Language (or sometimes known as imagery) techniques are used for impact when it comes to any type of creative writing. Some I prefer more than others, and it’s okay to be critical on the least favourites… right? I’m aware this probably seems incredibly sad of me, to rank my worst to best language features, but what else am I meant to do on a bleak Sunday evening? (Probably something normal like Netflix or something). Anyways, moving on…
Does anyone else just find onomatopoeia annoying? Even the spelling of the term itself is annoying. I just think it is much more sophisticated to describe a sound and its effect on the situation, rather than literally writing POW! CRASH! THUD! It ironically takes away the impact on the text, don’t you think?
Although similes have their purpose, they’re one of those techniques you used to overuse in secondary school, because you learnt a fancy new writing technique. The time when you use every opportunity to describe grass as green as emerald, or the night as cold as ice, or the wolf’s teeth were as sharp as knives. Inventive, huh? Make sure you use it cleverly, not proudly.
Whenever I was asked to analyse a piece of text, the first thing I would usually look for was alliteration. It’s used on such a regular basis, however the sneaky hidden ones (usually in a piece of literature) are the most effective. Obvious alliteration reminds me of cheap advertisements, but examples such as classic literature and poetry that include alliteration always interpret these techniques in an abstract form. After all, I wonder how many of you noticed how many times I’ve just used alliteration. Answer: 3
Here’s a perfect example of alliteration; John Keats’ Ode to a Nightingale:
Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget
What thou among the leaves hast never known,
The weariness, the fever, and the fret
Here, where men sit and hear each other groan;
I SLAVED AWAY AT MY ENTIRE 1600 WORD ESSAY FOR FIVE GRUELLING DAYS. THAT’S 120 HOURS. SO MANY TIMES I WANTED TO SURRENDER AND GIVE UP BECAUSE THE IMPECCABLY DULL ESSAY TITLE WAS SO SOUL DESTROYING.
My point exactly. Hyperbole gives any writer the ticket to making the most boring of things interesting. That sentence originated as; The essay I was set was boring. Unrealistic examples like mine can be more comical than intensifying; would anyone in their right mind really dedicate 120 solid hours on a 1600 word essay? I think not.
3. Rhetorical Question
Do you agree with it being one of the top language techniques? Ha. There you go. Exactly the reason why I love rhetorical questions so much is that you can ask anything relevant. And what’s even better, is you can ask anything and you don’t (expect) an answer, so no one can give you an earful from asking so many preposterous questions. Genius if you ask me. (Unless it was a rhetorical question…). Moving swiftly on. I also think that rhetorical questions, when used correctly and effectively, can be one of the most powerful attributes to language, especially when it comes to texts such as persuasive speeches and articles. They change the way the reader’s outlook on a certain subject is. You can ask them for their opinion with the underlying tone of your own, influencing their (supposedly silent) response. Mwahaha.
Juxtaposition. What a great word in itself. But yet, what an even better imagery technique. The creativity this term unleashes in the most abstract of ways, if used to its full potential gives a text such power and effect. A beautiful example is John Keats’ The Cold Heaven:
Suddenly I saw the cold and rook-delighting heavenThat seemed as though ice burned and was but the more ice,And thereupon imagination and heart were drivenSo wild that every casual thought of that and this
My favourite thing in the entire English language. Metaphorical language is so beautiful and symbolic. We use metaphorical thoughts every single day, and the incredibility of analogies to refer to a metaphorical thought; tying English language with the creative thoughts of psychology. Simply amazing.
Comment below if you agree/what your favourite imagery techniques are!