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Seasonal Sensations

By Remy Benoit

As a writer, everything must feed your writing.

It is autumn here in Louisiana, but it is 73 out there today with real high humidity and a promise of thunderstorms. We have gone weeks without rain and do need it.
The vast majority of days here are very bright, so an overcast day comes as a kind of visual relief. Yet today I am rather disoriented as it is the first day of going back to Standard Time.

The time of day just doesn't feel right yet.

Which led me to thinking that you might want to start developing the impact of the weather on your story and characters. For a practice session with that try just writing your gut feelings about the following topics:

summer rain

light rain

"frog choking rain"



autumn rain

freezing rain


the first snow of the season

the tenth snow of the season


ice on the road

ice in a glass

What are the positive things that come to mind with these words; what are the negatives?

Write about them separately and then think about what intrigues you, enhances you, or makes you ill at ease about them...

let these sensations come to life in your characters.

As I sat here writing this, I looked out the window and called my son. A hawk sat in the live oak outside. As it flew away we noted it had a small animal of some kind in its beak.

We are so removed from survival living in most cases. How do you react to a hawk with a live animal in its beak for supper?

It is hunting season here - how would you feel about having to hunt and preserve your food for the winter; grind acorns for flour; experience the above elements living in a lean-to, a cave, a branch woven hut?

How would that impact on your feelings about seasonal sensations?

Happy writing!



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This item is part of historian, author, editor, and educator Remy Benoit's ongoing weblog for Veterans, writers, students, and others who believe in learning from and making history; including thousands of articles and posts and the free writing seminar, Using History for Healing and Writing.

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