1. Thorn
    Offline

    Thorn New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    2

    Forest at night?

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by Thorn, Jan 13, 2015.

    I'm having trouble with this part in my story where the main character takes his girlfriend out to this clearing in the middle of the forest that's filled with fireflies. I'm trying to get a sort of magical feeling across and I don't know how to do it. I have, "When she opened her eyes I heard a small gasp of absolute wonder and excitement..." I could also use help in making that sound better, unless you think that sounds fine.
     
  2. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    Hi Thorn, welcome to the forum.

    How did she show that wonder, besides gasping what did she say?

    There's some interesting descriptions that can be gleaned from this video:
     
    Mckk likes this.
  3. Thorn
    Offline

    Thorn New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    2
    Thank you for the welcome.

    The main character asks her, "So, what do you think?" To which she replies, "It's beautiful, how did you manage to find this place?" She is barely able to contain her excitement, because ever since she was little, she has been mesmerized by fireflies and how they seem to light up the night like the stars in the sky.
     
  4. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    "It's [experiment with some different words], how did you manage to [manage to is a filter that it's better without] find this place?"

    She can tell him about her childhood experience.
     
  5. Thorn
    Offline

    Thorn New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    2
    Okay, any suggestions for a replacement for beautiful? (Describing isn't one of my strong suits)
     
  6. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,605
    Likes Received:
    5,879
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    You have to do some of the work. If I give you my words, they wouldn't be yours.

    read
    use a thesaurus
    watch the video
    practice describing things without using the word, beautiful
    describe a feeling instead of how it looks
    describe her actions instead of her words
     
  7. Thorn
    Offline

    Thorn New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    2
    Okay, thanks!
     
  8. jannert
    Offline

    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    7,807
    Likes Received:
    7,322
    Location:
    Scotland
    Speaking as somebody who used to see lots of fireflies in Michigan as a child, if you're trying to be realistic, they don't live in 'a place.' So finding a place isn't actually what happens. They come out (usually in August) and hang around lots of places. I think it's time of year and possibly weather conditions that bring them out. I seem to remember them coming out at night after a hot day, and when the night itself was still very balmy and warm. I remember sitting in an Adirondack chair watching them, out at a relative's cottage. They were everywhere for a night or two, then they vanished to just a few, then to none. I also saw them along roadsides, near ponds, in fields, etc. They didn't appear in dense woodland, but always in open areas on very dark nights. It wasn't the place that drew them, it was the time of year that produced them. I think the flashing lights are some kind of mating ritual for them.
     
  9. Thorn
    Offline

    Thorn New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    2
    Where I live in Missouri is on the outskirts of a town, so the bright lights tend to drown out the fireflies, and the only way for me to be able to see them is if I go out towards the woods nearby. I'm using where I live as the setting because I know the place well enough to describe it. I remember the past two years that they've came around was sometime in July or August.
     
    Lea`Brooks and jannert like this.
  10. kburns421
    Offline

    kburns421 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2013
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    14
    I think it's both time of year and place, so I don't think that should be a problem. I had only seen fireflies once in my life before that I remembered (I've never lived somewhere that has them), but a few years ago I found out about a state park about a hour away from where I was living where you could stay an hour after dark during firefly season. It was a wooded area, and they seemed to stay among the trees and plants. The other time I saw them it was in a family member's backyard and they were kind of just flying all around us.

    As for the writing, seeing fireflies is wondrous to people who don't see them often. She might gasp, she might be speechless, her eyes might be wide, she might laugh, she might look all around. If they're there as the sun is setting waiting for the fireflies to start lighting up, she'd probably excitedly point to the first one she saw. But the character can't really know that his girlfriend is gasping with wonder and excitement. He can only assume it from her actions and words.
     
  11. CedricMiddorick
    Offline

    CedricMiddorick Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Ireland
    Search YouTube for the music video of "I See the Light - Tangled". Substitute the lanterns with fireflies.
     
    Ivana likes this.
  12. 123456789
    Offline

    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2012
    Messages:
    6,346
    Likes Received:
    3,092

    Well, presumably it's summer time. It's humid and hot but just starting to cool , though not enough to prevent the gf's white moonlit shirt from clinging to her body. There's crickets and stars and flickering fireflies that look like holiday lights. Just focus on the damp t shirt and you'll be fine.
     
  13. Ivana
    Offline

    Ivana Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2015
    Messages:
    255
    Likes Received:
    126
    Location:
    Far side of Unatsu
    :agreed: that scene is truly wonderful.
     
    CedricMiddorick likes this.
  14. matwoolf
    Offline

    matwoolf Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2012
    Messages:
    2,305
    Likes Received:
    2,236
    Location:
    Brighton Heights
    I think you should blindfold her, and she giggles and everything is so perfect: her warm palm, your reassuring direction over twigs. You remove the blindfold and ten thousand fat firy insects fly towards her mouth. She screams, runs away, she hates you, but she has a tomboy sister, and you climb trees together, and she's much nicer and you poke hornets nest with her and poison bears and stuff.
     
    Jenurik Name and CedricMiddorick like this.
  15. Mckk
    Offline

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    4,749
    Likes Received:
    2,534
    Was just thinking that myself!

    Anyway, OP - for myself, I usually describe by feeling the scene. How would you feel if you experienced it? Now pick out the details that awed you, that made a mark in your mind forever, and describe those things. What does the sight remind you of? Tell us.

    And here's the song btw :)

     
    CedricMiddorick likes this.
  16. CedricMiddorick
    Offline

    CedricMiddorick Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Ireland
    I've watched that Tangled scene a million times and yet it still manages to make me smile :3

    OTHER STUFF WORTH CHECKING OUT:
    1. The Fairy Dance from the 2003 version of Peter Pan



    2. The titular firefly scene in the movie "Grave of Fireflies". The rest of the movie is depressing as hell but this scene really shows the wonder someone feels when they see fireflies.

    (unfortunately I can't find a link to that scene but the full movie can be found on YouTube)
     
  17. Mckk
    Offline

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    4,749
    Likes Received:
    2,534
    I don't remember a firefly scene in that film, surprisingly. I've only ever seen it once though - probably the most emotionally disturbing film I've ever seen. Done so well, but never gonna watch it again.
     
  18. CedricMiddorick
    Offline

    CedricMiddorick Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2015
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Ireland
    After the boy and his sister run away from the aunt, they find a field of fireflies. The sister runs around in awe while the boy teaches her how to hold the fireflies by cupping them in his hands.
     
  19. Mckk
    Offline

    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    4,749
    Likes Received:
    2,534
    That sounds really sweet. How come I have zero recollection of this?! *goes to find the scene*
     

Share This Page