Friday, January 27, 2012

Feeling like a kid again

Happy Friday, gang. We made it!

I made some great strides on my middle grade story this week, much to the detriment of anything else like work, working out, laundry, you get the idea. Specifically, I spent a lot of time thinking what would scare a kid?

There's a scene in my story that is essentially the second "disaster" (if you subscribe to the three disasters and an ending plot structure). I've been trying to find a way to make my character create his own disaster as a result of trying to do what he feels is the right thing. I realize this is all quite vague. Bear with me.

My 11-year-old MC is in this tense situation that currently reads very "A happens, then B, and then C."


I need to find a way to increase the tension and put my MC in a position where he makes a choice only to have the ramifications make everything worse. Best laid plans and all that...

To ramp up the tension, I started to think about what would scare a kid who was alone outside in nature. Swarms of large insects. Falling. Tripping. Darkness. Sounds. Voices. Hallucinations. You get the idea.

But just to make sure I'm not overlooking anything, I thought I'd turn to my blog and ask you guys:

What scared you when you were a kid? (Especially anything outside!)


  1. How about just being alone outside in nature? I like solitude, but utter solitude, especially in an unfamiliar or unsafe place... that feeling of being totally alone in the universe and helpless. I'm getting scared just thinking about it.

    Also, eternity. I was scared of eternity as a kid.

  2. Just being outside at night did it for me! (I always hated Cub Scout camping.) Something large, like a bear, eating me was scary.

  3. I loved being outside, sorry ^^;

    I had issues with spiders. I still have issues with spiders. Keep those horrid creatures away from me AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!

  4. well, once i saw IT, clowns peeking in my windows were definitely scary.
    I actually wans't scared by anything outdoors. We used to play night games outside all summer.
    I guess i don't like daddy long legs. Stupid harvestmen, can't even be REAL spiders, can they?

  5. The idea of some creepy, dangerous stranger stumbling across us in the woods and doing me and my friends harm literally kept me up at night at Girl Scout camp.

  6. Eternity, bears, spiders, clowns, and strangers. Got it.

    I might make a throw-away scene with all these elements simply because it sounds too good to pass!

    Seriously, Sarah? Eternity? Just goes to show you can't make this stuff up. :)

  7. Storms scared the bejeezus out of me as a kid! The idea of lightning and tornadoes coming in the darkness was very scary.

    And being in the dark woods was also creepy! What got me the most was my overactive imagination...What was that noise? Is there an animal following me? Also, sometime animals really do get up in the middle of the night - deer, birds, etc - and that is totally nervewracking to have a sudden explosion of noise in the dark silence.

  8. I think Blogger might've eaten my comment; I typed it out and it looked like it'd submitted, but now it's not showing? Dunno. Sorry if this is a repeat:

    It was always the dark, for me. Or more specifically, the unknown that might be lurking in the dark. We lived in a rural area and even just walking out to the fields to bring the horses in after dark would make my stomach clench up because /anything/ could be out there waiting to pounce on me. Men with an intent to murder were the ones I worried about the most. Wolves were maybe a close second, despite the fact that we were too far south for wolves.

    Congrats on your milestones! That's such a great accomplishment! Hope your next hundred are just as fun! And hope you have a great time in Vegas, which should be an awesome experience. :)

  9. I spent a lot of time out in the woods as a kid, too, so not much scared me. Except suddenly realizing I was completely lost, all by myself. That was never good.
    Good luck!


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