Monday, September 8, 2008

Marriage of Convenience

I have started another works-in-progress. I've decided to use the hook device, marriage of convenience. To layer-in the conflict, I am consulting the non-fiction, self-help book, Marriage on the Rock, by Jimmy Evans.

I love this book!

Early on in my marriage, my husband listen to the author of this book at a conference. When he came home, our relationship changed...for the better! This book contains many of the elements my husband heard. (If you know a newly-wed or a marriage in trouble, this is the book to recommend)

For my intent and purpose, I'm using different chapters to help me establish problems between the hero and heroine. For starters, as human beings there are certain deep needs, which only God can meet. Here they are:

Four Basic Needs

  • Acceptance

  • Identity

  • Security

  • Purpose

You can set up your Hero/Heroine to want their Hero/Heroine to meet one of these basic needs. This will create instant conflict because as humans we will never meet these deep needs from another human. These needs can only be met by God.

To increase the conflict between Hero/Heroine there are certain needs, which women need men to meet and vice versa. As you read the following needs, imagine in your own life when this need was not met. Remember how it felt and then draw from that experience in developing your characters.

Women's Needs

  • Security (Finances, Relationship)

  • Non-Sexual Affection

  • Open Communication

  • Leadership

Men's Needs

  • Honor

  • Sex

  • Kindred Fellowship

  • Domestic Support

So for example, let's say your Heroine is a sassy, smart-mouth woman who meets the Hero and she needs him to lead her to safety. However, he's made some mistakes in mapping out their survival. The heroine can't stand the fact he's messing up. She dishonors him by insulting him with caddy comments and then she takes over the leadership role. Of course, as time progresses they become friends, meeting his need for kindred fellowship. As the bond continues, she eases up on her sassy mouth and during their discussion her need for open communication is met. She then relinquishes control, he leads them to safety, and they live happily-ever-after.

You use what they need most from the opposite sex and create conflict by withholding it from them. As the relationship continues, add what they need from each other to the mix. Of course, the crux is when they realize one of the four basic needs they are desperately seeking comes only from God.

As the book states, Marriage on the Rock (is the blueprint for) God's design for your dream marriage.


  1. What a great idea!. I can see the conflict possibilities in the list of needs for a woman and man. This will be a book worth looking into as a writer as well as a mate.

  2. I can see where you got the comment about security and honoring that you made on my last chapter you critiqued. Good stuff to use for conflict. Thanks.


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