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Stronger Writing: Use Your (Characters’) Senses!

Cartoon image of a woman with red hair, surrounded by images of a human hand, blue eye, mouth, nose, and ear to illustrate the five sensesIf you’ve been writing fiction for more than, oh, about twenty minutes, you’ve no doubt been advised to use at least three of the five senses to bring your prose to life. Most narrative describes what the characters see and hear, but adding smell, taste, or sensation can enrich the sense of place and elevate the reading experience.

Not all sensory information is created equal, of course. The best sensory information comes straight from the character’s experience to the reader’s experience. It comes from within the character’s point of view. Weak sensory information comes from a step outside the character’s point of view.

How Do I Know if my Sensory Information is Strong or Weak?

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