O is for Observant: 5 Ways to Use Your Senses Like Never Before (Part 5 of the Write Like a D.R.A.G.O.N. series)


Are you ready to write like a D.R.A.G.O.N.? In this six part series, you’ll learn what it takes to step up your writing game and embrace your inner D.R.A.G.O.N.! In this fifth installment, let’s examine why O stands for Observant. If you ever feel writer’s block coming on, here are 5 ways to observe the world around you and find your inspiration:

1.     “To acquire knowledge, one must study; but to acquire wisdom, one must observe.”

This lovely quotation is from the esteemed Marilyn Vos Savant, who is a famous columnist, author, and playwright. Every writer should take her words to heart because to be a D.R.A.G.O.N. writer, you must observe the world around you in ways the average person doesn’t. You must cherish every last bit of the surrounding world and scrutinize it with the magnifying glass of your mind.

 2.     Use all your senses.

D.R.A.G.O.N. writers know how powerful the senses are and never take them for granted. Don’t just see things; you must smell them, hear them, taste them, and touch them. Your senses are arguably your most powerful tools as a writer, so utilize them wherever you go. Every day is a new adventure just waiting to be discovered. Every moment could be the start of a new great novel, short story, essay, or poem.  

 3.     Details, Details, Details!

Be as descriptive as possible. Carry a notebook everywhere you go so you can accurately record what you observe, whether it be through watching people, experiencing nature, or whatever else works for you. Then use it later in your creative projects. One key to being a D.R.A.G.O.N. writer is to throw away the popular trope of hoarding gold; give those precious, golden details to your writing and give them generously.

 4.     Comparative Techniques are Essential.

Once your have all those juicy details of observation, craft them into the fine jewels of literature with similes, metaphors, and good old comparisons. Make your observations more accessible to a general audience with these comparative techniques, and your inner D.R.A.G.O.N. will roar with pride.

 5.     The Writer’s Toolbox of Observations.

Once of the most essential tasks a writer is faced with is relating their own experiences, their own stories, to the “everyman.” What this means is having the technical foundation of writing to make your project not just meaningful to you, but to the average person who picks it up. With observant detail, you can do exactly that: relate to anyone, anywhere who is reading your work because your level of detail and precision of technique are better when you have your radar on and ready to go.

 Congratulations! Now you’re ready to set forth and observe your surroundings like never before! Don’t delay… your inner D.R.A.G.O.N. is waiting to explore the sensory world! And be sure to watch for Part 6 of this series coming soon.

Have a thought or question on observant living and writing? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you! 

About alishabmarie

Sometimes I write things. Sometimes they are even good.
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2 Responses to O is for Observant: 5 Ways to Use Your Senses Like Never Before (Part 5 of the Write Like a D.R.A.G.O.N. series)

  1. Candy Korman says:

    I love this! OBSERVE … My observations of people, the details of who they are as revealed in their speaking styles, choice of food at a coffee bar, what they’re reading on the subway…. everything… informs the development of my characters and how I aim to create reality in fictional, and sometimes magical, worlds.

    • alishabmarie says:

      Thanks for your comment! I’m glad you enjoyed the post and I couldn’t agree with you more. Observation is key to developing characters and worlds (realistic or fantastic).

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