A Blind Character

Abbey’s Tale coming soon from The Wild Rose Press

In the novel Abbey’s Tale for which I am currently under contract, my heroine is blind. I have been interested in a blind character since high school when I read The Sky Is Blue. In that novel a sightless Caucasian heroine fall in love with a wonderful, kind African American man. The author cleverly has the readers discover that the hero is non-white at the exact same time that the heroine learns this. Of course, color does not matter to her even though her friend has tried to warn her that having their platonic relationship become romantic will not work. But he has never fully explained the reasons which are societal. The book came out in the 1960s or early 70s, and the reader is forced to do some soul searching and self-assessment about his or her own feelings toward the hero and whether or not those feelings change when his race is revealed. Often the blind “see” better than the sighted what a person is truly like.

In Abbey’s Tale, the heroine is blind from birth and is first interested in the hero because he creates intricate carvings that help her see the world. He is a recluse who has withdrawn from the world because he is often judged by his unattractive, scarred appearance.

The difficulty in writing from the POV of a blind person is that the author can never slip up and describe something visual that the character cannot know. It is challenging to rely on the other four senses, particularly tone of voice, to pick up on another character’s emotions. Touch too is very important as well as smell.




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