*In storytelling and in life
In a manuscript, a writer pays attention to tension. Keeping a certain level, which even when reduced must never leave the narrative, is crucial.
It’s a curious thing that in daily life most of us want to reduce tension. We want things to go smoothly and without worries. When something stresses our veneer of peacefulness, we yearn to “get back our lives,” as if our real lives are a calm sea with a lovely sailboat gliding over sweet-smelling waters.
But when we pick up a book, or start a session of movie watching, we’d quickly drop that if the tension they exude doesn’t grip us by the back of the neck.
I watch my cats as they invent chases with nonexistent entities because their lives do not include the kind of stressors feral cats and wild animals must contend with. Their make-believe play hunt and chase is something akin to what we choose as stimulating entertainment.
I doubt people who are in the midst of real-life mega-stressors would do that. So called thrillers are for the fortunate among us. Tension-filled stories are what our domesticated species made to round up life.
Just musing here, as I contemplate amping up tension in my WIP.