I will thank the Lord with all my heart as I meet with his godly people. How amazing are the deeds of the Lord! All who delight in him should ponder them. Psalm 111:1-2 NLT

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Final Proof that Writers are Weird?

Writers have a lot of fun slipping various literary devices into stories.  We actually delight in some of those troublesome topics in English class like foreshadowing, imagery, symbolism, irony, and satire. It’s one reason, perhaps, why some folks think we’re weird. 

The best literary devices come organically from the story rather than being forced. Many go unnoticed except by the best reading detectives. Occasionally some hit you over the head.

I once wrote a novel set in Texas where each chapter began with a fact about bluebonnets which was symbolic of something that happened in the chapter. Believe me, I researched a lot about bluebonnets when writing that story because the facts had to fit the story and not the other way around!

As a reader, do you notice these literary devices? As a writer, do you look for ways to include them? Or do you simply agree that writers really are weird folks?


  1. I don't consciously use devices. You have to be smart to use that stuff, and my nickname is Mongo.

    To be honest, I usually don't pick up on foreshadowing, symbolism and the like until someone points them out to me. This, after seven years of mentorship from a professional, is perhaps not a good augury.


  2. Well, Andrew, writers want you to enjoy the book most of all!

  3. I'm really into literary devices. I love Charles Dickens' (& Shakespeare's) use of weather to parallel character journeys, John Steinbeck's great parallels between animals and humans struggling in Dust Bowl drought, etc. But, yes, the pure in heart surely have the best seeing eyes of all.

    1. Delores, It makes me want to read anything you write!

  4. Loved this, Teri. I don't set out to use devices, but I have been told that people find symbols in my writing. So I like that. :) Expecially because I'm not writing them in on purpose.

  5. Oh! I'm late!! Love this blog, Teri! I'm like Jeanne, I don't consciously use metaphors and symbols, but sometimes when I'm rereading I find that I have. And Happy Birthday!!

  6. I agree with Pat. Mine happen organically as well.