Friday, January 11, 2019

32 Ways to Write About Fear -Guest Post

32 Ways To Write About Fear


32 Ways To Write About Fear


How do we write about fear in an authentic way?
Fear is a vital response for human beings. If we didn’t feel fear, we couldn’t protect ourselves from threats. Our bodies and brains are wired to treat threats as life-threatening. This triggers an extreme fight-flight-or-freeze response.
Our fears are not solely dependent on instinctive responses. They are also shaped by our societies and cultures, which teach people when to fear and how much to fear.
Sometimes, our fear is unnecessary and we avoid doing things that could be beneficial to us. Sometimes, facing danger can result in lingering  responses that trigger us to act in a certain way, even when the risk is gone.
The same is true for the characters we create. When we write about fearful characters, we should remember to write about them in a realistic way.
Here are 32 things to consider when you write about fear:

A)  Physical Reactions

When we are afraid, we have these reactions:
  1. An accelerated breathing rate
  2. An accelerated heart rate
  3. Increased muscle tension
  4. Goose bumps
  5. Sweating
  6. Increased blood glucose
  7. Increased white blood cells
  8. Sleep disturbances
  9. Butterflies in the stomach
  10. Difficulty concentrating
  11. Difficulty swallowing
  12. Dizziness
All of these responses help us to survive by either running away or fighting. Use these physical reactions to show your character is afraid.

B)  Body Language

In your body language, signs of fear include:
  1. Hunching shoulders
  2. Shrinking away
  3. Open mouth
  4. Wide eyes
  5. Shaking
  6. Trembling
  7. Freezing
  8. Wrapping arms around oneself
  9. Shaking hands
  10. Rocking from side to side

C)  Rational Or Irrational?

  1. Fear is rational. It is a reasonable response to danger.
  2. Phobias are irrational. They are persistent, irrational fears of a specific object, activity, or situation that leads to a compelling desire to avoid it. Read: Writing About Characters With Phobias

D)   Ways to create conflict

There are three classic ways people respond to fear. They fight, flee, or freeze. Use these responses to create suspense in your book.
  1. Fight – choose when your characters would reasonably stay to confront the danger.
  2. Flight – choose when your character would reasonably choose to run away.
  3. Freeze – choose when your character would realistically become paralyzed with fear.
Use these three responses at different times to show different aspects of your character. Use them when they suit your plot.

E)  The Importance of Fear in Plotting

As a writer, you can use fear to move the plot forward in many ways:
  1. You can create a fearful situation to move a plot forward.
  2. You can literally change the setting by making characters move to avoid a threat.
  3. You can increase or decrease the pace of a story by introducing a threat.
  4. You can show another facet of the character in the way he or she reacts to fear.
  5. You can use it to show growth. Characters can look at the way fear made them act and change their behaviour.
Top Tip: If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg or sign up for our online course.
© Amanda Patterson
                                                       ***
Thanks for stopping by. Did you enjoy this guest post by great writing teacher Amanda Patterson? Do you have a comment about writing fear to add? Please share by clicking on the small icons below.
Blessings,
Elva Martin
Elva Cobb Martin is vice-president of the South Carolina Chapter of American Christian Fiction Writers. She is a former school teacher and a graduate of Anderson University and Erskine College. She has two inspirational novels published with Lighthouse Publishers of the Carolinas. Summer of Deception, a contemporary romantic suspense, and an historical romance, In a Pirate’s Debt. Both have spent time on Amazon’s 100 Best Sellers List for Women’s Religious Fiction. She has indie published a Bible study on Amazon, Power Over Satan, on the  believer's authority in Christ. Decision, Charisma, and Home Life have carried Elva's articles. She and her husband Dwayne are semi-retired ministers. A mother and grandmother, Elva lives in South Carolina. Connect with her on her web site http://www.elvamartin.com,on Twitter www.twitter.com/ElvaCobbMartin; Facebook http://www.facebook.com/elvacobbmartin;  and Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/elvacobbmartin    
 Link to her romance novels and non-fiction works on Amazon:http://amzn.to/2pOgVHI

Friday, January 4, 2019

Writers' January Prayer & Fast - Part 2 Five Prayer Points

by Elva Cobb Martin

For Part 1 click here http://bit.ly/2GSzoja


Below are five prayer points to help you draw close to God during whatever fast you choose to do. My fave fast is to fast all meats, all sweets, secular TV, movies for at least one week. This will cleanse your body from a lot of toxins and your mind from culture contamination--and bless you spiritually! And there are plenty of great vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, eggs, etc. to choose from. God's original diet he gave mankind in Gen. 1:29 was a vegetarian diet and they lived hundreds of years. 

