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Do You and Your Characters Follow the Crowd’s Emotions?

One Angry Man Can Get a Crowd Stirred UpCopyright 2013 Joan Y. Edwards and Her Licensors

One Angry Man, Woman, or Child Can Get a Crowd Stirred Up
Copyright © 2013 Joan Y. Edwards and Her Licensors

“Do You and Your Characters Follow the Crowd’s Emotions?” by Joan Y. Edwards

I heard a priest, Reverend Matthew J. Leonard, give a sermon today at St. Margaret Mary’s church in Swannanoa, NC about following the crowds of different emotions for prejudice, choosing sides for sports, politics, race, religion, or other differences – imagined or real. I thought it was an interesting perspective, not only personally, but also to consider as a way to learn more about your characters.

Perhaps choose three different emotions and why a particular character would follow the crowd. Would they follow the crowd for the whole book, or would something happen to change their mind? Perception is the key.

Here are negative emotions:

  1. Hate
  2. Anger
  3. Fear
  4. Lust
  5. Jealousy
  6. Apathy


  1. Ridicule
  2. Bully
  3. Fight
  4. Kill
  5. Steal
  6. Torture
  7. Persecute
  8. Be stingy
  9. Condemn
  10. Judge
A man, woman, or child's praise can start a crowd to react the same way.Picture Copyright © 2013 Joan Y. Edwards and Her Licensors.

A man, woman, or child’s praise can start a crowd to react the same way.
Copyright © 2013 Joan Y. Edwards and Her Licensors.

Following the crowd in a good way:

  1. Acceptance When one person does it, it’s easier for the others to follow the example.
  2. Grief
  3. Peace
  4. Pride can go in either direction, good or bad
  5. Love


  1. Celebrate
  2. Advertise
  3. Support
  4. Sympathize
  5. Show compassion
  6. Share what you have with others
  7. Praise
  8. Congratulate
  9. Give gifts
  10. Applaud
  11. Reward

I hope you enjoyed pondering these things. Most of the time, I believe we think for ourselves and are positive with other people. Occasionally, we are swept by the power of the crowd. If you’ve ever been at a baseball, football, or basketball game and experienced the power of the wave, where everyone stands up and waves their hands up high in the air. Then they stay seated until it comes around again. It’s very difficult to stay seated when they are doing the wave. Here’s a video to show you the fun of the wave at a USC vs. Arizona State football game. It’s fun to be in the wave and it’s also fun to see how excited the person was filming it:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VN0S_MNwkCA . Perhaps one of them will spark a new idea on how to make your writing more believable to your readers.

Thanks for reading my blog. Please leave a message. I enjoy hearing your opinions.

Celebrate you
Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards

Copyright © 2013 Joan Y. Edwards


10 Responses

  1. Joan,
    I’m sure I’m guilty of crowd following that isn’t pretty. Thank goodness we can find forgiveness.


  2. Dear Linda,
    You’re right, we are probably all guilty of following the crowd at times in our lives. Asking for forgiveness from ourselves and others is a good thing. Accepting that we do the best we can at any particular time and make plans to do better is good, too.

    Thanks for writing. I actually hit the publish button before I was finished. Didn’t notice it until hours later. I just threw the topic out there with no follow-up. Perhaps it was more thought-provoking that way. Like seeing the headlines and later getting to read the whole story.

    Thanks for reading my blog and leaving comments regularly. You have left a comment on each one! What a blessing you are!

    Celebrate you
    Never Give Up
    Joan Y. Edwards


  3. Very insightful post. It really makes you stop and think. Thanks for sharing it. 🙂


    • Dear Mod Kitty,
      Thanks for writing. I’m glad it made you stop and think. It did me, too. Thanks for the smiley face. I hope your writing is going high bunkers!
      Celebrate you and your gift of writing!
      Never Give Up
      Joan Y. Edwards


      • Thanks. I’m doing the final edits now. Release day is the 29th. 🙂


        • Yee haw! I am excited for you.


          • Thanks! 🙂


  4. Thanks for the great post, Joan!


    • Dear Becky,
      Thanks for stopping by. I’m glad you liked this post. You do a great job on your blog. I’m proud of you.

      Celebrate You.
      Never Give Up
      Joan Y. Edwards


  5. Dear Mod Kitty,
    You’re very welcome.


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