I'm having trouble writing a scene in my book where the main character is about to be pulled into an enchantment before her friend saves her. A bit of backstory- the item that is about to enchant her is an opal necklace, and it's written in the main character's point of view, past tense. I was thinking about writing it similar to the scene in Harry Potter: Order of the Phoenix when he is near the cloak in the Dep. of mysteries, i.e. my character hears voices and is drawn to it somehow, but I'm not sure how to write it.

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    What time frame are we talking about? minutes? days? weeks? A whole novel? It can be anything from borderline demonic possession to a gentle seduction. Is the necklace sentient? Does it cause pleasure?
    – DWKraus
    Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 23:44
  • The necklace is at a vendor's stall, and it's just a brief scene. I want to keep it in because it has hints later on in the novel, but the scene itself is just minutes long in real-time. The necklace itself is alluring in some way to the character. Commented Sep 7, 2020 at 23:51

2 Answers 2


Enchant with words:

Normally, flowery words are over the top used often, but in this case I'd bunch them up. Don't just describe enchantment, try to enchant the reader, make them feel compelled to pick it up and caress it. Engage all senses, and make something up if there isn't the actual detail.

For example, it could be smooth and vibrate on fingers, shine from the gold and the stone can glisten in the light, it can evoke the scent of lavender from no where, and evoke the memory of music. Make the effect feel out of place, and the character should need distraction to stop admiring the thing. The character could find their thoughts going back to it or having a dream where they are someone else wearing it.

If it is evil, though, give some warning. The dream is of something bad happening to the person wearing it, or there is a sharp point on it that cuts the character so they bleed (although the blood can be sweet as they kiss the drop away).


Try drawing from your own life. Try remembering a time when you found an object that really affected you. If you can remember seeing a toy as a child, and relate the why of wanting it, or an image in real life or on the web. It could even be something you like to eat when you're very hungry. These kind of memories will help you find the emotion of wanting or curiosity involving the necklace.

Next could be tying those emotions to the character's experience and past as they examine or handle the object. This can cement the experience for the reader since even though they are unlikely to have ever found a necklace in a bazaar that reminded them of their loving Aunt Lucy and the terrific Liver and Onions she made for the character, the specifics from your story will suggest specifics from their lives.

POV can make this easier or harder. First Person from the to-be-enchanted character POV lets you write using direct and indirect thoughts in a natural way to make the moment more detailed and intimate. 3rd Person from the character will raise the bar on the challenge. Telling the scene from the POV of the person that breaks the enchantment lets you describe the outward effects and behaviors of the about-to-be-enchanted character and that character can observe what is right and what is off about their behavior and figure out that something is wrong.

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