I’m not a fan of Ronald Reagan, but his speech in the aftermath of the Challenger disaster was one of the best I’ve ever heard. It struck the right tone in the aftermath of a national tragedy. More importantly, President Reagan provided the best response to any setback or defeat, “The future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted; the future belongs to the brave.”
Today, I added the following exchange in my manuscript (edited to remove spoilers):
“I want to know why you keep messing with…me!”
“Do I need a reason?”
“Did the Nazis need a reason for what they did?”
“They had reasons.”
“No, they didn’t…”
When I wrote about villains, I said, “We want to be able to comprehend a person’s villainy and the reasons for it. We don’t like characters who are evil for the sake of being evil. (We may never understand the source of Adolf Hitler’s genocidal madness, but that hasn’t stopped biographers and historians from churning out tens of thousands of pages trying to figure it out.)”
In real life, people do things without an apparent reason. They may act in ways that oppose their best interests. Do people (in fiction or real life) always need a reason for doing things?
Doge is officially dead. There are too many cats. We don’t need to see Justin Bieber’s mug shot again. The Internet needs a new meme. May I present the Reseda Park Squirrel.
The Mysterious Heart Maker of Reseda struck again. This time, it’s a plea to resurrect the Reseda Theater. I expressed my doubts about whether this theater should be reopened in its current form. I wrote, “The best thing that can be done with that theater is to tear it down and build something new. It’s better for the community to start fresh and entice new businesses than to cling on to an unsafe, unsightly landmark.”
What if I’m wrong? Can the past be saved?
I’ve spent the past few days rewriting a single scene in The Ghosts of Reseda High. It was a difficult scene to write. It was difficult emotionally. It was difficult in how it forced me to reevaluate my characters. But the rewrites took a scene that was sort of a throwaway and made it important. The revised scene takes some of my characters in a different direction and will make the rest of the story stronger. So, the amount of time and effort it took to make that scene right was worthwhile.
The most important scenes are the hardest to write. But all things of great value are the most difficult to do.