Sunday, July 9, 2017

A Plug for A Book…Not One of My Own!

As a book blogger/reviewer, I keep a backlog of titles on which I’ve drafted a review.  When I’m lucky, it’s got two books on it – it’s usually empty.  But there’s been one book on my agenda for quite a while - The Emotional Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi.

It’s not that I’m at a lack for words - when has that every happened?  It’s just, if I wrote something, it couldn’t be a review.  I can’t say, it has great action with complex characters and some mind-blowing twists.  It’s a reference book…for writers.  But then, that’s where it fits.  So, writers, my two cents.

For each of 75 different feelings, The Emotional Thesaurus provides possible body language cues, thoughts, and visceral responses.  So, first and foremost, it gives us a creative nudge.  It’s not that you can’t have your characters ‘roll their eyes’ 87 times in a book…although two may be one too many.  But expressive variety is the spice of reading.  The Emotional Thesaurus helps.

At this point, I should probably stop, but the psychologist in me won’t, because I wondered – how does The Emotional Thesaurus deal with the fact that there isn’t a one-to-one correspondence between visceral responses and emotion?  Research has shown that if your heart’s racing and your palms are sweaty, your brain will look for reasons in the environment.  But then, that idea has been widely accepted for years in the ‘fight or flight response.’  The same bodily reactions are interpreted anywhere from a reason to lace up the gloves to a reason to lace up the running shoes.  The Thesaurus deals with that issue the only way it could – by recognizing it.  There are 21 references to increased heart rate in the Thesaurus, because let’s face it, a racing heart is part of a lot of different emotions.

So, I guess that’s about it for this post, as I sit here with my heart pounding in my ears…I’ll let you guess the emotional context.  

Get a copy today

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