five senses

Studying and Art

A writer’s life is made of millions of minute observations which we then try to successfully capture in words. Writers want (don’t we?) to infuse our sentences and paragraphs with the five senses to convey what’s going on around us. Not all five at the same time on every single page! But woven throughout the story, whether it’s flash fiction or an epic Sci-Fi, we use the senses to envelope the reader within our world.

Paintings and photographs invoke the sense of sight, gardening and cooking the senses of touch and taste and smell, while music and the wind and the wandering rivers or brooks or streams give us sound.

Let Us Feast

photo by Juan Ignacio Tapia from Unsplash

photo by Juan Ignacio Tapia from Unsplash

Writing a novel is a feast because an author wants to lay claim to and use all five physical senses in our story. We want to help readers crawl into our imagination, into a world they maybe have or have not ever dreamed or thought of, to take readers outside of the normal, routine life and live in the skin of another being.

There is of course, more to the world than the concrete, the physical, which we take in through our eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and touch.

There are the emotions evoked, the spirituality that gives meaning. These are sometimes hidden deep within the subtext of a story but in other stories may be very visible.

So, in lieu of writing on my story, at least at this moment, I am studying:

All is fodder, as Barbara O’Neal shares in her Writer Seeks Experiences column on Writer Unboxed.

We never know where the mysterious unconscious will lead us as we gather bits and bobs of lived experiences and attentiveness so that we may craft stories that will enthrall ourselves and our audiences.