Thursday, May 5, 2011

Writing Emotions

image courtesy Kim Smith
Have you ever had to write a scene where your character was despicably hateful? What did you use to describe hate? How about joy? Indescribably joyfulness is hard to do too.

In fact, writing emotion is hard no matter what particular feeling it is. I thiink, in this instance of writing, the devil is in the details.

What makes you feel a character's anger? Is it that clenched fist? Or is it the red face? Well, before you get too carried away, remember that cliches are worst than telling the emotion to the reader.

For some reason, cliched writing goes hand-in-hand with emotions. Here are a few: red-faced with anger, saw red, heart pounding with rage, clenched fist, giddy with happiness, satisfied sigh, green with envy.

Well, that's just for starters, I am sure you have your own list.

But when you write emotional scenes be sure to make the reader a part of the wallpaper. We want to be in the midst of the matter. Get us emotionally involved and we will stay forever.


Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Excellent points, Kim. I find that the older I get, and the more traumas I go through personally, the easier it is to write the horror, sadness, joy, love, etc.

Nathan Weaver said...

Thanks for this...

I would say emotion is easier to write when it is a first-person narrative, because the emotions become much more personal. But all-in-all I think the best thing to do is to pour your own experiences into the emotions.