I think in metaphor, and write in metaphor, A LOT. During another feedback session with my reader metaphor has come up again. The tool can be useful, but as with much in life, I’ve gone to the extreme while using them to paint my pictures. Maybe the tangle of metaphors is my way of doing things with language that my body is in capable of, language is much more flexible than I’ll ever be. And yes, I had to fight to avoid metaphor in my last sentence.
What is too much metaphor in YOUR view? What other methods do you find effective in making a scene come alive? (For the record, I am being more mindful of my urge to rely on metaphorical imagery, and I almost did it again.) The habit is almost ingrained in my mind to the point that it doesn’t register. Maybe it has to do with my starting in poetry, but something tells me there are many poets out there who have an easier time, moderating the linguistic techniques they use.
I can also see a possibility that I turned to metaphor for scholastic (non-technical) writing in order to keep myself awake. Elementary school testing, and overly restricted essay requirements in later years, led me to think I didn’t like writing. I was constantly worried about where to place my commas among other aspects of “Conventions”-as my teachers used to call them. What’s more, writing by hand was difficult due to lack of fine motor skills and reaching all the keys from “Home Row” on a keyboard was another battle for the same reason. (Thought of yet another metaphor here.) Metaphor was a way to make writing fun again, and worth the struggle.
As my reader continues to go through my first draft she will find many more metaphors. Many will be metaphorically killed. Hey, moderation is okay! But my, “The Peristaltic Bowels” TV series metaphor will live on, even if I have to do some linguistic “re-casting.” It’s just that good. You’ll see 😉