Sometimes I wonder where our stories come from. There are stories that result from a little inspiration and a lot of hard work. Others, like the ‘Suburban Evil’, write themselves.
One day I opened a new word document, put my fingertips on the keys, and wrote about Arthur Coppola, a lawyer strangely obsessed with domestic violence cases. But when I started the first sentence, I had no idea what am I writing about. The story was born somewhere deep, sentence by sentence painting a picture of a man and a woman, in the yard, on an August day. He is very hot. Why? Because he is wearing a wool jacket. Why is he wearing a winter jacket in summer? Because he is poor, and because he needs to impress his client. Who is the client? A read head lady, meak and subdude. Why is her energy so weak? Because she was a victim of a horrible crime.
By that time, I see Arthur and Nicole as if they are in a movie scene. Nicole played by Nicole Kidman, and Arthur by Sean Penn. He is a bad boy with a good heart, she is a hurt and innocent soul that needs justice.
The problem is, Arthur does not trust the justice system. Why? He had a painful experience early in life that shaped his entire being into a loner, who nonetheless always lands on his feet.
This kind of storytelling happens to me often. The problem is, how to sustain this mystique throughout the whole story? What kind of trap is good for hunting the wind?