Unfortunately, my audience requires a happy ending so I must comply. The second problem is that I can't kill anyone. Kinda sucks all the fun right out of it.
Oh dear, no killing... umm, umm... I might be able to pull that off in a short... heh heh. Heck a garden gnome drowned in my flash fiction... apparently I can't do nobody dies, LOL. Although technically, garden gnomes may not need to breathe... the jury is out.
There's definitely something to this. After struggling with Jutoh for an hour, I ended up going back to my outline and realized that everything has fallen into place with my theme. It's like the characters and story magically (pun intended) came together. Not that I'm trying to shove a point down anyone's throat. Theme is important to me. I like to answer questions via my writing.For me, I think that the best way to use your theme when you're writing is as a source of inspiration. You don't try to force it, you don't try to tie everything to it. If you treat it as inspiration then it'll all end up tying back to that theme in the end.
There's definitely something to this. After struggling with Jutoh for an hour, I ended up going back to my outline and realized that everything has fallen into place with my theme. It's like the characters and story magically (pun intended) came together. Not that I'm trying to shove a point down anyone's throat. Theme is important to me. I like to answer questions via my writing.
For example, this whole concept of eternal love. What the heck is that, right? I don't believe in soul mates or true love or anything of that nature (unless we get spiritual/religious and I ain't going there). So this is more of me trying to figure out what someone would do to be together with their sweetheart literally forever. Of course, magic must be involved. The original concept is inspired by the horror that is Dracula, and when he finds Mina. So it gave me an idea and a ton of questions.
How far can I push these people? To what lengths are they willing to go through for love? To what lengths am I willing to go for love? How does this all tie in together? How can I make readers question these things? Maybe they won't. If they're anything like I am, they just want to curl up on the couch with an entertaining story and who cares about anything else. But I do like placing nuggets of philosophy in my stories. Not enough to bog it down, but more along the lines of several days later, huh...so that's what that was about! We just recently watched D'Jango Unchained and it left me thinking like that for days. Sometimes that's a pretty neat thing to come across in fiction.
Des, you're right in that love is abstract. I do believe that theme, in general, is. That's why my characters need specific story goals (related to theme), so they don't go chasing the end of rainbows.