Who Is Mistral Dawn?

Mistral Dawn is a thirty-something gal who has lived on both coasts of the US but somehow never in the middle. She currently resides in the Southeast US with her kitty cats (please spay or neuter! :-)) where she works as a hospital drudge and attends graduate school. Taken By The Huntsman is her first effort at writing fiction and if it is well received she has ideas for several more novels and short-stories in this series. Please feel free to visit her on FaceBook or drop her a line at mistralkdawn@gmail.com

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

#Who *ARE* all of these #people?!? And #why do they #do the #things they do?

Hey Everyone!! :-)

So, how do you get away with wandering around in a perpetual fog, and talking to people that no one else can see, without ending up in a padded room?  You tell people that you're an author of course! :-)  Seriously though, who are all of these people wandering around in my head, where did they come from, and why do they do the things that they do? ;-)

After all, isn't it strange that people just sort of pop up and start ordering me around?  They do, you know? ;-)  Then, when I give in and start writing down their stories, they refuse to cooperate and go off and do the weirdest things!! WTF??? So I start asking myself, who are these people?  Maybe if I know who they are, and a little more about their backgrounds, I'll have a better understanding of why they do the things they do.

It works in real life, right?  I mean, you come in contact with strangers almost everyday, and sometimes they engage in the most bizarre behavior, but maybe if you knew where they were coming from it wouldn't be so bizarre. That woman in the produce department who nearly ran you down with her cart as she ran for the dairy isle?  How rude!  But what if you knew that her husband was in the hospital, fighting for his life after being run over by a backhoe at the construction site he works at.  They have two toddlers who she has left with her mother, who is disabled, and the kids have been demanding milk and cereal all day.  The woman's mom can't drive, so she can't go get the milk, and (as a disabled, elderly person) she is having trouble dealing with two active, hungry toddlers.  The woman needs to get the milk and cereal as quickly as possible, because she needs to get back to her husband in the hospital.  She's stressed out, sleep deprived, frightened, and just not thinking about the other people in the grocery store.  She probably never even saw you.  Maybe that doesn't excuse her behavior, exactly, but knowing what is going on in her life certainly goes a long way towards explaining why she's acting the way that she is.  Something to think about the next time someone behaves in a thoughtless or unkind manner, right?

Just as understanding peoples' present is important, it's also necessary to understand their past, because their history affects they way they behave.  That man who jumped and moved away from you when you gave him a friendly pat on the back?  When he was a child, his uncle molested him repeatedly, and every instance of abuse began with a pat on the back.  So what you thought was someone just being overly-sensitive, and maybe antisocial, was really a result of serious trauma and PTSD.  You see how important understanding someone's past can be to understanding their behavior?

So when characters start behaving in ways I don't understand, I ask myself "who are they?"  Eventually, enough of their story comes out that their behavior starts to have some context, and I'm better able to predict what they will do next.  It also makes for an interesting addition to the Who's Who section in my books! :-)


  1. Replies
    1. That is sooo true in every way.things can be misunderstood and taken mistakenly and can ruin peoples lives if even by mistake, so i underdstand very well. And thats what makes you such a great author because you tell a story so well; you draw us in very fast and it makes us live you even moređź’“

    2. So very true. Something I used to remind myself when I waited tables. I love how you tie it into writing for your characters. I will keep this in mind as I write.

    3. Thank you, Violet! Best of luck with your writing too!! :-)