The Matter of a Metaphor

Have just started reading Reema Moudgil’s ‘Perfect Eight’ (visit the book’s Facebook page) and am already enjoying the delicious use of metaphors in her writing. 

Some sentences go like this:

“Kalyani, Ma’s mother, had milky white skin, with strands of saffron in it!”

“When a miniature sewing machine – perfect like a black kitten that purred softly when caressed – came home from the shop, Kalyani stitched a dozen doll jumpers with it.”

Of the partition she says,

“Everyone walked, carrying abridged life stories in precious bundles.”

Couldn’t have put better I’d say!
Hear from the author herself – Perfect Eight Blog

In fact, using metaphors in creative writing is something creative experts recommend. Finding similarity between different things is a good way to introduce metaphors. It makes your writing more graphic, appealing and compelling to the reader. Just like Reema compares the sewing machine to a cat and skin to milk and strands of saffron.

Using metaphors in writing gives every object or situation a different perspective, jolting the reader out of a familiar thought pattern and introducing a new way of looking at it.

For example, I could try and compare raising a child to a coconut…

Raising a child is like peeling a coconut… once the hard work is done, you’re left with something tender and wonderful.

Or, I could compare life to a beach…

Life is like a beach… there are the high tides and the low, but at most times the sun is up… it’s for us to enjoy it, even from under our shacks!

Easy, isn’t it?

I’ll leave you with an old one that we used as children, little realising how easy it is to use metaphors in writing.

Friendship is like a china cup,

Costly and rare,

Once broken, it can be mended,

But the crack is always there!


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  1. This blog seems to be visited a lot by those looking to review Reema’s book- and so the stats tell me. To those of you who are reading this book to review it, I have only one request – PLEASE DO READ the book before you review it.

    I didn’t know Reema at all before I went to her book reading and picked up the book, but the connect I felt with the writing was tremendous! It has been one of the BEST BOOKS I have read in a long time and to see some critics trash it without a complete read makes me cringe at the injustice! As part of a fraternity that citizens want to hear from, I think it’s our basic moral responsibility to present them with a well-rounded review. Thanks for visiting the blog.

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