19 April 2012

Q is for Quarantine (A-Z Challenge)

Q is for Quarantine

I touched upon quarantine in my post about germs – but you can use quarantine in a whole lot of different ways – short term, long term, large group, small group, individual.  Quarantine is a great way to build suspense and tension or affection between your characters and those keeping them quarantined. 

Scenarios: No matter what the cause, quarantine is going to bring out the best and worst in your characters, and the people keeping them locked in.  Will it be peaceful, does it end eventually or continue for the whole story, does someone escape, or sneak in and ruin the quarantine completely?   When done well, quarantine can perfectly balance your story with human-interest, action and science.

Characters:  You could use a good doctor/scientist and some military type dudes with quarantine, but you can also make them pretty faceless and focus more on the characters being held.  Likeable, despicable, lovers, families – you’ll need some variety if you have a large group, some intense character building and relationship forming in smaller groups or if you make a very brave choice and quarantine an individual you’ll have to pull their psyche apart.

Location:  Large groups can be quarantined in a small town, on an island or cruise ship.  Small groups can be almost anywhere that is easily sealed and hard to escape from and individuals can be pretty much anywhere.  If your whole story has the same people in quarantine you’ll have to cross all the t’s and dot all the i’s making your location secure – if you’re intending some break-ins or break-outs you can be a bit more lax, just don’t give your intention away too easily!

Series or stand-alone:  It depends on the cause and intention of your quarantine.  If you’re intending to examine human relationships and reactions a stand-alone is the best option.  If you’re planning on breaking out and sharing the love a series is also viable.

Recommended by Me

The Jakarta Pandemic by Steven Konkoly

Published: 24 October 2010

Pages: 401 (kindle)

For synopsis and my review, click HERE

The Flu by Jacqueline Druga-Johnston

Published28 August 2006

Pages: 334 (paperback)

For synopsis and my review, click HERE

1 comment:

  1. Have you read Under the Dome by Stephen King? That's kind of a quarantine, yes?



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