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Depicting Abuse: Really Useful Links by Paul Anthony Shortt

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Paul Anthony Shortt

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This week’s topic is a sensitive issue, and it may be uncomfortable or even distressing for some readers, so discretion is advised.

The ugly truth of the world is that many people suffer from abuse, and this abuse typically comes from those we would expect to care for us. And that abuse can take many forms. As I always say, I write stories to show that monsters can be beaten and abuse can be one of the deadliest monsters of all.

With that in mind, I’ve collected some resources to help you understand what constitutes abusive behaviour, and to better write abusers and survivors of abuse.

1: Signs of Physical Abuse – As writers, we try to show more than we tell. So instead of saying “Tom’s father would beat him,” you can review these signs of physical abuse and pepper your descriptions with them.

2: 21 Warning Signs of an Emotionally Abusive Relationship – Not all abuse is physical. Emotional abuse can leave scars just as deep as physical. Take the advice from the previous point and use these signs to show your readers the effect of your character’s abuse.

3: Basic Tips to Write Better Abuse Victims and Abuse Situations – Personally I prefer the term “abuse survivor” to “abuse victim,” but the point is the same. The most important character in an abuse arc is the one being abused. They need to be treated with care and respect, but also in a believable manner.

4: Abuser Tricks – The only person responsible for abuse is the abuser, and to write an abuser well you need to understand the tactics they use to control others.

5:  How Can I Portray Domestic Abuse in my Story? – Finally, this brief article explores how to address domestic abuse tastefully, and also contains links to valuable information and statistics on abuse.

That’s it for this week. I know this is a tough subject, and I have great respect for anyone who decided to tackle the issue of abuse in their work.

About the author

Paul Anthony Shortt believes in magic and monsters; in ghosts and fairies, the creatures that lurk under the bed and inside the closet. The things that live in the dark, and the heroes who stand against them. Above all, he believes that stories have the power to change the world, and the most important stories are the ones which show that monsters can be beaten.
Paul’s work includes the Memory Wars Trilogy and the Lady Raven Series. His short fiction has appeared in the Amazon #1 bestselling anthology, Sojourn Volume 2.

Website: http://www.paulanthonyshortt.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pashortt

Twitter: @PAShortt
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