The Emotion Thesaurus–My Favorite Writing Resource

by Pamela S. Meyers

I’m asked what writing resources I keep at my elbow, the
first that I name is The Emotion Thesaurus:
A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression
(ET) by Angela Ackerman and Becca Publisi.
years ago, I was told my main character seemed flat in a particular scene. “What
is she feeling? Show us.” I’d just purchased the Kindle version of ET and I
used the book to help me deepen my character by showing the emotion she was
feeling. By the time I rewrote the scene, I’d gone into a deeper POV than
before and received high praises from my crit partner.
ET takes
75 different emotions and gives you the: Definition, Physical Signals, Internal
Sensations, Mental Responses, Cues of acute or long-term feelings of the
emotion, what other emotions the emotion may escalate to, Cues of Suppressed emotion, and a Writer’s Tip. If nothing gels with you, there are suggested
related emotions at the bottom of the page that you can link to which may better fit the
scene and character.
The book
is available in print and Amazon Kindle, but I highly recommend getting the Kindle
version because it is so easy to jump from one emotion to another similar
emotion, as they are all displayed as links. I know you can do the same with a
print version, but it would be more time consuming to flip the pages back and
Partial List of Information for “Amazement”
feature is called “May Escalate To”, which takes the emotion to the next level. This feature has gotten my muse
going, and I’ve used it very effectively.  
The last
link takes you back to the Table of Contents where you can check out the other
 I haven’t even mentioned the
introductory discussion at the front of the book about bringing emotion into
your fiction writing. At $5.00, the Kindle version of ET is a writer’s treasure
trove of information.

You can
find it at Amazon at

A native
of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, author Pamela S. Meyers lives in suburban Chicago
with her two rescue cats. Her novels include Thyme for Love, which has
recently been rereleased on Amazon and her 1933 historical romance, Love
Finds You in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
. Love
is All We Need (the sequel to Thyme for Love)
will release in 2016, and Second Chance Love from Bling!, an imprint of Lighthouse Publishing
of the Carolinas, will release in January 2017. When she isn’t at her laptop
writing her latest novel, she can often be found nosing around Wisconsin and
other Midwestern spots for new story ideas.

My Top Ten Gifts for Writers

By Pamela S. Meyers
exactly ten days until December 25th, and it’s an excellent time to
consider what you might want to gift your favorite writer with this Christmas.
Or . . . if you are a writer, what you may want to hint to find under your tree
on Christmas morning.
start with a list of wonderful gift books for any writer of fiction and end the list with a few great gift ideas that aren’t books. I’ve linked the books to Amazon, but most are available at any on-line bookstore or through your favorite brick and mortar store.
1.  Flip Dictionary  – The description on this resource’s Amazon
page says, “You know what you want to say but can’t think
of the word. You can describe what you’re thinking but you don’t know the name
for it. Flip Dictionary solves this common problem!”  
2.   Synonym Finder – With a simple
alphabetical arrangement this book has been expanded to include thousands of
new words and expressions that have entered the language in recent years, and
includes clearly labeled slang and informal words and expressions.
3.  Emotion Thesaurus – This is one of
my favorite resources. If you want your character to feel anxious, go to the
word in this handy little book and it lists all the body language associated
with anxiety as well as the internal reactions. There are a lot of tips for
writers interspersed throughout the book as well. The authors have also come
out with two companion books, The Negative Trait Thesaurus and The Positive Trait Thesaurus. I actually prefer the Kindle edition because by keeping my tablet close to me while I write I can look up the emotion I am considering, then with a tap on the screen go to other similar emotions without having to flip through the pages.
4.  Self-Editing for Fiction Writers
The subtitle of this book is “How to Edit Yourself into Print. – Shortly after
I began seriously writing fiction this book was recommended to me. It’s been
revised and is still a best seller for writers. It’s one I often go to again and again.
5.  Revision and Self Editing by James
Scott Bell – An author in his own right, James Scott Bell not only writes
fiction he teaches how to write it. A great companion to the self-editing book
at #5.
6. Plot and Structure by James Scott
Bell – Another great writing book by Bell, especially good for plotters, but
also for pansters to help them be more of an outliner.
7. Scrivener:  Many writers swear by this software which
enables a writer to organize all his material for a project in one place. All
your research is right there and you even write your manuscript in the program
then convert it to Microsoft Word for submitting to publishers and agents.
8. Registration to a Writers Conference
– The American Christian Fiction Writers 
(ACFW) conference is the premiere conference for fiction writers because
its main focus is fiction, but there are other writers conferences that might
be better for you or the writer in your life. If you can’t swing the whole registration, why not a partial?
9. Membership to writing
organizations (highly recommend ACFW) – If you can’t afford gifting a whole
conference, why not pay for a year’s membership in an organization like ACFW?
Membership provides a host of different benefits to beginning writers as well
as multi-published authors.
10.  New laptop – Hey why not go big
and ask for a new laptop. I’m a Mac user and would love to get a Mac Air
someday. I’m always carting my laptop somewhere and my shoulder would
appreciate a lighter weight computer. There are a myriad of different styles of
laptops in either a Mac platform or a PC.
    And as a bonus suggestion go to Pinterest and check out all the fun writerly items you can get the writer on your Christmas list. 
The list
is not exhaustive. Please chime in and offer your suggestions for special gifts
for writers. Maybe share a special gift someone has given you!

Christmas everyone!

A native
of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, author Pamela S. Meyers lives in suburban Chicago
with her two rescue cats. She’s an hour’s drive away from her Wisconsin
hometown which she visits often to dig into its historical legacy. Her novels
include Thyme for Love, and Love Will Find a Way, contemporary
romantic mysteries and her 1933 historical romance, Love Finds You in Lake
Geneva, Wisconsin
. When she isn’t at her laptop writing her latest novel, she
can often be found nosing around Wisconsin and other Midwestern spots for new
story ideas.