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“I have often wondered how to convey to my classes an emotion that would be similar in character and degree to that which the audience at a cannibal dance might feel when the cannibal first appears. How do you convey to the people that the instrument of their own death is present in the room?”
—Victor Turner, from The Anthropology of Performance
A fictional character gets hungry.
He gets fed.
A character gets cold.
She goes inside to warm up by a fire with a shot of whiskey.
Let’s have her meet a sexy stranger at a bookstore. She hooks up, falls in love, but never has to deal with details like sleep disorders, childcare, and debt.
The best kind of character stumbles over the dead body of a friend. In the garden.
What next? Figure out a motive, look for clues, eliminate suspects, and collar the killer.