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  1. sinnernear
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    sinnernear Member

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    Saving a life?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by sinnernear, May 29, 2014.

    I'm trying to write about a person who saves someone else's life, but I just don't know HOW they save it.

    How many different ways can you guys think of that someone could save another person's life? (Please omit anything involving drowning or suicide.)
     
  2. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Well, it may help if we narrow it down a bit. What's happening to the person in peril? Give us that, and we'll be able to help you.
     
  3. Okon
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    Okon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Pulling them back from a speeding truck's path, driving them to the hospital, making a path to the windpipe with a pen (can't remember the procedure's name), getting them out from rubble or fallen trees in a storm.

    Really, it helps if you look at the saved person's lifestyle and occupation. After that, Google hazards they would encounter. You'll probably find tons of real stories about that kind of thing.
     
  4. sinnernear
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    sinnernear Member

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    Well, that's my problem, actually. I don't know what sort of peril to put them in.
     
  5. sinnernear
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    sinnernear Member

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    The saved person is a high school student, as is the person saving him.
     
  6. Ben414
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    Ben414 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Person A gets hit by lightning which somehow allows her to see into the future. As she can see everything that will happen, she becomes depressed and faces an existential crisis. Then, she meets some random high school student whom she has never met before. She immediately becomes enthralled by this normal, mundane, guy. But trouble strikes when she finds out that he will be murdered before he graduates next month. She races against time to try to prevent something which she already knows will happen, all the while questioning her own motives. Eventually, she finds out why she has such an interest in the man--she is the one who will kill him!

    Determined to figure out why she would do such a thing, she befriends the man and looks for any clues of her will-be motives. Although she cannot find any, she does find something else--love. As she learns to love again, she trusts the man with the truth that she can see into the future. Although the man is skeptical, he decides to ask her what he can do to save his mother who is dying of cancer. After she says that she cannot see any future where his mother and him will be happy together, he storms off.

    Although she has not heard anything from the man since he left, she shows up on graduation day hoping to see him. He finds her during the ceremony and pulls her away from the event to talk alone. When alone, he pulls a gun on her and tells her to tell him how to save his mother. She repeats that he can't save her. A fight ensues, and the gun accidentally shoots the man and kills him. Just then, she can see why the man and his mother could never have been happy; she will recover, but he was always destined to die. Unable to cope with what has happened, she immediately leaves the ceremony. It is unclear to the reader as to whether she knew what was going to happen next, but she gets hit by a truck as she is crossing a street and dies.

    Disclaimer: If somebody wants to use this story, I totally want a special thanks at the beginning of the novel and royalties.
     
  7. Okon
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    Okon Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's awful that this comes to mind, but... school shooting?

    Better yet, send them on a field trip to somewhere dangerous. The saved might almost fall down Niagra Falls, or get separated from the group during a hike and attacked by a cougar.
     
  8. thewordsmith
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    thewordsmith Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm sorry to sound like Captain Negative here but, you really shouldn't let the 'crisis' define your story. It sounds as though you are just beginning this piece but haven't fully thought it out. You've got fragments and bits and pieces but you haven't really fully developed the whole storyline.

    Is the crux of the story that the two are paired in some way because of the life-saving event? Is it the catalyst for the story as a whole?

    Then you still have to flesh out the characters, at least in your mind, as to their motives for doing the things they do, the pivotal issues in their current story, and how they came to be at the particular crossroads that puts them together in the first place. Those things will help you to find the best answer to your quandary as to what kind of mischief or danger your character might find him/herself in. If the primary character is rescuer rather than the rescuee, that could have some bearing on the development of circumstances as well. Is this some hero complex that would lead this kid to run around saving people or does he just have an innate sense of right and wrong and he moves in on instinct to help? Or, is it the person he is saving that moves him to act? Has he secretly had the hots for her and just happened to witness the catalytic event because he was watching her?

    Does the event have to happen at school? Beyond the school campus is a world of possibilities to consider. A bank robbery gone wrong and somebody gets shot. Even an untrained person with a bit of self-composure would be able to handle first aid - a tourniquet for extremity bleeding, arterial bleeds - apply direct pressure. A neck shot might be far more serious at the outset because depletion of O2 to the brain, organs will start shutting down because the brain isn't working properly sending signals to the body so it's important to get the bleeding slowed as much as possible and keep the person as calm as possible until first responders arrive. Shock? Lay the person down, elevate the feet, talk to them, try to keep them relaxed and slow their breathing. If their skin feels cold and/or clammy, cover them up.

    Or getting hit by a wayward object; choking on something and a Heimlich maneuver turns the victim's face from blue and purple to natural again? There are almost endless possibilities. it all depends upon your characters, their personalities, and their environment. Once you get to know them better, you may find the solution to your question finds itself!

    Good luck. Keep us posted on your progress.
     
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  9. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I agree with @thewordsmith. It sounds as if you really haven't thought through much of the story at all. Most life-threatening situations have immediate and obvious solutions - being pulled out of the way of an oncoming car, bus or truck, being grabbed before falling over a ledge, being pulled into shelter out of hail of gunfire - an little imagination should get you there. Could it be that you have gotten hung up on this detail because you haven't yet pulled together your idea for the story as a whole? If so, I suggest a long, solitary walk, run, bike ride or swim to get the creative juices flowing.
     
  10. cutecat22
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    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    Tracheotomy (sp)
     
  11. cutecat22
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    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    or donating a kidney
     
  12. thewordsmith
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    thewordsmith Contributing Member Contributor

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    Your spelling's just fine but it may also be referred to as a tracheostomy. -ostomy refers to the surgical opening for a vacuum tube, breathing tube, drainage bag (colostomy) or any other such external appliance or the act of creating such a surgical opening. (Short speak trach.)

    A tracheotomy is a pretty touchy area and, in the hands of someone whose only exposure is the Hollywood glitz version, can be just as deadly as the cause of the obstruction. There are several plates of muscle across and around the throat/trachea. The trick is to find those muscles, one section at a time, and cut the small incision along and between the bands of muscle. This is important for two reasons. Cutting across the muscle severs the muscle impeding the possibility of the muscle healing itself. Cutting parallel to the strands of muscle leaves the muscle essentially intact so that it can, eventually, heal. It also allows the muscle to close around the breathing tube (pen, straw, or other open tube structure used to open the airway) to help hold it in place.

    The real trick with a trach is that you'd better be damned sure it is a tracheal obstruction before you go gouging somebody's throat with a pen knife and not a piece of sandwich stuck in the throat that could be more readily dislodged with a properly performed Heimlich maneuver. And it is certainly not something to try unless there is absolutely no other option.
     
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