What fun are you looking for in a story?
This is a question I've been asking people recently. I've enjoyed hearing all the different responses, and it's amazing how diverse they are.
Everyone has different things they like and dislike about a story. I want you to think about it. What stories can you think of that are your absolute favorites? Your favorite movie, book, or short story? Now, what is it about that story that you love so much? Can you pick apart what that thing is and figure out why you like it so much?
Some people responded, saying, they love drama movies, like We Bought a Zoo. I asked why? They said they love seeing the characters develop from such hard situations into a better ones. It seems realistic and it pulls at the heartstrings.
Some people said they love Inception. I asked why? They said they loved the crazy-blow-your-mindedness about it. I asked why that is enticing. They said they love to learn about an idea that is so thought provoking that it can completely change your paradigm about life just to consider it. And a movie that makes you wonder if you're dreaming does a good job at that.
Some said they love Jurassic Park. Why? Not because it was scary, but because it was thrilling to learn about the dinosaurs and see how the people would work things out to survive the attack. They loved the thrill and seeing something they love come to life.
To some people, drama is fun, but thought-provoking is not, To some, suspense and action is fun, but the character development is boring.
This is what determines what type of stories you read. This also tells why some of the best stories out there, are the stories that have multiple aspects that appeal to many preferences. One of the most successful movies of all time is James Cameron's Avatar. Think about everything it has. It's got action, adventure, thought-provoking elements, eye-candy CGI, character development drama, spectacular moments, suspense, thrills, and many more.
As for me, the favorite fun I look for in a story is the wonder aspect. I love stories that make me go, "Whoa!" and I can't stop reading, watching, or listening. For some people that could mean a beautiful sight or sound, but for me, it's the climactic moment in a story where all of those elemental genres combine into one scene. It's the part the entire story has been buliding up to. It's the final fight in Rocky IV. It's Let it Go in Frozen, It's the end of Rudy or the end of It's a Wonderful Life. It's when Goku goes supersayin for the first time. It's when the orks arrive at the battle of Helm's deep. I love those parts!
A story without a satisfying climax, for me, isn't much fun isn't much fun at all. That's why I'm not a huge fan of certain drama stories. But that's just me.
What about you? What fun do you look for most in stories?