Hearing, Sight, Smell, Taste, Touch
Welcome back to my mini-series on the five senses. Last weekend I interrupted this series by posting a Valentine’s story. The previous installment of this series was about the sense of smell, and I was glad everyone came out to sniff around! (Okay… I’ll try to control myself with the play on words.) Now for the next-to-last installment of this series — Taste.
Think about the many different ways the sense of taste could be used to enhance your writing. It doesn’t have to be the taste of food or drink. Consider other ways that taste could come into play. I had a friend with no sense of smell. She said she could taste the air when it carried a strong odor. Concentrating on that, I found she was right! My point is that taste need not be limited to foods.
For my example of taste I’m using one of the “interactive” serials I’ve provided here at this blog. Click the button at the top of the page if you want to know more about this serial. This tidbit is from episode-6 of A Ghost in the Kitchen — Three Ingredients, Cookbook-2. All the episodes are together and in chronological order on the serial homepage.
This serial is a culinary mystery-fantasy set in the 1920s. It’s narrated by Paisley Idelle Peabody, better known as Pip. In this tidbit Pip is working in her grandmother’s vegetable garden. Describing Pip’s actions, or the smell of the air is fine. However, causing the reader to think about a taste adds fullness to the scene.
A scent of mint was on the breeze and I inhaled with pleasure. I sat on the ground in Granny Fanny’s garden wiping dirt from a turnip and an interesting idea popped into my head. “I wonder how turnips would taste cooked with some mint,” I pondered aloud.
Cinnamon Bun, Granny’s Flemish Giant rabbit, looked at me quizzically and twitched his dirty nose. I could have offered the huge bunny a turnip, but he clearly enjoyed digging up his own. Just as we both went back to the dirt, a loud noise cracked the air. I jumped half out of my skin, and Cinnamon Bun dashed to the security of his hutch.
The loud sound was followed by the beep-beep of a horn. I looked down toward the road and saw a Dodge Roadster. A moment later Andy Avis jumped out and hurried to the back yard, where I sat in the vegetable garden.
As many of you know, the serial stories are spontaneous and unedited. Looking back I could have improved this scene by having the odor of the exhaust from the car’s backfire overlay the tastes that were in Pip’s mind. Or I might have brought out something about the garden soil for one of the other senses. I’m sure you get the idea.
Hey! Come back! Now it’s your turn. A photo of an old truck and gas station might seem like an odd choice for an exercise about the sense of taste, but challenging your senses is the point. Look closely at the image below — put yourself into the picture. It’s a brisk day. You were out on the road and stopped at the old gas station to fill-up. You may or may not be the person driving the red truck. Or perhaps you are not a patron — maybe you work there, or live across the street. I’m sure a scene is in your mind at this point. Now add fullness to it by mentioning a taste.
What did you taste? Leave a comment with just a few words about a taste this photo brought to your mind.
Open Invitation: If this inspired you to just write something or otherwise create anything according to the sense featured today, that’s even better! If you want, you can use the comments to leave a link to your story or blog post. Kindly link back to this post if you blog about what you wrote, cooked, painted, or photographed.
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Copyright © 2016 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene
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