The Effects of Isolation

People, are by nature, social beings. We love spending time with those we care about. Even when forced to interact with casual acquaintances or workmates, we can find someone that has something in common with us and enjoy each other’s company.

What happens when we are isolated for some reason? Sickness forces us to confine ourselves to home. Even if we live with family, we will shut ourselves up on a bedroom, limiting contact and hopefully exposure. For how long can we tolerate isolation before it impacts us negatively?

Picture a person with poor social skills who lacks friends. What does he do? How does he spend time? What goes through his mind?

What about victims of crime who are locked into cells? Prisoners held in isolation from the rest of the population?

Think of the stories you can tell.

Your task is to create an individual who is apart from society. You might want to do some research into the psychological effects of isolation. Read a few case studies. Then make a bullet-point list of a reason that your character is isolated and how she reacts.

Write the story. Make sure there is conflict and tension. Perhaps your character is teased or tortured in some way. Maybe she is ignored or ridiculed.

When you are finished, reread and rewrite, adding in sufficient details to increase tension.

Have fun with this one.

 

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