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Emotive Writing


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  • 2 weeks later...

I think it's difficult because one thing : We can progress everytimes we produce a text. The balance of length of the writing and his descriptions is important and difficult to obtain. As I am beginner, it's maybe me who need to ask that to you ?

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Some people think that by making the characters cry, laugh etc they directly tranfer feeling on the reader. I don't think that is efficient. Before being able to achieve duch a result it is very important to form a bond between the characters and the readers. Once it is done, once the reader truly cares, it comes easier as there is empathy. Creating an atmosphere is also essential! It takes lot of practice, too.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Administrator

Generally, when I write emotive scenes in my stories, I try to picture myself in that situation.

I also find that listening to certain songs can help a lot. Slow funeral music works great for writing sad scenes.

And yeah, I agree with the previous points. The build up towards that scene can really impact how emotive it actually is.

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  • 1 month later...
On 8/11/2016 at 2:52 PM, AquilaTempestas said:

Every story has those moments in which you want your readers to feel despair, sadness, joy etc etc.

How do you manage this? How do you try and convey emotion through writing? 

I'm not a good writer, let this be known. But I think I can call this my specialty :P Because I write a lot of emotive stuff xD 

There are usually two ways to express emotions in my accordance

  1. Actual Emotive Writing
  2. Expressive writing

To explain method number one, let us consider an example:

James died, Jenna was sad about it...

Now, by having a strong vocabulary, you can easily use words like mournful, and also they would progress towards emotions, slowly, I mean real slowly.

"James felt a sudden jolt of pain as he breathed out his final words. Jenna looked at him with a sorrowful expression, as James breathed his final breath and mortally disappeared from Jenna's life forever."

In a nutshell, method number one is the novel writer's method.

Known practitioners of Method no.1: Indigo Jupiter, AquilaTempstas, Sakura Alexia, Blue Rose (Misty), JK Rowling, Richard Castle.

Now for method number two.

This method is for people who prefer writing with less great vocabulary, or are really good at feeling. emotions. In this method, usually, many words are used to describe one moment of feeling... A lot of italicization got expressions and stress, and the writer makes a certain atmosphere that makes the readers actually feel the emotions. They also tend to use a lot of third person view.

James was obviously going to disappear from Jenna's life forever, she could just feel it! His final breaths were a signal strong enough to tell us that he was definitely dying. Jenna couldn't bear it, hell, no one could bear it. Not even you or I... As James felt a sudden rush of pain thought his body, he closed his eyes for the final time, seeing his beloved for the final time, and going into what could be for us, a better place...

Known Practitioners of method no.2: Myself, Mick Foley and Chris Jericho.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I think @MasKaiHilFantic provided the best explanation around this thread, and I do want to insert a few examples.

Actual Emotive Writing:

Saeun took one look at Sungmin's morose expression and could tell he was immensely distressed. She took the phone in his hands, suspicious that it was yet another media article, filled with hate comments directed at them both. Glaring, she threw the phone on the ground in disgust and immediately leaned in to comfort her husband. But as much as she wanted to cheer Sungmin up, Saeun had to admit that she did not really know the kind of bitter regret he had to be feeling, to be a married idol singer who had wrongly betrayed his beloved fans. 

(I tried. I really did. But it was my first time trying this pairing out and I'm still reeling from the article mentioned above. This is how I usually write, by the way, if I care a lot about the characters and the fic itself.)

Expressive Writing:

It was like a bomb had detonated inside. Jaejoong couldn't believe what Yunho was saying, much less what he was doing. It was like he had completely forgotten his past! Jaejoong decided to try one last time, as if a confirmation was the one thing he needed to make himself feel better. "Wh-where did you come from, again?" The words came out of Jaejoong's mouth more awkwardly than he had intended, and Jaejoong immediately regretted asking the question, even more so when Yunho replied, confused, "I already said I was from Blackthorn, in Johto."

(Aaaaand this is how I write when I'm in a rush. Note the decrease in quality of emotive writing!)

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Every story has those moments in which you want your readers to feel despair, sadness, joy etc etc.

How do you manage this? How do you try and convey emotion through writing? 

You have to maintain some distance from you and your work and keep in mind that sometimes, your audience doesn't feel as strongly as you do. So here's the thing. It's the way you frame it. A person who goes through a breakup and has vivid flashbacks to promises that their partner made like..."It will be just the two of us against the world." 

