How to Write a Memory Scene

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Part 1


1. Why are they thinking about it now, and have they always thought about it?

»A. How soon can they remember it, how hard is it for them to recall it or is it easy because they think about it all the time?

I. Do they have to recall their memory for an important event, or is it just for fun?
II. Does it physically or mentally hurt the character to remember this memory?
 
  
 

»B. Does it give them pain to think about it or does it make them happy?

I. Does the character think the whole memory is hard to remember or just parts of it? If so, what parts and do they tell the person who they’re trying to relay the memory to or do they just omit it all together? 

II. If it makes them happy show it by creating happy expressions in the character’s voice, or the way they talk about it they might smile and stop halfway when discussing about the memory. 

III. You can have a mixture of this memory, half good and half bad that makes the character feel wishy-washy and uncertain of themselves. Have the character react to each moment when think about what happened long, long ago.
 
  
 

Part 2

2. Is the memory vivid or are there pieces missing?

»A. Has the character wrote down the memory before; do they know it like the back of their hand?

I. Does the memory seem like it was just yesterday that it happened even though it was several years ago? 

II. Why does the character remember it’s so easily or why don’t they remember so at all? 

III. What details does the character remember even though they black it out before?
 
  
 

»B. If the character has blacked out the memory, why? What have they replaced with the truth? Or do they not even see half the memory?

I. What part of history has the memory made for the character or the lives of others? 

II. Maybe they have a medical problem that does not allow them to remember a lot of things but when it comes to this memory, they remember very vividly. If this is the case then, why?
 
  
 

Part 3

3. How are the character’s reactions and the people who are watching them reacting to the memory being recalled?

»A. Do people lean in, do they help the character out with the memory, do they share the memory?

I. What expression is on the audiences’ face and are they following the character or are they going against what the character’s feeling? 

II. If they have a shared memory, then do they have the same feeling of the memory from the character’s?
 
  
 

»B. Do they surprise themselves with how much they remember? Or is the memory clouded and takes a while to come back to them? 

I. Maybe the character did not remember, at first, but everything started to come back to them very fast, if so what triggered that? 

II. If the memory is clouded, then how does the character, or the person that is listening to them, piece back the memory… and do they have temporary fillers until they get the real portion of that memory.
 
  
 

Part 4

4. Can this memory help settle anything or how about help the character move on for the better?

»A. Are they trying to discover an answer that will help find something or create an important object/idea?

I. What rewards will the character get, whether physical or emotional, if they can remember the entire memory, not just bits and pieces but the memory from start to beginning? 

II. Maybe the character was always missing a piece of the memory because they didn’t see everything or know everything. They probably were a child and don’t remember that much. If this is the case then what clues or puzzle pieces does the character receive in order to connect the dots. For example, they might receive pictures from when their child or hear recordings from the memory that happened. All these can help spark a better memory.
 
  
 

»B. Maybe recalling the memory can help sort things out? Either with the real world, the character’s own self-esteem, or mental health.

I. Is this about money or is it about who is right, maybe this is a political thing. How big has this memory recalling become?  

II. Does the character believe that they will discover something important if they remember or are they just doing it for someone else? Do they even care about remembering?
 
  
 

Part 5

5. How intense is the character now or has the memory completely been wiped from their mind somehow?

»A. Is the character fully alert? Has it drain them to remember the memory? How are they feeling?

I. Has the character fallen asleep, or maybe they needed a bottle of whiskey to soothe their mind?
II. Does the character start remembering things from out of nowhere; like that one memory triggered the rest of their memory?
 
  
 

»B. What does the character have to offer after the memory has been served or if it hasn’t been served?

I. Is the character considered useful still? Maybe the character has to show those who are listening to them where and how the memory took place by physically being there. 

II. If the character could not fully remember how do they cope with that? Are they okay with not remembering or does it hurt them more than they thought it would? 

III. End this scene on a calm note. Maybe the character’s thinking a lot and is so much in their thoughts that they can’t hear anyone. How has this affected the character in the long-term?
 
  
 

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