I love flowers–all kinds of flowers. But my favorites are lilacs, peonies, irises, daffodils–and wildflowers. And roses. Okay–the bottom line is, I love flowers. I feel good just looking at a pretty bouquet, or even a single flower. Just think–they start as a little seed and bloom into something that brings a lot of happiness to us. Flowers are used for both happy occasions and sad times. Flowers mirror our moods and they have different meanings. Roses signify love; lily of the valley is popular in bridal bouquets; carnations are symbolic of pride; daisies are symbolic of innocence; and on and on.
Words are bouquets to writers. We carefully choose the word that we want to use to express what we are thinking, and trying to describe. We HAVE to choose the perfect word to convey our meaning to the reader or our story will be lost. In my novel, “When Shadows Linger,” I carefully selected the descriptive words that I wanted to use to describe a New England town. My goal was for my readers to be able to envision themselves walking down Main Street in a small town; in this case it was Middlebury, Vermont. Having been there and fallen in love with Middlebury, I was able to do that. And I am very proud of that accomplishment.
In “My Name is Rebecca: A Novelette,” I improved the descriptions of the characters in the story. Not their physical characteristics, but who they were and how they “felt.” What was it like for a family to leave their home country in the early 1900s and come to a strange place? What were their fears? And what were their dreams?
My Bouquet of Words is plentiful. There is no shortage and the bouquet is with me all of the time. I can reach in and grab the one that will convey the meaning that I am trying to get across to my readers. And like a bouquet of mixed flowers, the possibilities of arranging them are endless. Like flowers, our stories grow from single words to sentences, to paragraphs, to pages, and finally to the place where we want our readers to be. So, when you sit down to work on your book, make sure that your bouquet of words is right there with you. I promise you–it will work for you just as it does for me.