Questions tagged [symbolism]

This tag should be used for questions that deal with symbolism in your writing, such as techniques that help you present it to your reader.

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How to create a scene for a dialogue?

Everybody knows how an important part of writing is the ability to compose proper dialogue. I've even heard that publishers tend to jump to the first conversation in a received draft and see if it ...
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  • 609
1 vote
2 answers
74 views

Universal symbols for real vs. fictional entries

I am writing a series of criminal investigation games in an alternative version of the real modern world. To avoid conflicts with real-world information, I am designing my own characters, corporations,...
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0 votes
1 answer
34 views

What are some means we can use to direct the analyst's interpretation of a movie scene?

What are some means we can use to direct the analyst's interpretation of a movie scene? I feel like Kubrick's films can be interpreted in too many ways. Some people think they make his films even ...
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6 votes
6 answers
4k views

How do you tell your reader that a number is a numerologically important number?

How do you tell your reader that a number is a numerologically important number? Some people use numerology in their books and attach secret meanings to some numbers, but there are a lot of times ...
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-1 votes
2 answers
90 views

Can you structure how symbolism is used throughout a book?

Can you structure how is symbolism used throughout a book? I am wondering if there are patterns that are used to structure symbolism in a scene, throughout a book, in a single frame, etc. For example, ...
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2 votes
4 answers
180 views

How can you write a film or story that can be interpreted in countless numbers of ways?

How was Stanley Kubrick able to make a film that could be interpreted in so many ways? Is there a technique that allows you to make a film that can be interpreted in many different ways? The Shining ...
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2 votes
1 answer
91 views

What techniques do filmmakers use to distinguish dream sequences from reality?

What techniques do filmmakers use to distinguish dream sequences from reality? I heard it's one of the things you don't learn in art school, because there's no agreed upon techniques or standards for ...
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3 votes
1 answer
106 views

What are some techniques used to structure symbolism in a movie?

What are some techniques used to structure symbolism in a movie? Watching Kubrick's films makes me wonder if there is more than one layer of symbolism, because unlike other movies there are so much ...
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4 votes
3 answers
173 views

How to prevent other elements from an allegorical film from being misinterpreted?

How to prevent other elements from an allegorical film from being misinterpreted? Let's say you make a film where the character is in a dark world and runs after a light. The light is the end of the ...
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3 votes
3 answers
118 views

How to add symbolic things "in the background" without giving them focus?

my primary interest is video game development and I picked up writing (short stories) as a secondary skill. Because making games is a visual art that encompasses a bit of painting, cinematography and ...
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0 votes
1 answer
84 views

Adding a double-meaning to a phrase/sentence by "layering" our writing with meanings

"He traveled all his life to grasp the light, and he did." The light can be interpreted as something divine or something associated with the forces of good, but the phrase "grasp the light" could be ...
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2 votes
1 answer
252 views

How do you add symbolic meaning in a graphic novel/comics?

When writing a written work that includes images, what are the techniques used to add symbolism/symbolic/allegorical meaning to a work? I am thinking that you want to add symbolic images in certain ...
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10 votes
3 answers
2k views

How do we create our own symbolisms?

In the Bible, the apple is a symbol for knowledge, immortality, temptation, the fall of man and sin. The book itself gave the apple a symbolic meaning. How can you as an author give an object like the ...
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6 votes
4 answers
145 views

How do we write a movie script with a view towards establishing all of the visual symbolisms and how they should be interpreted?

How do we write a movie script with a view towards establishing all of the visual symbolisms and how they should be interpreted? Often, movie scripts often only have dialogues and some very brief ...
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3 votes
6 answers
243 views

Changing the meaning of well-established symbols

Can we change the meaning of a well established symbol and use the newly defined symbol in our writing? If so how do we go about doing so? It am not talking about using a symbol in the context of its ...
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7 votes
7 answers
546 views

Symbolism of 18 Journeyers

In my story, 12 year old Ruth has visions from another place and time which lead her to gather a group of kids for a quest. She is told there will be 18 kids, but she can only find 17 with the ...
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4 votes
3 answers
146 views

How to cue in our readers that we are using an uncommon symbolism?

