Writing With Real Life Emotions
I’m one of those people who sees a sunset and cries while whispering, “It’s so beautiful”. I’m someone who will get emotional if I see a child who is outrageously happy about getting pizza for lunch. I’ve felt rage that seemed as if my body would explode, I’ve experienced heartbreak that felt like my heart had dropped from my chest, down my leg, and split through the soles of my feet, dragging behind me, only attached by dirt-covered arteries.
I know I’m not the only one who feels so strongly and as an author, I do my best to articulate these emotions in my writing. For many, this is difficult to do.
The three main reasons are:
- As a society, we are generally disconnected from our bodies and how we truly feel.
- We don’t encourage each other to express our true emotions. Every day we ask one another, how are you? And our response 95% of the time is, “I’m good.”
- We don’t have a vast enough vocabulary to facilitate the wide range of emotions we tend to feel as human beings. We know, good, bad, happy, sad, angry, frustrated….and some people may use melancholy, but it’s rare.
Writing with our emotions brings authenticity to our stories. It helps readers connect with the characters or stories that we share with them.
Last week, I held a Medium Day session helping the participants to connect and identify their emotions and create something truly unique.
There are four basic steps to consider when beginning to write with real-life emotions.
Presence is a key ingredient to recognizing emotions. What do I mean when I say presence? Do I mean, you simply physically being in a space? You ARE here. You’re technically present. But are you mentally, emotionally, physically, and energetically here? Is your body here, but your mind is thinking about what you will have for dinner? Is your energy still aggravated at the stranger that cut you off this morning and now your nervous system is still all jacked up?
Presense allows you to not only recognize when you are experiencing emotions, but what you are feeling as well.