Human interest illustrations are the comedies and dramas, the laughs and tears, the fears and cheers in a life. They may be as simple as a splinter in your big toe, or as deep as mixed emotions, such as you might have if you should see your mother-in-law driving your Cadillac over a cliff; the bike that broke your arm, the date that did not materialize. There can be human interest when a person falls into a lake, or in love, loses his billfold, gets an unusual telephone call, or in one of a million other unusual bits of life.
Human interest occurs when people experience something different than is usually expected.
Boy meets girl. Could this situation be correctly called human interest? Perhaps only for the two who meet.
Try starting a conversation or a speech with, “A boy met a girl today!”
What is the listener’s response? “So what? That happens thousands of times every day.”
Boy meets girl. They fall in love. “So what?”
They will be married in June, or July. Still so what?
But . . . enter a blonde charmer, an heiress, who drops her check book and looks at the boy with an expression that could be poured on waffles.
The poor girl who is to be married in June or July sees what
is happening, but she is still determined that those wedding bells
will ring for her as originally planned; !
So what now becomes “Whatl So?” The story has become interesting because it has left the beaten path of the usual routine. There is evidence of approaching conflict, dramatic action, suspense—vital elements of human interest.
So what makes a story interesting? More to come.