Random Exercise #29

Let's continue exploring our five senses more fully. For this exercise (and it's a sexy one) I want to focus on taste. Does anything say summer quite like watermelon on your tongue? Taste (and smell, but we'll concentrate on that one another day) are both intimately linked to our memories. Think about your favourite foods as a kid. Though you may have outgrown Fruit loops in chocolate milk, the memory immediately takes you back to the rough nub of the sofa fabric as you watched cartoons in your pyjamas.

I don't think food is used enough in fiction. You can learn a lot about a character if you know what their favourite foods are. A character whose favourite meal is hot dogs smeared in Cheese Whiz, washed down with a root beer float is a lot different from a character that eats tofu and sprouts while sipping organic carrot juice. So if you're having trouble bring your characters to life you might want to give some thought as to what is in their refrigerator. Even if these details don't make it into your fiction if helps bring the character alive.

For this exercise I'd like you to grab some fruit. Something bite-sized like strawberries would be great. But anything will do. The trick here is I want you to eat it with your eyes closed. Slow down. How does it taste? And don't just say - sweet. Does it taste like a red star bursting on your tongue? How does it feel? I told you this was a sexy exercise. Don't think, just write down your first impressions. Get it down before your brain starts censoring itself. You don't ever have to tell anyone what strawberries felt like on your tongue as you ate them blindfolded on your back porch in the full heat of summer.

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