Consider using imagery to convey the tone of a scene. It’s fine to select a universal image, such as fluffy white clouds or birds chirping to set a happy mood. But you can elevate the scene by picking an image that connects in a specific way to your story or reinforces one of your character’s traits. Then, examine how you can use that same image to depict a change in tone by the ending. For example, if that happy scene ends on a sad note, transform those fluffy white clouds into dark thunderclouds, or have those chirping birds fall silent. Using thoughtful imagery not only reinforces the emotional impact you want your story to have, but also broadens your reader’s experience of the world you’ve created.
Tag Archives: emotional resonance
When my daughter found out that a new book in the Harry Potter franchise was being published this summer, she insisted we pre-order it so she could start reading it the day of its release. I explained to her that the book wouldn’t be like the original series she devoured in elementary school. “It’s a play,” I said. “The ‘book’ is the play’s script. It’s not going to read like the other stories.” But that didn’t matter to my 11-year-old. All she cared about was the fact that she was going to get to read more about her beloved Harry, even if he was now an adult and the dad of one of the play’s main characters. So we placed our Amazon order and counted the days until the book’s arrival on our doorstep. Continue reading
Over the past month, the WriteOwls have been debating flashbacks in novels. Much of the writing advice we read cautions against using flashback scenes because they often do more harm than good. By pulling readers out of the storyline, you risk them getting confused about what’s happening and giving up on the story altogether. Despite the warnings, many of us feel compelled to include them in our stories for various reasons. So the question has become how to write them so they inform our readers while keeping them turning the pages. Continue reading
Before you read this post, please note that it contains spoilers for the novels I reference.
I look forward to opening my Christmas gift from my sister-in-law each year because I know the box will always contain books. She has a knack for picking out page turners that take me on emotional roller coaster rides that I usually need a tissue box by my side to get through. And I love every weepy word of it. Continue reading
I finished one of my favorite series’ last week for the second time.
At the end of it, I still wasn’t ready to leave that world, those characters. The adventures and the jokes, the romances and the rivalries. I just wasn’t ready. So I did the sensible thing. I picked my favorite book from the series and settled in for a third read. A day and half later, I was right back where I started, yearning for more books in the series, but knowing it was well and truly time to move on.
But what do you follow that up with? I tried a YA trilogy. Highly recommended. A best-seller. Gushed over by my friends. It sounded like a sure thing. And maybe it would’ve been had I not just finished reading these other books that I loved so very much. The fact is, it was built well. It had potential and probably was building up to something that warranted the hype, but I wasn’t enjoying the ride. After about ten percent of the book, I put it down. Continue reading