Monday, May 23, 2011

Test Your Might

I'm just going to come right out and say it.  I LOVE FIGHT SCENES.  Not just action scenes, not just chase scenes, but good, old fashioned, knuckles smashing battles.  When I started writing, almost every piece of work I ever created had a fight scene nudged I there.  So today, I thought it would be great to talk about my favorite part of the writing process and how it ties into the Agent M series.

    My inspiration for writing climatic and otherwise epic battles began with watching professional wrestling.  And yes…  I know the matches are scripted, predetermined, and otherwise fake.  However, so is the rest of Hollywood and practically every film we’ve ever watched.  But, I digress.  Wrestling matches did one thing and it did it very well; tell a story.  I was mesmerized by the process.  Everything about it seemed so real (from an emotional standpoint).  While I don’t follow professional wrestling as I did as a child, I cannot deny the impact it had on my life.  Until of course, another man showed up and gave my fighting foundation a swift roundhouse kick.

    Martial arts movies are incredible.  And no, I’m not talking about “Americanized” martial arts (Steven Segal anybody?), I mean real, gritty, fierce combat.  Enter Jackie Chan, a world renowned actor and martial artist.  Many of his films have one supportive and major foundation, great fight scenes.  I remember reading an article somewhere about Jackie’s specific style of fighting used in films and he replied with something very interesting, “Nobody ever waits to take a punch.”  As soon as I heard that, I thought that was brilliant and also very true.  You can go on Youtube and watch kids, teenagers, or even adults brawling in the streets and the statement stands true.  Now any time I watch a fight in films, that is the first thing I look for and as soon as I see someone with their defenses down and chin up, then I groan.

    With these two elements taking root, my fight scene development and writing career started to grow.  Almost every time I began to write a story, the very first scene on my mind was a fight scene of some sort.  My short lived fan-fiction career completely revolved around fighting so I was right at home.  Hearing praise from some of my fans cemented my confidence.  I enjoyed every second of every chapter I wrote (albeit being a pretty poor representation of my work now) and when you’re doing something you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.  To me, that is the most important factor.  If you’re not having fun while writing, then how much fun do you think your audience will have reading it?

    Writing the battles in Agent M: Project Mabus seemed so satisfying I almost thought I had done something wrong because it felt too good to be true.  When I hit that point, I knew I was doing something right.  There are a lot of action segments and fight scenes in Project Mabus because that is what I do best and the best thing you can do is accentuate your best abilities while taking focus away from areas you struggle in.  Funny side note, I asked my fiancé after she read the first draft of my novel if there was enough action because I thought it was a little light.  Her response made my night.  She said it was like watching an action movie at some points and that she couldn’t turn pages quick enough.  To me, there is no greater compliment I could have received.


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