Monday, February 20, 2017


Today's topic at WiHM Blog Talks is Choice of Weapons. Read what Naching T. Kassa and James P. McDonald have to say.
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Name: Naching T. Kassa

Naching T. Kassa is a wife, mother, and Horror Author. She is a member of the Horror Writers Association and a contributor to the Demonic Visions series.
As a horror writer, I've always possessed a special affinity for knives and swords. Both are sharp, draw a lot of blood, and add to the drama of a scene. Blades are personal, you have to get close to the victim in order to use them. They also add a certain amount of finality. No one, not even most monsters, can survive a beheading by sword. A knife can stab, cut, or slash a throat. Jack the Ripper's weapon of choice was a blade. And, in the old west, the knife was considered more reliable than a revolver. Most men carried a knife in case their gun misfired or exploded. My weapon of choice is the blade. It's the best.

Name: James P. McDonald

James P. McDonald is a business and technology consultant, fiction and non-fiction author, technology and futurist speaker.
I use a lot of weapons in my writing, from basic handguns and rifles, bows, swords, and even enchanted objects and magic. With this in mind, and as handy as these can be, all of them can fail. They break, they run out of ammunition, the magic missile that only works on a Tuesday under a full moon while wearing a corset and hot pants.

The favorite weapon I have ever seen is, and I believe always will be the mind. I’ve studied psychology, and find “abnormal” psych to be invaluable. I do some work and writing in Artificial Intelligence, and I’m fascinated, and sometimes terrified of these technologies.

If you look at Sarah Connor in the original terminator movies, all the guns and explosions in the world can’t stop the automaton, but quick thought and leading him through some equipment allows her to narrowly escape and trap him. In the following films, you see her develop skills, but the thing she hardens and prepares most is her mind and her instincts.

In the movie, “You’re Next” the main character is a young woman on the bad end of a home invasion. Unlike so many tropes, she doesn’t fall over screaming and running naked into the woods. She’s strong and empowered, and takes her strength of mind to turn the tables. I won’t spoil it, but it’s worth watching.

And if you’re talking about mind games, consider Clarice in “Silence of the Lambs.” She is truly in a battle of the mind and wits against Hannibal Lecter in an effort to catch Buffalo Bill.

And in literature, the character of Coraline in a book (and a movie of the same name) is a young girl who is trapped in an alternate universe, and all she is trying to do is to get home. Even though it’s a “children’s” book, and looking into the girl’s mind and reasoning, because it’s the only weapon she has.

So if you ask me about my favorite weapon, it has to be the mind. I love watching the development of a character’s reasoning, handling issues and challenges, and ultimately how they grow and change. The other reason for this is, does your character make the correct choice about the physical weapons they select, if they do? Do they take a handgun with too much power? Do they not think about the cost to themselves and others if they select a magical power or object?

And most importantly, do they make the right decisions as to If, how, and when to use those abilities?
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  1. Naching, I love how you say, "Blades are personal, you have to get close to the victim in order to use them." And the feeling of the blade sliding in...chilling!

    Jim, great choice of weapon. It's different than you'd think of right off, but lingers for years and years. Truly leads into Torture on Friday.

  2. Great post, Naching - Blades are very intimate, indeed. Nice choice!

    Jim - Nice out of the box thinking. The mind is fascinating and like Wendy said, a good lead into Friday's torture discussion, which I'm a part of. Love psychological horror :)

    1. One must enjoy intimacy and smarts both.

  3. Both of these posts explore weapons I favor - blades and brains.

    And Naching, you're correct. Not much can survive a beheading.

    Jim - the mind is indeed our most powerful weapon, and is the most difficult to master. Great post on its use!

  4. You're right, Jim! The mind is the greatest weapon. Fascinating!

    1. Until your sword lops it off, Naching.