Quiet Black Moments

Thematically, I should have written about Black Moments last week, during Holy Week, when we used black fabrics on our altars and lecterns and pulpits during the "Good" Friday service when we remembered the death of Jesus through the torture of the crucifixion. 

Instead, here it is Easter season, in the Christian church, when we celebrate with white paraments, spring flowers, and tell stories of Jesus' resurrection in our sanctuaries.

What are Black Moments? For the writer and the reader, it is the moment in the story, at about the 3/4 mark, when all seems lost. The protagonist is clinging onto the edge of the cliff, losing her grip and ready to fall to her death.  The antagonist has trapped the heroine securely within his lair and there is no way out. There is no hope. Our main character gives up. 

Black Moments are Big Moments. Dramatic Moments. Breath-Catching Moments. Also known as Dark Nights.

What if, like me, you're reading or writing more of a character-based story? It's a quieter story rather than a thriller or a horror or an adventure. 

What is the Pride & Prejudice Black Moment? (a spoiler lies ahead)

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When Lizzie finds out her foolish, younger sister has run off with a man, Lizzie's own chance, as well as that of her other three sisters, of securing love and an advantageous marriage are dashed hopelessly to the ground. They will none of them be able to marry to advantage because of this one sister's thoughtless act.

Although I can find the black moments in other writer's stories, trying to craft a good scene that is the black moment within my own story has had its challenges. 

Fortunately, I read Jami Gold's blog this week, Do Black Moments Need to Be Catastrophes?  In this blog, she talks about the quiet black moments. 

If you're interested in story structure in general or how to revise and/or edit your story once you're past the first draft, search through her website. Jami's blog is gold!