Lindsey R. Loucks

Author of Romance and Other Scary Things

Synesthesia: Hurray! It’s Not A Disease!

It’s that time again when I tell you to go out and buy the book Word Painting: A Guide To Write More Descriptively by Rebecca McClanahan. If you haven’t bought it yet, shame on you. If you have, don’t you just love it???

In her book, Rebecca discusses synesthesia, something I’d never heard of. It’s when you describe an object, person, or place by using one sense to suggest another. For example, what color is silence? What is the shape of grandma’s laughter? What does fear smell like?

I recently read a book where I thought synesthesia was successfully used. In Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz, the main character has his first, um, “encounter” with a girl. The main character says his world turned purple during that particular moment. Did his world actually turn purple? Nope. But to him, that’s what color pleasure is.

Have any of you used synesthesia in your own writing? Have you seen it successfully used in other people’s writing?


  1. Never heard that name before, and I’m not even sure I am pronouncing it right. IT does sound like an interesting way to add something “extra” to the descriptions, though!


  2. I just stumbled across this and was really excited. I’m the author of Invincible Summer, and I actually have synethesia, so I use it a lot in my writing. I love that you picked it out.

  3. Oh my God, it’s Hannah Moskowitz, author of Invincible Summer!! I loved that book. 🙂

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