It's how you relate that scene to the rest of the story. Then it's just a matter of technique. 

Don't overdo it with trying to express anything because too much detail could numb your reader's interest, "like gosh, I get it, they broke up, they need to get over it"

At the same time, too little could leave too much interpretation up for readers and they could start feeling confused, "Like isnt there supposed to be more reaction to this? What do they feel?"

So what's the solution? You can't make anyone feel anything. I get a vast number of reviews from "I bawled like a baby reading this" to "I hope she doesn't turn into a wimp".

Now if you read this and tell me, yeah fuck those reviewers. Sure. Their feelings don't matter. Agreed. What matters is how it relates to the plot. How much hope or despair they feel is directly related to how well you frame it. 

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Like pyro said, framing is VITAL in every aspect of your storytelling. 

If your characters are well-crafted and sympathetic, if their responses are genuine, if their internal dialogue is handled well, and if all is framed the right way, I don't see the trouble with presenting a story that will elicit the reaction you are looking for from readers. 

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I'm also a speechwriter, so I tend to use ethos, logos, pathos.

 

Basically, I try to answer the questions, what opinion/emotions am I projecting or feeling (ethos)?

 

What logic am I using to create those opinions/emotions (basically, why should my reader feel this way, logos)?

 

And finally, what emotions/opinions do I want to (or am likely) to invoke within my audience (how can I project what I am feeling onto them/how do I want them to feel, pathos).

 

Would these three things, it's easy to imagine exactly what I want to do with a scene, even if I'm not entirely sure how my audience will react.

 

It's also where noting that everyone reacts to emotional scenes in different ways. Something that might make someone feel intense emotion may elicit no response from someone else. In that case, it's not necessarily that the emotional scene was written badly so much as every reader is different. It's something to keep in mind so that one doesn't feel disappointed by a reaction.

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  • 4 years later...
  • Administrator
On 11/16/2016 at 6:42 AM, onewiththewheels said:

I'm also a speechwriter, so I tend to use ethos, logos, pathos.

 

Basically, I try to answer the questions, what opinion/emotions am I projecting or feeling (ethos)?

 

What logic am I using to create those opinions/emotions (basically, why should my reader feel this way, logos)?

 

And finally, what emotions/opinions do I want to (or am likely) to invoke within my audience (how can I project what I am feeling onto them/how do I want them to feel, pathos).

 

Would these three things, it's easy to imagine exactly what I want to do with a scene, even if I'm not entirely sure how my audience will react.

 

It's also where noting that everyone reacts to emotional scenes in different ways. Something that might make someone feel intense emotion may elicit no response from someone else. In that case, it's not necessarily that the emotional scene was written badly so much as every reader is different. It's something to keep in mind so that one doesn't feel disappointed by a reaction.

Weird. I thought I had replied to this. Apparently not.

 

But yeah. That's  a good set of questions to ask yourself to help guide the process.

 

As for me when I write heavy emotional scenes I try to put myself into the character's shoes as different people cope and react in different ways. This can be quite difficult at times especially when I'm working with a character who would react in a totally different than I would.

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  • 2 years later...

I use a handful of adjectives to drive the point home. I limit myself in adding too much flourish as it'll oversaturate the scene, stripping it of its core point.

Emotive writing comes to me naturally as it's based off the way I talk; I make sure my feelings are communicated vividly without any room for doubt. I don't picture myself in the said scene, rather, I cycle through my emotions to find feelings to fit the scene. May not be 100% accurate but something that's close enough and enough to translate into written words.

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  • Administrator

I usually reflect on some part of my life that relates to the scene. For example, if I'm writing about grief over a loved one, I'll tap into the buried memories in my mind and 'relieve' that moment. It normally leaves me feeling a bit depressed afterwards but it does help make the scene I'm writing about genuine. If I'm writing about a more positive emotion then again, I tap into those emotions where I truly felt genuine strong happy emotion. 

I'll see the scene play out like a movie in my head. It's pretty awesome.

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  • Administrator
33 minutes ago, Ace of Spies said:

I seriously struggle with emotive writing. I feel like my characters just come across as whiny babies

It's all in your head!

What can also help is watching your favourite characters from movies and tv shows and taking note of how they react. 

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  • Board Moderator
36 minutes ago, AquilaTempestas said:

It's all in your head!

What can also help is watching your favourite characters from movies and tv shows and taking note of how they react. 

very wise, as expected of the goat

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