Weather Thesaurus Entry: Dew
Posted by Angela Ackerman
However, caution must accompany this entry: the weather should not be used as a window into a character's soul. The weather can add invisible pressure for the character, it can layer the SCENE with symbolism, it can carefully hint at the internal landscape, but it must never OVERTLY TELL emotion. Such a heavy-handed approach results in weather cliches and melodrama (a storm raging above a bloody battle, a broken-hearted girl crying in the rain).
Sight: Dew adds a crystalline shimmer to greenery and trees, collecting on the upper surface of leaves and in the low point of stems. When morning sunlight hits beads of dew, it creates a light reflection that adds a healthy gleam to natural foliage. Depending on how much moisture is in the air, dew on metal or glass surfaces (cars, patio tables, etc) can be mistaken for rain as the water pearls run together, causing water streaking or areas of pooling.
Smell: Dew adds moisture to natural growth, enhancing the greenery smell and creating a sense of 'freshness' in the air.
Taste: Water (pungent greenery may also flavor dew collected at the site)
Touch: Wet and slick to the touch, dew in the grass will quickly soak through shoes and pant legs, and bring about a chill. Brushing against branches or moveable objects that have collected dew will shake loose water droplets.
Sound: No sound
Mood: Dew adds the feel of silence, stillness and freshness that is associated with early morning hours. Adding dew to a scene will add texture to a morning setting that readers will recognize and connect to, and create a reminder of nature and the natural world no matter what conflict is going on inside the character.
Symbolism: Purity, Nature, Cleansing, Life, Health
Possible Clichés: Comparing dew to youth or tears
OTHER: Dew builds in the late evening hours when temperatures are at their coolest, to the early morning hours before the sun rises and water begins to evaporate.
Don't be afraid to use the weather to add contrast. Unusual pairings, especially when drawing attention to the Character's emotions, is a powerful trigger for conflict. Consider how the bleak mood of a character is even more noticeable as morning sunlight dances across the crystals of fresh snow on the walk to work. Or how the feeling of betrayal is so much more poignant on a hot summer day. Likewise, success or joy can be hampered by a cutting wind or drizzling sleet, foreshadowing conflict to come.