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The lies our characters tell themselves

David Gane
David Gane

Akira Kurosawa's Rashomon tells the story of a priest and woodcutter trying to understand a murder by listening to the testimonies of the multiple people involved. Ultimately, they struggle to find the truth amongst the lies.

A similar type of story occurs within each of us. We tell ourselves multiple accounts of events, each altered by perception, time, memory, and emotion. They are never the truth but distillations of what we believe the truth is.

When writing your fiction, consider how all these factors affect your characters. Ask yourself: What lies are they telling and hoping they'll convince themselves it's the truth?


David Gane Twitter

Co-writer of the Shepherd and Wolfe young adult mysteries, the internationally award-winning series, and teacher of storytelling and screenwriting.


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