This is the prompt from WordPress: You’re in the middle of a terrible argument, and everyone turns to you to help resolve it. How do you respond? How do you react to conflict?

The holy grail for most commercial fiction writers is the GMC formula. My characters blossom under conflict. This is the opposite of me in my real life. My characters go to the mattresses. I engage in dialogue and look for common ground. My characters are invested. It is rare for me to invest in anything except my 403b and a box of cupcakes.

I hate conflict in real life. I shy away from butting heads, yelling to the point of exhaustion, banging my head against a stubborn wall. I shrink from conflict. Not to say I let people win. I practice the Fabian strategy--thanks 30 Rock–or I engage in hacking the system for my benefit. I preserve the good of the order and sometimes you have to make the other side think they won.


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