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Embrace the Season: How to Use Summer in Your Writing

 I decided to write a whole series on summer writing. This post is the second summer writing post. I have always written much more in the summer than at other times of year. 

How is the photo of Eilat from this week? The food truck festival in Jerusalem photo? 

Feel free to use these photos as writing prompts. Glaze them with your own memories.

On to today's post...

Embrace the Season: How to Use Summer in Your Writing

Summer is a season that evokes a multitude of sensations, emotions, and memories. It's a time of warmth, freedom, and adventure. As a writer, you can harness the essence of summer to enhance your storytelling, create vivid scenes, and develop your characters. Here are some tips on how to incorporate summer into your writing:

1. Set the Scene with Sensory Details
  • Visuals: Describe the bright, golden sunlight, the lush green of trees, and the vibrant colors of summer flowers. Use the contrast of long days and short nights to set the mood.
  • Sounds: Capture the sounds of summer – the buzz of cicadas, the laughter of children playing, the distant hum of lawnmowers, and the rhythmic crash of ocean waves.
  • Smells: Invoke the scents of freshly cut grass, blooming flowers, sunscreen, barbecue smoke, and salty sea air.
  • Textures: Talk about the warmth of the sun on skin, the gritty feeling of sand between toes, the coolness of a summer breeze, and the stickiness of melted ice cream.

2. Leverage Seasonal Activities
  • Outdoor Adventures: Incorporate activities like hiking, swimming, camping, and road trips. These can be used to develop character relationships and advance the plot.
  • Festivals and Events: Use summer festivals, fairs, parades, and outdoor concerts as vibrant backdrops for key scenes or turning points in your story. I include a Jerusalem food truck fair photo here as an example. 
  • Relaxation and Leisure: Show characters lounging by the pool, having picnics, gardening, or reading in a hammock to illustrate their personalities and dynamics.

3. Explore Themes of Growth and Change
  • Personal Growth: Summer is often a time of transition, such as moving to a new place, starting a new job, or embarking on personal quests. Use this season to highlight your characters' growth and self-discovery.
  • Coming-of-Age: Summer can be a powerful backdrop for coming-of-age stories, emphasizing the journey from childhood to adulthood through the lens of summer adventures and challenges.
  • Transformation: Utilize the transformative power of summer – from the renewal of nature to personal transformations, highlighting changes in your characters' lives and relationships.

4. Create Contrasts
  • Heat vs. Cool: Use the oppressive heat of summer to create tension, then provide relief with cool moments, whether it's a refreshing swim or an air-conditioned sanctuary.
  • Light vs. Dark: Play with the long days and short nights to explore themes of clarity and mystery. Daytime can be used for clarity and revelations, while night can hold secrets and intrigue.

5. Invoke Summer Emotions
  • Nostalgia: Tap into readers' own summer memories by creating nostalgic moments that resonate with universal experiences – like first loves, family vacations, or childhood freedom.
  • Joy and Freedom: Highlight the carefree and joyous aspects of summer. Use these feelings to uplift your narrative or provide a stark contrast to darker elements.
  • Melancholy and Yearning: While summer is often joyful, it can also evoke a sense of longing or melancholy, especially as it comes to an end. Use this to add depth and complexity to your characters' emotions.

6. Use Weather to Enhance the Plot
  • Heatwaves: A heatwave can add physical strain and urgency to your story, affecting your characters' actions and decisions.
  • Summer Storms: Thunderstorms can serve as dramatic plot devices, creating sudden conflict or bringing about critical turning points.
  • Drought or Abundance: Use weather conditions to reflect the internal states of your characters or the overall tone of your story.

Incorporating the essence of summer into your writing can enrich your narrative, making it more immersive and engaging for readers. Whether you're writing a light-hearted romance, an intense thriller, or a reflective memoir, the spirit of summer can be your guide to new and exciting work.

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Sunday, 14 July 2024

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