QUICK FIX: Add a splash of colour
(Writers’ Forum June 2008)
Introducing a splash of colour into your writing can really bring it to life. Think of the difference between black and white versus colour when watching a film or looking at photographs. Although monochrome can be very atmospheric, there is nothing like colour to make your writing memorable.
Using colour in your descriptions gives your readers an immediate image to focus upon and hopefully one which will remain in their minds long after the story has been finished. It allows them to use their imagination to really see what you are describing and recreate the scene for themselves.
Top Colour Tips:
• Don’t just use red, green, blue and yellow in your descriptions. Find alternatives such as scarlet, jade, sapphire or buttercup.
• Seize any opportunity to use colour in your descriptions. A few well chosen words can make all the difference to your story.
• Look around you and note down all the varying shades of colour you can see. A forest isn’t just green, it’s a multitude of shades of dark and light with other colours interwoven throughout.
• Colours can be bright or dull. Use their intensity to reflect what’s happening in your story.
• Many colours have traditional associations. For instance, red for passion, green for tranquillity, white for innocence. Use these as an undercurrent throughout your story to give it extra depth and reach your reader on another level.
Colours are all around us all of the time. Colour your writing!