My characters don’t eat meals anywhere near often enough in my stories. I guess nothing overly interesting happens while they are eating because it doesn’t seem to be a focus point. However, they do eat frequently while walking or just have a snack and I’ve noticed that almost all of my characters are addicted to sugar. Particularly chocolate.
So I’ve decided to sit all my characters that I am currently trying to work with down and to have a banquet.
The problem being that as soon as the first course (chicken and corn soup with sweet bread) was served I had two rival factions throwing the bread at each other from across the room and about a dozen minor altercations breaking out at various tables. Clearly sitting all my characters down and feeding them wasn’t going to work if I actually wanted to find out what food they would eat.
Having called security to run all these rampant characters out of the room I decided to just have a few of the main characters at the table with very strong security forces lining the walls and a clear sign reading ‘no violence’ on the table. They didn’t like it but they did try the soup.
The main antagonist of the story told me that soup was not suitable food for someone of her station and the bread was far too dry. After one mouthful she pushed it aside with a sniff.
Most of the other characters ate it and when asked their opinion shrugged. They didn’t really care. They had other things to worry about than food.
That might be why food does not get a lot of time in my books. The characters have a few other concerns.
How do you work with food? Do you worry about it? Is it important to your story?
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