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Central to all good writing is the ability to give your readers the feeling that they are experiencing your story or poem or play first hand.

Readers don’t want to be spoon fed information.

Readers don’t want to be told what to think or feel. They want to experience your writing like they experience their own lives—with their senses—as if what they are reading is actually happening to them.

When you watch a movie, you don’t want the characters to step out of their role and say hey you, it’s it about time you cried or maybe you could laugh now.

Annoying, right? To some extent in poetry and fiction, it works the same way.

Skilled writers weave different modes into their writing seamlessly.

Generally speaking most writing is a combination of direct thought, image, and abstraction. But for the new writer, the fall back tends to be on abstraction and direct expression of thoughts and feelings. So the goal of this mini lab is to get you out of that habit.

You will write a poem!

By the end of this mini lab, you will write a poem that uses sensory language so that your readers can experience your poem for themselves.

Yes, you are going to write a poem!

But I'm not a poet, you may say! But I don't even like poetry, you may say!

Doesn't matter.

It's good for you. I promise!

Poetry is the perfect genre to practise using sensory language because it is a genre that demands the use of concise language.

The constraints that poetry requires in terms of lines, length, subject matter, makes it the best genre in which to practise image writing.

If you are interested in writing fiction or screenplays, then it is absolutely essential that you understand the impact that images have on your writing.

And if you're a poet or aspiring poet then I don't have to convince you how great writing poetry is—because you already know!