Method writing and tragic love

Some actors are Method actors. Take a personal experience that created an emotional response similar to what your character feels, and draw on it. This was very difficult to accomplish as a young college student. I was supposed to play Nora of A DOLL'S HOUSE, a woman with a domineering, degrading husband, in a scene with a tender, kind man who truly loves her. A fantastic scene in a wonderful play, and yet as a nineteen-year-old unmarried girl, I couldn't draw on any life experience like this. I had to draw from my own limited experiences in love and extrapolate what it would be like if such things happened.

Now I wonder if I need to be a Method writer. Is there such a thing? Can I create such a thing? To some extent, all writers are Method writers - we draw on our own experiences to inform our characters and stories. But this problem needs greater resolution.

Tam has to be worth it. Kancethedrus and Alesia don't do what they do for Wynter. Alesia never even meets Wynter, and Kance isn't exactly her biggest fan. They do it for Tam, because Tam loves Wynter with an obsessive, powerful love that goes beyond all reason, all sanity. That makes Tam a little less positive a protagonist. We need to make Tam worth their sacrifice, particularly for Alesia. If we understand why Alesia does what she does, it makes Tam worth it. Maybe.

So I find myself remembering a long time ago when I loved a man. He wasn't the Great Love of My Life, but I fell in love with him all the same and despite my best efforts. I liked to pretend it was just a crush, just a little fantasy. But it wasn't. I fell in love with him, and he didn't want me. Didn't hate me, liked me just fine as a person... but didn't want me. I accepted that with dignity and grace. But it didn't stop me loving him. That's not how love works.

And I realized that when I saw him again. How I wanted to be around him, to talk to him, laugh with him, because it was enough just to be near him. It was as though he was the fire in the room and I needed to be near him or I would be cold. At the same time, I recognized that nothing had changed. That it was dangerous for me to be with him, to let myself fall into him as I had before. Because it let my mind go to places it couldn't go, imagining things that would never happen. While I wanted to be with him, I knew he was dangerous for me, setting myself up for another heartbreak, and all without him knowing.

That's Alesia. If anything, her pride is stronger than mine. That's why she fights with Tam all the time, in his obsessive quest to find the mysterious Wynter. She can't get too close to the fire, or he'll burn her up, and all without understanding it. The story of Dreadmire is the story of unrequited love.

The problem, then, is Kancethedrus. Because I don't know how men react to unrequited love. I've written about it many times, but I don't know how they live it from inside. Do they know it's hopeless, or do they keep pressing onward? In my experience, they never give up until smacked in the head with something heavy, and even then they'll come back bloody and staggering, because someone told them A Man Fights For What He Wants. Which is true, and at the same time tragic.

Hell, in the end all love is hopeless, all love is tragic. Every love ends with a breakup or one of them dies. Every love story ends in tears. If my work has any meaning, any theme, that is it.

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