J is for... Jealousy

Damm you Waag Jones!
Jealousy is one of the fundamental human emotions. History teaches us that man, upon first walking on 2 feet and learning to communicate, was in a constant struggle to keep up with the Joneses.

Waag Jones's cave was bigger, he had a fancier club, his animal skins were always from predators, not diseased herbivores like your patched hides.. he was taller, faster, stronger, and had all his teeth.  All the females would line up to get knocked on the head by his club and drug back to his cave by their hair, but they'd run from you.

How you hated Waag, how you wanted his life.  So you hatched a scheme to have a saber-tooth tiger follow you into his cave late at night and let him devour Waag..

... ahh the machinations of man.

Jealousy is a part of human nature. It is in every part of our society. Jealousy over how someone looks, how rich they are, where they work, what they drive, what they wear, who they date/marry, their house, their possessions.. any characteristic that can be used to describe a person will cause jealousy.

I'll wager that there's something that you're jealous of right now, and you may not even be fully aware of it.. but if you spend some time, you'll think of it.

So with jealousy being so prevalent in our lives and culture, how can you ever write a story that doesn't include some?  Is the bad guy evil because he's jealous? Is the good guy torn and with a dark side because he's jealous? Is the side-kick secretly jealous of the love and adoration the hero gets? Is the love interest jealous of the other part in the love triangle that seems to usually exist in these stories?

Jealousy can be anything you want it to be, motivation, plot stirrer, catalyst for change, secret, even redeeming quality, once overcome.

So.. how can you inject jealousy into your story to add some spice, and depth, to your characters?


  1. What a great post! Actually I just submitted some flash fiction last night where jealousy leads to something very bad indeed....!

    And don't worry, not all women are impressed by a fancy club!

  2. That picture in the corner is brilliant, sir. :)

    Jealousy. Such a little monster. You summed it up nicely.


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