Friday, May 25, 2012


Passion. The word can apply to writing. It can apply to anything you feel is important to you.

But it is the title of a season #2, episode 17 of Buffy. Written by Ty King and directed by Michael E. Gershman, it was one of the more emotion-filled episodes of that season. It was building up to something.

You might recall when Angel lost his soul and began to target people around Buffy--her, and her best friend, Willow, and then Giles. This is the one where Angel kills Jenny Calendar, sets things up in Giles' place to look as though they are about to have a romantic interlude and he finds Miss Calendar dead in a bed of roses.

Whenever I find myself at a loss for creating some sort of emotions in my characters, when I have trouble showing the conflict, and yet underlying that the love between two people is there even when neither speaks of it. There is always Buffy to the rescue. Joss Whedon's show has always been one of my favorites, but its also one to put on when I feel I need a boost to my writing. Joss is able to take two characters and make them so real, the situation real, like the "talk" between Buffy and her mom. Or when Giles goes to exact revenge on Angel, and Buffy gets there in the nick of time, but because the place is on fire--and Angel points out that Giles might burn--she has to save him and let Angel go. Giles says to her, "This wasn't your fight!" But you know it was, really.
Buffy hits him. "What are you trying to do? Get yourself killed?"
"I can't go on with out you!" Buffy tells him and they crumple swept up in their raw emotions.

We need passion in our writing, but we also need the emotional pendulum. We need to pull the reader into these emotions, get them worked up, weep when someone dies, or when things seem lost. It's tough to do. It's easy to write a book and set sail on calm seas, but if you don't show more than just conflict, if you don't show love, hate, jealousy, and justify it in the end, your reader won't really care either.


  1. This is an excellent post, Lorelei.

  2. I'm a big fan of Buffy, and that particular moment between Buffy and Giles is one of my very favourites of the entire series.

  3. I agree. They had to have an emotional thing that holds them to the larger cause of the whole series.


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