Writing Wednesday: One Man’s Meat is Another Man’s Poison

We couldn’t afford holidays when I was a child. I remember going to stay with relatives a few times, and the first time I remember was staying with my Dad’s parents in Sussex when I was 4 or 5. Two teenage boy cousins stayed as well, which was not a good idea, since they teased me. They christened me ‘waterworks’ because I cried so much. They did teach me to gamble at cards though!

Grandparents Stoner

Nanna and Grandad had the great idea of taking us to Brighton for the day, a seaside resort on the south coast of England. The train journey was exciting and the beach was a new adventure. Nanna and Grandad settled themselves in deckchairs and sent us off to play, with the instruction to stay in sight. The boys disappeared and I played in the sand.

After a while I was encouraged to go down to the water. After all, a visit to the seaside isn’t complete without at least a paddle in the sea. I went down to the water’s edge and duly got my feet wet, but the moving water unnerved me. My most vivid memory of that day is standing in the water screaming at the top of my voice every time a wave came in. My grandparents had to come and get me as I was paralysed with fear. They couldn’t understand why I wasn’t enjoying myself. They couldn’t see it from my point of view.

This is a device you may find useful in fiction writing. You can introduce peril for your hero or heroine without dangling them off a cliff or having them chased by evil men. Remember Indiana Jones in the film series, who was afraid of snakes? He faced all manner of dangers, but fell apart when faced with a snake. And of course, in the middle of the action he found himself in a room full of snakes!

Indiana Jones snakes

So what are your characters’ secret fears? They can be used against them, but they also make them more human.

About Ann Marie Thomas

Married since 1974, Christian since 1986, 4 children, 4 grand children, disabled with fibromyalgia but was working almost full time until a stroke in May 2010 changed my life completely. Writing poetry and making up stories since I was a child, I only started to write seriously when my children were grown. My main ambition is to write science fiction, but along the way I got distracted by local history and poetry about my stroke. Taking early retirement gave me the chance to concentrate on my writing. My book, Alina, The White Lady of Oystermouth, was published in print and ebook at Easter 2012. The success of Alina led to the publication of Broken Reed: The Lords of Gower and King John in September 2013, and The Magna Carta Story at Easter 2015. I am still writing science fiction - a series of novels called Flight of the Kestrel. For all my author news, see me author blog at www.annmariethomas.me.uk
This entry was posted in writing, Writing Wednesday and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Writing Wednesday: One Man’s Meat is Another Man’s Poison

  1. Pingback: Writing Wednesday: 2015 Writing Roundup | Ann Marie Thinking Out Loud

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s