How to Write Conflict in Fiction


In fiction, conflict occurs when two parties have opposite goals, beliefs, or ideals. This shows the reader how a character sees the world. Their actions and desires are a direct result of those beliefs. Without conflict, those desires wouldn’t exist. Conflict makes readers care about the characters and their situation. Here are a few ways to write compelling conflict:

A good example of natural conflict is the story of Moby Dick. The main character is on a mission to conquer a white whale, which he believes is an impersonal force in the natural world. He tries to do this by using his wits and cunning. A similar situation may occur aboard a ship. Natural forces like the wind and waves pose a number of challenges for the crew of a ship. The main character must decide who is more important – the ship or the white whale?

A story cannot be complete without conflict. When two or more characters have different goals, conflict forces them to compromise and work together to accomplish their objectives. Conflict drives fiction forward and helps make stories more interesting. Whether the conflict is positive or negative, the story needs conflict to keep it exciting. When the protagonist has an opponent who wants the same thing as him, the story will be more exciting. When a protagonist feels he or she is outnumbered, he or she can use a compulsion to prove themselves.

If there is a strong opposition to your position, try to understand what they want to achieve and what you can offer. Often, a third party can help you brainstorm a solution by helping both parties come up with a common interest. If your opponents want to achieve stability and public respect, try to understand their concerns and motivations. The most rewarding and effective solution is usually one that benefits both parties. But before you start brainstorming, remember that conflict resolution is a process of compromise.

Some people fear conflict because they perceive it as a threat. They expect disagreements to turn ugly. For them, conflict is humiliating, demoralizing, or even traumatic. If the conflict is not resolved properly, the negative consequences may be too great to bear. However, a healthy conflict can improve relationships and foster understanding. When conflict resolution occurs, both parties can agree to work together and move forward. If this is not possible, the conflict can be resolved through mediation.

If a person is unwilling to compromise, he or she might withdraw emotionally and avoid further communication. In some cases, conflict can also lead to unhealthy psychological symptoms, such as fear of abandonment or rejection. Regardless of the reasons for the conflict, if the person is not willing to work towards a compromise, they may be prone to avoid reaching an agreement and avoiding punishment. Further, these negative emotions can make people feel fearful of the situation and anticipate that they will lose the relationship.