Metaphor Ideas

Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by aimeekath, May 9, 2012.

  1. Morkonan

    Morkonan New Member

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    That's a good point.

    But, since this is a Writing Forum, it's also the very type of thing aspiring writers might want to ask about. An accomplished author would have no need for such instruction, while one that is still learning would be hungry for it. Still, I've seen the work of plenty of published authors that proved they're terrible at creating interesting metaphors. It's sad, really. Language is such a beautiful thing and it would make sense that any author would want to paint with an interesting flare, rather than use a tired brush.
     
  2. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Good writing habits should be encouraged from the start. Bad writing habits should be discouraged just as quickly.
     
  3. AmyHolt

    AmyHolt New Member

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    Great comments Morkonan. I think I'll find your strategy useful.
    I'm like Mark in that sometimes I need to hear some ideas to get my own brain working. I suppose sometimes needing help to get started is a weakness I have as a writer (I have many) but I won't let my need to ask for help stop me from pushing forward.
     
  4. ithestargazer

    ithestargazer Active Member

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    I like the idea of thinking in terms of the person/place/thing and relating it back to the context. I think writers sort of do this anyway when they create metaphors but I like seeing it written down like that - makes it seem simpler and can give inspiration when a good metaphor is needed.
     
  5. Morkonan

    Morkonan New Member

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    You're very welcome!

    It's often the case that a writer can't see the pages for the text. You have to step away and get a fresh perspective in order to let new thoughts rise to the top of the bowl, as it were. Sure, not many people can sling about metaphors like a pro. But, even the pros put in a lot of work coming up with their little gems.

    One thing I think people interested in metaphors have to remember - We don't forget the good ones.

    A mind like a steel trap, a heart of iron, the brains of a bag of hammers... These metaphors stick with us because they're darn good! We remember them because they strike a particular nerve and have a lot of cultural meaning wrapped up in them that speaks to us much more than the individual words, themselves. We have so many good metaphors already that it's very hard to think up new ones! So, don't get frustrated that everything you think of has already been used by someone else. Just keep plugging away and stay secure in the knowledge that everything has already been written anyway. The only thing you can do is write it differently and metaphors aren't any exception to that.
     
  6. MarkArellius

    MarkArellius New Member

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    Excellent comments I love to read !
    I'm not even on this forum a week and already getting to know more, little by little, about writing.
    It will take me a long long time to find my style of writing and which audience I want to target exactly, however this is a good start.

    Either metaphors or similes, I would like to create some gems of my own and this forum (to me) can be used as a good source of inspiration. Like brainstorming for a new theatre play :)
     
  7. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Alive in the Superunknown

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    Avoid the cliched metaphors, unless you're trying to depict a character who is mired in cliche -- and even then, have a care. A cliched metaphor is an eyesore. [​IMG]
     
  8. Lightman

    Lightman Active Member

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    Never force a metaphor or simile. If something doesn't come to you naturally, don't take that as license to call forth some ridiculous demonic creature from the pits of metaphorical Hell.
     
  9. Morkonan

    Morkonan New Member

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    I've read several short stories that intentionally used terrible metaphors to evoke humor through absurdity. Some noted authors have written some really wonderful, yet completely absurd, pieces. One that comes to mind is "The Stone Thing" by Michael Moorcock. It pokes fun at heroic fantasy and while not exactly using absurd metaphors, it grabs absurd "fantastic" references and has its way with them. A bundle of laughs, to be sure.

    You know, a thread that was devoted to "absurd metaphors" might be very entertaining and instructive, as well.
     
  10. MarkArellius

    MarkArellius New Member

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    Thanks guys, these tips are helpfull..
    Lightman, I like that metaphor :) Or is it a simile ?
     
  11. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    a simile will point out a 'similarity' so it's easy to differentiate between one and a metaphor...

    his smile was like the cheshire cat's
    the dawn came up like thunder
    it was hot as hell in there

    those are all similes... notice that they all contain 'like' or 'as'... a metaphor won't:

    her madonna smile lit up the whole room
    the moon's a balloon
    the sun bathed the wheatfields in a golden glow
     
  12. MarkArellius

    MarkArellius New Member

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    While I was writng just now I caught the difference, now I understand it completely.
     
  13. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Alive in the Superunknown

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    Yes, a metaphor is an implied comparison; in a simile the comparison is made explicit. The well-chosen metaphor rewards the thoughtful reader, by allowing him to plumb the comparison. A simile is usually more direct, and because of that more limited.
     

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