Freeing the voices in my head

Posts tagged ‘speech’


I don’t know what to write, if I’ll write more, do a real blog post today.

You see, I was proofing and polishing a part of my manuscript, an intense scene where the villain had a woman strapped to a chair.  Now, he had to make sure she could not move her hands or mouth, speak or articulate any words at all.  I used three paragraphs describing this, carefully crafting how he used duct tape around her jaw and over her head, across and around her throat…

I snort at movies  that show a captive gagged with one piece of tape or cloth.  So stupid.  It’s easy to make a lot of loud noises, including articulate words, that way.  Believe me, I know (and you really don’t want to know why I know).  There are so many moving parts, so many ways we express speech and sound, so if you want your captive to be absolutely silent, you have to stop all those parts from moving.

A ball of cloth shoved down the throat, the classic taping of the lips, something tied around the mouth – done?  Nope.  Hold that jaw still by wrapping the head like a mummy.  Now?  Nope, sorry, you’ve got vocal chords to contend with, so you need to wrap something around your captive’s neck, almost to the point of choking him/her.  There…oops, those lungs and diaphragm can still vibrate, sending out sound.  Tape ’em up tight, like you would tape up broken ribs.  Ahhh….

And then, it hit me.  This particular villain wouldn’t bother with all that.  It’s okay for his captive to make sounds, but he cannot let her speak or make words.  So, I trashed all three paragraphs, throwing off the rhythm of the rest of the chapter, and had my villain just eat her tongue.  After all, he IS a cannibal…