Fiction can be plodding and dull without tension, and that is provided by conflict. In my current WIP, the two main characters come from different worlds, have different belief systems, and different goals. Yet they are attracted to each other and like each other as people. This often occurs in real life as well.
Kaiden is the youngest in the Beck family. Ever since he was little, he’s been fascinated by rocks and geology which led naturally to his career in energy. His plan is to stay in the oil fields until he’s ready to retire. Gary (Geraldine) is from a Texas energy family with both parents career professionals. She’s gotten degrees in the energy field to learn as much as she can about both fossil fuels and renewables to position herself for a policy job. He believes change will evolve over time. She is an evangelist for the new way of doing things.
To see how that conflict plays out, you’ll need to read Starting for Home, available in August 2021.
Back to the conflict between the Pueblo people, Franciscans, and Spanish. I’m currently reading The Pueblo Revolt: The Secret Rebellion That Drove the Spaniards Out of the Southwest which sheds light on the conflict, albeit from a slightly biased viewpoint. It turns out the Franciscans were determined to wipe out any trace of the native religion, building their churches on top of kivas as a clear statement. Although the Abo kiva was left, they may have used it as a garbage dump … adding insult to injury. After the Pueblo Revolt in 1680, the natives built a new kiva at Pecos–right next to the church they’d destroyed. (My husband emerging from the kiva. I’m highly claustrophobic … so no.)
The thing I like about writing books is that conflict is eventually resolved. Not so much in real life. Even today, the pain of history simmers between the descendants of the ancient participants of war and intolerance.