Fear, focus, and the future. Here, C.M. Humphries writes about whatever.
There's nothing worse than a bad critique. As a writer, more people are willing to correct your work than actually read it, and one of the most common comments you might see at the bottom of a manuscript is, "I don't understand why X would do Y. It's not logical."
While it may already be a fallacy to expect absolute logic in a work of fiction, there's another reason such a critique is presumptuous at best: Decisions are not based on logic; they're based on emotion.
Throughout life, I've always tried to think logically or from a financial standpoint. Will Y leave me in a better standing or hungry? The thing is, I always assumed rational decisions were much better than emotional ones. In fact, many people suggest you should never make a decision when you're feeling "emotional".
As it turns out, if you're not emotional, you cannot make a decision.
A neuroscientist by the name of Antonio Damasio discovered a strange similarity between his subjects as he studied people who were literally emotionless. That is, the sphere of their brain that computed and generated emotions was either inactive, damaged, or nonexistent.
His subjects were as normal as you and me, but they were unable to process emotions. As it turned out, they were always unable to make decision. They could make a suggestion of what to due based on tried-and-true facts, but they couldn't even choose what to eat or drink without great deliberation. Furthermore, the same concept was applied to negotiations: You can make a logical argument, but you seal the deal with the emotional touch.
Now back to fiction.
Myself included, we sometimes question a plot point based on the surrounding facts in the story. Why would a character do this or that when other options were available? However, with the recent discovery in neuroscience, it seems one of my rules of thumb can, indeed, make a story more realistic.
Base a character's decisions on emotionas rather than rationality. Whenever someone suggests your character made an illogical move, just smile and be proud of yourself.
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Fear, focus, and the future. C.M. Humphries talks about writing, horror, and whatever.