Meteoric Metaphors - writercize #112

Who doesn't love a good chat about the weather?  It's a brilliant topic - easy, impersonal and every person can relate.  A trite boring, perhaps, but nonetheless... a safe thing to fall back on when all else fails.

Today as I was on the road, I was watching the gray skies and thinking about how closely related weather is to mood, and, more to the point, how accurately we can describe the way we feel or someone's personality by comparing it to the weather.  A meteoric metaphor matches climate with mood for a way to describe your character's psyche at any given point.

Another tool for a writer?  Rather than writing about your character's mind, place your character in a scene where the atmospheric conditions match their situation.  (Confused and angry mind on a stormy day.)  Or, alternatively, place your character in a scene where the atmospheric conditions run exactly counter to their thoughts.  (Confused and angry mind under the bright sun of a summer parade route.)

writercize:  Describe your character's personality or mood using the weather as your inspiration.

Click "read more" for writercize sample response about a person who teeters between anxiety, calm and depression.
writercizer sample response:

On the bad days, when her mind was fast and nervous, thoughts swirled and crashed in Elizabeth's mind, destroying all thoughts and hopes of stability with the frantic twist of a tornado.  On the really bad days, when she sunk deeply into depression, her mind felt like the eighth ward just after Hurricane Katrina, hopeless with the stench of death and poverty, passed over by the outside world and the promise of a safe dwelling.  Even on the good days, when she could smile and enjoy a walk in the park, Elizabeth's mind felt most like a rainbow, glowing with warm, bright reds and oranges melting into the deeper, darker blue and violet shadows, rising towards the sun, but grounded in the dripping aftermath of a heavy rain. 


  1. How did I miss this blog??? I am so happy to be here!!!! *rushes off to explore the site*

  2. After an exciting spring of electrifying court cases and a whirlwind chase to finally nab his wife, Cooper had a blissfully hot summer of a marriage. Like a honeymoon in the tropics that lasted two years until the dismal cold rain of fall finally descended, ripping his wife away. His sadness lingered and festered as he hibernated away from the cold, snowy winter. A new case on the horizon may bring a new spring flower with warmer days to melt the ice in his heart.

    that was fun!

  3. *cough* This not something I'd strongly suggest in manuscripts that go in for queries.

    I've seen more than one agent and editor who say that that's a big no-no. Of course, nothing prevents one from doing it, assuming that you do it well enough to leave any other work with the same weather-matches-emotion scenes in the dust...

  4. Misha - Thanks for the feedback! Nothing on this site is meant to prepare a manuscript or query; it's just writing exercises to get the flow going and look at writing with new eyes each time ... and have a little fun! But, it's always good to put that voice of reason out there when it comes to publishing. :)

    Jolene - Welcome!! Good to have you here. Hope you enjoy it!

    Tara - love it! You got all the seasons in one full sweep. :) Always a pleasure to read your take!


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