I crossed the street and went down half a block. That's when it happened. All of a sudden I felt an itch on the back of my leg, another on my arm, one more on the front of my other leg. I also noticed two black spots on Rascal, which were not part of her normal spotty appearance, so I quickly swiped them off.
We'd been attacked by mosquitos. I hadn't anticipated such a possibility, yet I should have seen it coming. Why hadn't I? For one thing, we'd walked unscathed countless times. For another, my mind was elsewhere, enjoying the faint breeze floating by after a particularly scorching day before.
If I'd stopped to think about it, clues of a mosquito invasion were present. We'd had a heavy rainful the evening before, and the atmosphere was cloudy and muggy. Conditions were ripe for bites. I hadn't gotten them before after it had rained so hard my basement got flooded over a week ago, yet I still should have been vigilant to the possibility.
How does this pertain to writing?
It's a challenge to create a character smart enough to not seem like a dunce, yet at the same time unaware of lurking dangers. After all, we do want our characters to suffer, but not appear they're too dumb to live. How can we do that?
One way is to get your character so focused on an emotion or thought he or she can't think of anything else until it's too late. I was focused on the breeze.
Another, is to give your character a false sense of security, like I had. The danger for bites had been present, but I'd been lulled into thinking it couldn't happen because it hadn't before.
Can you think of other ways? Or maybe, you'd like to mention something that happened to you after you'd been lullafter into a false sense of security.
Morgan Mandel writes mysteries,
romances, and thrillers. She's a
past president of Chicago-North
RWA, was the Library Liaison
for Midwest MWA, and is an
active blogger and networker.
Her personal blog is at:
and website is http://www/morganmandel.com.
See her new senior blog at http://spunkyseniors.blogspot.com/
where a new guest is featured every Thursday.
Her romantic suspense, Killer Career, is 99 cents on Kindle and Smashwords. Her new thriller, Forever Young - Blessing or Curse is targeted for release soon on Kindle and at Smashwords.