Sometimes the craziest things happen when you least expect them . . . aka, when you're sleeping. For those of you who were following me on Twitter a few days ago, you might have found something entertaining in your early morning feed. For those of you that missed it, a quick rundown:
Yes, my cat was dive-bombing headfirst into furniture while playing with a mouse, which was screaming for its life as she flung it into the air. I love cats, but the next time you want to write a good villain, go watch a cat play with a mouse for a while--they're sadistic little fuzzballs.
In fact, animals in general are great to observe when you need help developing a character. Kinda sounds ridiculous, huh? Why not just watch a movie or read a book and observe on those characterizations?
Well, the emotions of animals are often expressed in the extreme.
When your dog is afraid of being left alone and accidentally locks himself in a room, he'll freak out and dig through the sheetrock (the dog was fine, btw). When your prissy cat refuses to drink water out of her bowl, she'll show up every time you go to the bathroom in hopes that you run the tapwater for her (this is a different cat).
They may be a little melodramatic, but these kinds of behaviors are fantastic. They're raw and primal and sometimes that's what a writer needs when trying to flesh out a character. Like animals, people don't always act according to logic, they act according to how they feel.
So next time your characters feel a little flat, channel your pets. Go visit a friend with a dog and watch how he reacts to things. Remember my cat as a super villain: she tortures the hero until he thinks all is lost, but somehow, in the end, he survived to fight another day.
What about you guys--any interesting pet stories? Have cats left you fleshy goodies on your front porch? Have you ever transported a dead llama? Tell me in the comments!
Oh, and if you haven't done so already, go enter my giveaway!