Although this is a bit of an oversimplification, let's just say that I needed to have my character fall in love. This character had already met the man he was to fall in love with, but the chemistry wasn't quite there yet.
I had them couple go on multiple dates.
The seducer tried his best moves.
Even though more scenes were being added to the story, the scene, the scene of change, wasn't taking place. My character got closer and closer to the change, and then, POOF!, he was on the other side, right at the already-written climax, having made the change already.
I tried to write forwards. I tried to write backwards. But, as close as I got to the change, I never figured out a way to show it.
Wait. What did I just say? Oh yeah, show. I wasn't able to show it. One of the rules I had set for myself with Bread was that I was going to show as much as I possibly could and tell as little as I possibly could. (This was a reaction to my past fiction, and to the work of Virginia Woolf, which has a ton of beautiful telling.)
So, there I am, show-show-showing like a madman, but I couldn't show any character change. Weeks passed. Yes, Michelle, yes, Scott, I still only have one more scene to write, now stop pestering me!
I asked myself, "What does character change look like?"
I can imagine it in a movie. It's that scene where the camera zooms in on a character, let's call her Academy Award nominee Gabourey Sidibe for convenience, and we watch her as absolutely nothing happens. Did you catch it? Did you notice the internal change? No? Oh yeah, it's internal.
So, I'm wondering at you all if it's possible to show character change. Have you ever read or written a scene that actually shows it? Or, could it be that the best we can do is approach the change without actually getting to it? Now, naturally we have alternatives. We can tell. That's a personal favorite of mine. Or, we can have the change manifest in some tangible action that reflects the change. And, maybe that's good enough. But, I found myself ever so frustrated that I couldn't catch the exact moment.
Have you managed to show the time of internal character change? Is the suicidal leap the decision, or is it the action immediately after the decision?