Sometimes it feels like we walk through life half-asleep much of the time and then something reminds us we’re alive. What wakes us up?
What wakes you up?
For me it’s all kinds of things. Sometimes it’s just a sentence I’ve written or one I've read. Sometimes something someone says. Martial Arts did when I was doing those. Various passions. Issues I care about sometimes will wake me up. People wake me up ETC…
When it comes to fiction, I come back to an idea I’ve heard expressed different ways but one that Robert Olen Butler expressed most succinctly for me: the moment to moment experience of our characters, if expressed with specificity and detail, makes the reader experience that moment. SO we, as authors, must be awake to the moment our characters are living through and express that. Those moments, linked together, will give our reader an experience.
I do think a lot of times that denouement is our characters coming awake in a manuscript, being aware of something in such a way that it brings their story to a natural conclusion.