This is something I’ve heard many times – when writing a novel (or a short story) the reader should be the participant in the most interesting day(s) of the protagonist’s life. It almost makes me want to write a series of short chapters which are literally the 24 hours which end up being the most interesting days of a “normal” person’s life.
You can only say what is an interesting day based on your past. So for a newborn baby – that is certainly the most interesting day of their life. The next day when they get swaddled the first time… it’s the newest and most interesting day of their life! But ask an eighteen year old if the first day of their senior year is the most interesting day of their life… probably not. Even “first day of school” has become mundane. So the only way to understand the most interesting day is to look at them chronologically.
I’m all about skipping the pre-walking memories, there is a language deficiency I’m not sure I could overcome to keep in the “mind” of a pre-toddler child. At this point in my life, I’m too lingual. I’m thinking an outline like this:
- First day a toddler is taken to another child’s house
- First trip to a museum (~7)
- The day they learn the difference between boys and girls (~9)
- The first plane trip (~11)
- First date (~16)
- Moving to college (~18)
- Taking first solo vacation (~22)
- Marriage Proposal (~26)
- Rehearsal dinner
And so on. I think one of the fun challenges would be growing up in tone and vocabulary throughout. There are also some notable events I skipped. As interested as my first day of a job was – it was that different than the first day of school. At least not my first, part time job. And then the next jobs had that cushion of experience and as interesting as they might have been, were they most interesting day of my life?
I would love ideas on what are the most interesting days of your life? The ones where you found yourself in the moment thinking “wow, who would have ever imagined I would be here?”
1 thought on “Writing: The most interesting day”
SUCH A cool idea. but i wouldn’t do “milestones” … I’d suggest doing RANDOM days in that persons life that end up being significant only in hindsight. e.g. that day on the play ground when they learn to skip rope (later to be seen as a love for atheltics) in class when the obnoxious boy walks in (who later ends up being a partner) … that day at work when the boss said something TERRIBLE (which later ends up inspiring a job change) … so that the themes of each previous day tie to the next one a few years later and are landmarks to understanding this person’s character, motivations, etc.
BUT AWESOME IDEA>
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