is to come. Instead write about the thinking process that your character goes through.

A little dialogue would help. Imagine two characters interacting and evaluating each other’s process. That could create tension especially if one character regales the other over repeated failures despite setting the same resolutions every year.

Have fun with this one.