Once More With Feeling

The job of the writer is to make the reader feel something, whether it’s joy or hope, disgust or sadness. But engaging the reader on an emotional level is not always as easy as it seems…if you’ve ever wondered how to make your fiction more emotionally affecting, then this is the workshop for you.

Often, things that are deeply personal to us serve as the inspiration for writing, but they don’t always translate onto the page. Talking about emotions directly, especially through abstraction or analysis can have the effect of holding the reader at arm’s length. But don’t worry, there are lots of techniques to draw the reader in and carry them along with the writing.

In this one-day workshop, we will be exploring the different ways emotions can be conveyed in your fiction through imagery, sensual detail, memory and bodily reactions.

While constantly surrounded by stimuli, it is emotion that makes us pick out the details – the images, the scents, the associations – that give our writing a particular tone. When Henry James said, “landscape is character” he meant that when we look out onto a landscape what we see reflected back to us is our deepest emotional selves. Two people in different emotional states looking at the same house will not see the same thing.

In this one-day workshop, we will look at some different examples of writing that brilliantly manage emotion. We will discuss what the pieces make us feel and identify the techniques used by the author to achieve this effect. Then we will do a series of exercises that will help you learn how to engage the emotions of the reader and how to colour the tone of your writing using sensory detail and imagery. We will look at different ways of showing a character’s emotional state without telling the reader explicitly. This workshop is suitable for writers of all levels and hopefully will leave you with lots of ideas of how to make your writing go that little bit deeper.

Laura Kaye grew up in a village in Oxfordshire. After working at the BBC for eight years in the Music department she took a year out to study creative writing at Goldsmiths and in 2017 her debut novel English Animals was published by Little, Brown – part satire of English country life, part lesbian love story with a bit of taxidermy thrown into the mix. She lives in London and has just finished writing a second novel.

Email hello@thereaderberlin.com to sign up for a spot!

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