Friday, February 3, 2012

Bringing Smells Into Your Book

How many memories do you have wrapped up in a smell? Favorite cookies from Grandma? Perfume sprays from that special night?
The other day, I was cooking dinner and I had chicken broth in one pan and vanilla extract in another. The two combinations together reminded me of Thanksgiving and I suddenly got a familiar yearning for family.
Scents have a way of moving on our emotions the same way sights can draw us into another world or time. Don't overlook the power of scent to spur your imagination while writing. If a certain smell -perfume- elicits feelings of romance, and the character in your story is in love, spritz our favorite fragrance while you write. Are you writing a home scene where everyone is happy, comfy, and cozy? Bake some chocolate chip cookies and let the scent circulate around you. At best, light a candle you love. Your home will smell wonderful and your creative nose will inspire your pen.

Engaging Auditory Readers

How do you engage audio learners in your story? Many readers are visual people. They like to see things, and thus enjoy reading. (Which, by the way, I am a visual!) Audio people enjoy books on tape, music, and all things connected to the ears!

In order to draw your reader into the world you created on the written page, it is most imperative you entice them with their senses. Engagement of your readers happens with sound words. This is otherwise none as onomatopoeia: words that sound like are written. Please include words with flavor, resonance, texture, aromas, and pictures in the mind. Your readers will come back again and again when they know they can step into your world and feel as though they are actually living in the pages of your book.
Call out to your readers in a way they can relate!

Here is a wonderful list of sound words for inspiration:
clink, clang, clatter
boom, burst, explode
crunch, crackle, crinkle
gurgle, garbled, groan
murmur, cooed, whispered
plunk, splash, dripped
sizzle, splatter, splat
rumble, rick-a-shay, echoed
rattle, bang, creaked
whiz, whee!, whoa
thud, ker-plunk, drizzle
zing, zip, zoomed