Noun Verb Collisions 3

So, one thing I really appreciate about this site, and all of you here, is that you voice back to me the technical terms for what it is you are experiencing in the piece. I’m not very strong in my language skills, or grammer, or understanding all the technical terms… which is why I struggle to give feedback on pieces as well. I’m a little lost. If you asked me to write something with “tactile tension” I wouldn’t know what that meant, or how to do it, but I still did somehow… by writing what I was experience in the moment. Anyway, its just an odd thing to me. So often, you pick up on things I didn’t purposely mean to add to the piece, but was still “feeling.” So, I think thats pretty cool, and it’s helping me learn. So thanks! (if any of that made sense)

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That does make a lot of sense and I certainly have found that when you find the technical term for something that you are aware of intuitively it really helps to clarify your understanding, and then you start spotting instances of the thing in all sorts of other places which further develops the understanding and so it snowballs from there! Sometimes songwriting theory, or music theory, gets a very bad rep as being overly analytical when you should just follow your instinct, but it is all a matter of balance. You should absolutely be led by intuitive aesthetic judgement but theoretical concepts and terms can be incredibly informative in describing what is going on!

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Vocabulary is not super important, it just kind of helps us communicate. When we say “tactile”, what we mean is maybe something like “skin feeling”. Like, picking up an ice cube is tactile. You talk about touching the middle C, we can feel the resistance of the key, you also call it smooth and cool, those are tactile sensations. Does that make sense?

Edit: @WLDFLOW3R when we use “tension”, it means a conflict of sorts. The tactile (touch) sense is pleasant in your example (smooth and cool are words that are generally associated with comfort), then your auditory (sound) phrase (sounded like it’s lost underwater) is not so pleasant (being lost and underwater is kind of frightening and disorienting). That tension works really well because it takes the reader from calm and comforted to unstable in a snap. Then, you resolve the tension by giving the reader comfort comfort in letting instinct take over (playing a piano in a way you thought you forgot). Altogether, that makes it powerful.


Feels like some more telling rather than showing, but did what I could in my 10 minutes!

Fire Soars
Burn ban but they strike anyway. Match cracks, a whip fledging their consciousness, underhanded like a peewee baseball tournament. Swing and a miss as the newspaper catches the flame, the slow burn begins. Smoke stirs, soup slurps, the marshmallow browns, the deer lurking nearby, the foreign smell filling the air. Red wine droops the eyes as they sleep. Awakened by another crack as the swing connects, the fire soars in the air, as the tree catches fire around them. They realize their mistake as they run home, certainly not a homerun.


There is plenty of showing in there, and the most important thing about these exercises is to get into the habit of pouring words down onto the page. The cracking and the whipping are great sensory words, and I really like the baseball metaphor you have structured the piece around. You’ve actually started doing what the next set of exercises is about, which is deeply exploring a domain (baseball) and applying as many words from that field to your target (fire), such as the newspaper catching the flame. I like how you have built the tension of the impending disaster with the dramaticism of the home run, and shrinkingly that final chiasmus is a nice touch. Great stuff!

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angels paddle

the clouds separate in clumps of soft matter as angels paddle in the baby blue sea of a warm sunny day. sometimes i feel their oars, beams of light, peeking through the clouds as they break apart and wither into translucent whirls of milky dew. sweet honey sunshine makes me sticky when i sweat. my skin is warm and humid i watch a stroller on the sidewalk rattling over rocky terrain and cracks in the grey that shift like tectonic plates. that kids teeth are probably chattering or

i was rly into this prompt concept and it started nice so i psyched myself out.
i got into a weird mental spot i find myself in often when working on music—i just get too scared about “messing it up” to add anything, so i sort of freeze up and stop writing.
i was aware of this and tried to return my focus by painting the image i saw in my head even if it wasnt as pretty or glamorous. in retrospect i think i went to the sidewalk since it contrasts the imagery i started with. i think i subconsciously wanted to detach myself from it since the only way i can usually work on old stuff (or any wip) is if i totally switch direction. is this a coping mechanism that is a roadblock or is it the road itself?
anyway sorry for musing. im open to discussion

Letters soar

Comforted by the soft rubber grip between my fingers, the smooth lined canvas rubbing against my wrist, the smell of steaming coffee and the assurance of a clutter free workspace, I begin. My desk fan hypnotises me with whizzing white noise and a subtle rhythmic rattle. I’m in. I have entered the new world, the focus world. My pen is now a part of me and letters soar onto the page.