These five prayer points are based on James 4:7 "Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee."


1) Draw close, submit to God and humble yourself
In true repentance for any backsliding, slackness, unforgiveness, anger, jealousy

In all manner of prayer (petition, confession, intercession, binding and loosening (spiritual warfare)and your prayer language, if you have one.

Start your annual Bible Read through plan

Meditate, memorize scripture

Read other Christian growth books (you’ve got time now, without TV). Check out my mini-book on Spiritual Warfare prayer at this link: http://amzn.to/2xwObpT  If you'd like a free eBook of Power Over Satan, leave your request in a comment below or contact me through my web site at www.elvamartin.com.


Keep a prayer journal (notebook) daily. Start out with thanks and praise, then list prayer needs and jot down texts of God's promises. I have prayer journals that go back years and track so many important moves in our lives. God's plans.

2) Ask the Lord to reveal and change whatever needs to be changed in your life.
Stewardship of your body (diet, exercise), your time, and your money and talents

Determine to show God’s love and kindness to all

Be a better witness and seek first the Kingdom of God

Determine to speak right words of faith (Prov. 18:21) and hope vs. negativism, doubt, fear. Speak the Word of God over needs. Bless others. Call forth seeds of greatness in those others are tearing down.




3) Petitions – List your needs and write scripture promises for each one in your journal

Your family and lost family members

The church pastor and church family

Health issues

Financial needs, getting out of debt, wisdom to plan

Other personal needs. If a writer, like me, ask the Lord to guide and bless your efforts, your computer, your time, and give you divine connections to those who can assist you. Plant seeds of help to others. Harvest will come just when you need it.

4) Pray for our Nation, Our Leaders, and a Great Awakening


The President, His Cabinet, Congress, Pentagon, city and state leaders

Our schools blessing and protection

Ask God to deliver all unborn babies slated for abortion and turn our nation against murder of the unborn.

Ask God to protect our soldiers, law officers, and firemen whose lives are on the line for our protection

Join the thousands in our nation praying fervently for God to send America a Great Awakening. I believe it is beginning!





5) Resist the devil –and he will flee
         Be forewarned, the enemy will try everything to keep you from prayer and fasting. Be wise. Don’t plan anything extra to do, or places to go. Give this prayer and fasting week your first, best and quality time. Refuse to be sidetracked, sideswiped or sick in Jesus’ name! You are in the Army now!


During my week of  prayer and fasting, I usually spend about an hour daily in the above type prayer mode, then go about my regular duties

Two vital things God spoke to me during earlier January Prayer and Fasts

1) He instructed us to move our retirement funds out of the stock market several years ago two weeks before the first big 300 point dip of the market. Some folks lost a great deal.

2) For years I have lifted up our financial plans, especially investments for retirement, during these January times. One year the Lord spoke into my spirit, "If you don't become a better steward over your body, somebody else will be steward over your retirement funds." DUH! I got that message and that coming year we made an about face toward a healthier diet, supplements, and regular, diligent exercise. We continue to study health stuff in our retirement. And we are blessed in every way. Even with our retirement funds. We give God the glory!

Thanks for stopping by. Do you have a pointer for prayer and fasting or an experience to share? Don't miss next week's guest blog on "32 Ways to Write About Fear."

Blessings,
Elva Martin

Elva Cobb Martin is vice-president of the South Carolina Chapter of American Christian Fiction Writers. She is a former school teacher and a graduate of Anderson University and Erskine College. She has two inspirational novels published with Lighthouse Publishers of the Carolinas. Summer of Deception, a contemporary romantic suspense, and an historical romance, In a Pirate’s Debt. Both have spent time on Amazon’s 100 Best Sellers List for Women’s Religious Fiction. She has indie published a Bible study on Amazon, Power Over Satan, on the  believer's authority in Christ. Decision, Charisma, and Home Life have carried Elva's articles. She and her husband Dwayne are semi-retired ministers. A mother and grandmother, Elva lives in South Carolina. Connect with her on her web site http://www.elvamartin.com,on Twitter www.twitter.com/ElvaCobbMartin; Facebook http://www.facebook.com/elvacobbmartin;  and Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/elvacobbmartin    
 Link to her romance novels and non-fiction works on Amazon:http://amzn.to/2pOgVHI