Lets try last week’s successful TB exercise on the Hartwhile gang’s opening situation…
Narkkid (I forget this name often and don’t much like it when I remember) opens the door to the front bay and a body rolls into the shop.
1) Therefore they determine to move the body across the street to the bar, but the girl wakes up and karates the gang to the ground.
2) Therefore they determine to call the police, but the girl runs away before the cops arrive.
3) Therefore they nudge the body outside to let her revive on her own, but she lays in the street all day unmoving, but alive-seeming.
4) Therefore they drag her into the office to revive her, but an important customer arrives to distract them and she’s gone when they get back.
5) Therefore Narkkid calls an old friend to cart the body away, but the police arrive before the friend.
6) Therefore they put her in the customer waiting room to let her finish sleeping it off, but the ‘hospital’ goons arrive to take the girl away seemingly against her will claiming she’s an escaped patient.
7) Therefore…but, her boyfriend arrives to help her home.
8) Therefore…but, it begins to pour outside and they invite her back in.
One of the compelling notions of the Therefore…But exercise is that it neatly encapsulates both the protagonist’s and the antagonist’s forces within the story. Everything in the therefore portion belongs to the protagonist taking action based on the situation. Everything in the but portion belongs either to the antagonist or the author.
I’m thinking though that if you’re careful you could invert this relationship too. Or that this relationship inverts itself in the last act of the story. Eventually the antagonist is reacting to the increasing capability of the protagonist.
302 words on day 959