One of my favorite fan fic genres are the slice-of-life ones where the characters just have a pleasant day. They wake up, have a lovely breakfast, indulge in cozy hobbies, interact with their healthy relationships, and end with a positive reflection of their current life.
What I’m saying is, not everyone who writes fanfic has those skills translate to writing good original character fiction.
I’m struggling with soggy/saggy/baggy middle right now. Progress is finally happening, but it’s pretty slow.
All the advice (and it’s very good advice!) is to cause problems. Throw in some red herrings, add difficulties, embarrass the heck out of your protagonist.
And I…do not want to.
My protagonists are precious to me! Why would I want to cause them pain? I want them to have nice, happy lives and resolve all their problems (namely, murders) easily.
Now I know, I know. Without struggle you don’t have an interesting story. So I will make their lives more interesting. But I’m going to whine and complain the whole time.
After all, that’s the writerly process, right?
For my writer friends, what’s your favorite trick for getting through the swamp of the center?