Writing Figurative Language

It Can Really Grab Attention

By Annette Rey

I came across a fabulous example of figurative language. It really caught my imagination and drew an enticing picture in my mind. But figurative language also wakes up some deeper emotion in my being. This is something you would like your readers to find in themselves as they read your writing. Your work and author name will be unforgettable if you flower your work with words that make your readers think.

Let’s have a look at the sentence I wish I had said.

I heard the magical statement while listening to a PBS program on the historic Scottish Stone of Destiny. A brief history will set the stage. During Scottish coronation ceremonies, the next king of Scotland sat on the 336 pound stone. After a battle in 1296, Edward I of England captured the stone and had it installed beneath King Edward’s Chair in Westminster Abbey, where future British kings sat during their coronation ceremonies. The stone stayed there until Christmas Day of 1950.

Ian Hamilton, a student in Glasgow, along with three other students decided to bring the stone back to Scotland. It is a most interesting story and I urge you to read it.

During the large uproar in the British government over the missing stone, members of the House must have had great discussions about the case. For visualization purposes, I add that the House chamber is lined with elevated benches facing one another. They look much like sports bleachers, only much fancier, with backs to lean on, and painted a rich green.

When Ian Hamilton recounted the incident, he said of the atmosphere in the House, “A chill ran along the benches looking for a spine to run up.”

I got a writer’s chill when that image sunk into my consciousness and lifted me up. Those words will remain in my memory along with the speaker’s name and the circumstances attached to them.

Experiment with creating visual images such as this example.

Make yourself and your writing memorable.







7 thoughts on “Writing Figurative Language

  1. What a fascinating story and wonderful imagery! It will remain in my memory also, particularly when watching some political events and the waffling and indecision masquerading as “due deliberation”. I’ll be checking for their spines 😉


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