We all know that one person who is daring, you know, the brave and adventurous ones. I’m not one of them. Or am I? I may not be the first to jump up for skydiving or leaning over the edge of the CN tower, but if I take a close look, I’m more daring than I think. With no experience, I wrote a book, an entire novel. I dared to dream, believe and put my work out into the world. I dared to take the leap and contact literary agents. I bet if everyone thought about it there is something in their life that makes them daring.
This is why daring is a personality trait I like to give my characters. Whether small by standing up to a bully or grand by running into a room full of hostiles to take them on unarmed, or fun by being the first to bungee from a hot air balloon.
Daring people like to be challenged, it adds to the thrill of it all. So a high octane character will be whooping it up and the first in most things. First to laugh, cheer and take chances. While on the opposite end I would have someone quiet and recluse, that struggles with fitting in.
Gavin stood at the edge of the cliff. He looked down and grinned as his heart raced. “This is gonna be a blast.” He checked his jumpsuit and with a glance over his shoulder, he saluted Sasha and jumped. “Woohoooooo.”
Sasha’s hand went to her throat. No amount of preparation had prepared her for this. She edged closer to see him freefall, the bile rose to her mouth. “He’s going to die.” The weak words barely made it out. He opened his parachute and swayed in the wind as the resistance on the parachute slowed his decent.
Valerie’s hand on her shoulder made Sasha jump. “You’re next chicky.”
“No. No I’m really not. I don’t know why I thought I could do this.”
“Ah come on, it’s fun.”
“My idea of fun and yours are not always the same. I’m not daring enough. I’ll just drive down with John and meet you at the bottom.”
“Suit yourself.” Valery shrugged, ran and jumped off the edge with a howl of excitement. Sasha’s knees wobbled and she nearly fell back.
Not jumping from the cliff doesn’t make Sasha a coward in everything. She can face a boardroom of angry clients and sooth the situation and loves scuba diving, snorkeling and skiing. Creating variable depth to what a person will or will not do, can create great foreshadow for something they might have to face in the future. Perhaps I’ll have Sasha forced to decide, jump from the plane or die?
Being daring is not always the obvious choice, like when you play “Truth or dare?” People often choose dare because the truth can be scary, which makes me wonder if it’s actually more daring then to choose truth?
My advice about writing daring people.
Some people are and some aren’t. It’s not black and white, even a seasoned military person might balk a the idea of walking across hot coals or touching a tarantula. Have fun with it.
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