MY 100TH BLOG POST!

HOW TO INCLUDE WEATHER IN YOUR WRITING

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So this is my 100th blog post, and I’m pretty excited about it. There are not too many ways to celebrate through cyberspace, so I figured I’d just link back to my first blog: PLOT H LES.

That said, let’s get to it. One aspect of setting that’s often neglected is the weather. Though it is sufficient to write a one-word expression to describe the heat and then leave it alone, I prefer subtle reminders of how the weather is affecting the characters.

As writers, it’s important to remember that we are recreating or creating events. These events are impacted by the weather conditions that the character must endure or enjoy.

Let’s look at some examples.

WATCH:
“When are we ever going to stop hurting each other?” The summer heat breathed on her, making her hair stick to her face.

“Probably when we fall out of love, if that day ever comes.”

“I’m not sure that’s a pain that I could take.”

“I think I’d rather be dead.”

**

This dialogue works well with just the one reference to the weather. It lets the reader know that it’s not the best day for these two lovebirds to be standing outside having a conversation.

My preference is to add a little more to the conversation as a gentle reminder that these two people have not forgotten about how hot and humid it is.

WATCH:
“When are we ever going to stop hurting each other?” The summer heat breathed on her, making her hair stick to her face.

“Probably when we fall out of love, if that day ever comes.”

“I’m not sure that’s a pain that I could take.”

He wiped a few beads of sweat from his forehead and looked away from her and chuckled for a moment. “I think I’d rather be dead.”

**

One thing that doesn’t happen in these examples is that I’m not discussing the heat in every dialogue tag. We don’t want to beat the reader over the head with it causing redundancies, but we do want to show that the temperature is affecting each character.

For extended amounts of dialogue, I may put another line in about the weather, but two or three should be enough.

Keep in mind that most people endure the weather without necessarily talking about it. Our actions show our inner annoyance or enjoyment with whatever conditions we’re experiencing.

Here are some weather reactions:

HUMIDITY: Your clothes stick to you. Your sweat feels sticky and invasive, and each breath feels unsatisfied.

COLD: Your lips crack and tremble. You shiver, and your appendages become numb.

DRY HEAT: Your eyes dry out, and you can taste sand in your teeth

SNOW: Snowflakes melt on the tip of your nose.

Let’s try to mimic this struggle with the weather in our own writing! Thanks for stopping by.

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8 thoughts on “MY 100TH BLOG POST!

  1. mariathermann

    Congratulations! A real achievement. I’m way behind having only just reached post 65. So glad you did a post on weather in our writing, something that lots of people forget. Wildlife is another…certain birds and buzzing insects are only with us during part of the year. They are a great way to let the reader know it’s spring/summer/winter/autum without being too pointed about the season. A bumble bee came in through the window just when Eric felt the urge to kiss Kirsten for the first time, a swallow darted past them when Eric proposed, the geese rise up and leave for warmer climes just as the lovers have their first fight. Not only can they tell us about the weather, animals can work as a metaphor at the same time.

    Reply
    1. William Stadler Post author

      You know, Maria, that’s really something I had not considered — the part about the animals. I think that I’m going to incorporate that in my own writing. I mention a few creatures from time to time, but it’s not as intentional as what you’ve recommended. Thanks.

      And 65 blogs is still really good — not to mention that each of your blogs is probably twice the size of one of mine!

      Reply
      1. mariathermann

        Ah, uhm, yes, verbosity…that’s something I need to watch:) Glad to have been of help with the animals. I grew up in a part of Northern Germany that lies on the “flight path” of migrating birds. Spring is marked by their arrival and autumn by their departure, so perhaps that’s why I’m so aware of our feathered, buzzing and four-legged friends.Rats and foxes plundering rubbish bins and cats prowling at night are also good ones to use just to increase the “darkness”, I find.

        Reply
        1. William Stadler Post author

          Verbosity. Lol nice. Yeah I just never thought of it growing up except with these bugs called June bugs that only show up in June and then they leave. And of course the dreaded summertime Mosquitos.

          Reply

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