We all know some common symbolism: For instance, red stands for anger, blood, and violence. The cross stands for martyrdom and sacrifice. Common symbols are easy to notice, but what if you decided to ...
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60 votes
12 answers
15k views

Sometimes a banana is just a banana

Often reading analyses of books and films, I find that the analytics derive conclusions from the specific food or beverage that a character consumes. The food appears to always be symbolic of ...
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12 votes
1 answer
966 views

Monsters of psychological horror

According to Wikipedia, psychological horror is Psychological horror is a subgenre of horror and psychological fiction that relies on mental, emotional and psychological states to frighten, disturb,...
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2 votes
3 answers
129 views

Can we have 2 parallel allegories inside a story?

I have heard there can be an allegory inside another allegory (mise en abyme), but what about 2 concurrent allegories (at the same time) and how do you insure that people don't get confused by the ...
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10 votes
4 answers
2k views

How can I add more depth to my poem?

I used to write poems. I was in 4th grade, so I just wrote for fun. They didn't have any figurative language or symbols. My only goal was to make them rhyme. Here is an example of one of mine: The ...
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11 votes
1 answer
6k views

Symbolism of number of crows?

After having read a few books with themes of witchcraft in them (ie. Terry Pratchett's Carpe Jugulum), I have come to want to use some of the symbolism found in those books in my own writing. What I ...
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3 votes
3 answers
151 views

Does symbolism have only one level of depth?

When I use symbolism, I think of replacing something concrete with an abstract idea, but can you use these abstract ideas and then tell a story inside a story that's inside a story? As in: Using ...
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4 votes
2 answers
99 views

How do I write different factions with ideologies, philosophies, and symbolism?

This may sound like a complex question, so let me explain what I mean. I'm inspired by Harry Potter, Avatar The Last Airbender, Homestuck (it exists), and all of those things have different houses / ...
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2 votes
3 answers
137 views

Using symbols to refer to mythological figures

Is this something you would recommend. I went to Wikipedia and ended up on this page about the Goddess of the Dawn, Eos And one of the symbols associated with the deity is: grasshopper. So could I ...
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2 votes
2 answers
115 views

Is there such a thing as a "cinematographic metaphor" in novels?

What I mean by "cinematographic metaphor" is that, instead of expressing metaphors using words, you use images that are imprinted in your mind through descriptions in a novel. Here's what I mean: We ...
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  • 4,039
3 votes
2 answers
255 views

Giving a character a name that is based on his storyline [closed]

I'm trying to find an appropriate name for my main character. I want his name to reflect his personality and symbolize certain aspects of his past. For example, for a character who has supernatural ...
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5 votes
6 answers
389 views

What kind of effect can the name of a place or character have on a reader?

My question is rather simple. In fact, it's in the title and requires almost no explanation. We can see throughout literature the use of names and title. For example in Of Mice and Men we can observe ...
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  • 4,379
1 vote
3 answers
3k views

What are some ways of adding deeper meanings to writing?

I'm working on a book right now, and I want to add something that the reader really has to search for, such as symbolism or motifs. What are some ways to implement those, or such like it, into any ...
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10 votes
6 answers
1k views

Why is having too many symbols a bad idea?

I'm writing a speech on using symbols, and I've just made the statement that you should generally stick with one, maybe two, symbols that span the story (smaller symbols that arise and fade quickly ...
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2 votes
2 answers
1k views

Using a town to symbolize/represent a character within a story (fiction)?

I'm not sure if this has been done before. In my story, the main character's wife takes the form of a town. The town represents how he feels towards his wife (mostly sad feelings and repulsion). It ...
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6 votes
1 answer
382 views

How to avoid getting confused while adding symbols within symbols (novel writing)?

For instance, I'm writing a novel where the main character is wandering in a city which represents his wife (symbol number one), but then the places he visits within the city also represent the bad ...
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