Time: 10-30 Minutes

When writing romance we often remember to show our readers many of the five senses.

For example, we show what something looks like (often with figurative language. “His nipples looked like eraser heads.”)

We tell what things smell like.  For example, he smelled like cinnamon, like home.

We’re great at touch also because there’s often a bit of touching going on in a romance novel!

Taste is pretty easy too and this sense pops up often during the steamy scenes. He/She tasted like chocolate and cigarettes.

However, we often forget about listening. Our characters have ears, right? They hear sounds. Often they’re doing something that makes a sound. Maybe they’re chopping vegetables – kachunk, kachunk. Maybe they’re hearing the birds chirping in the trees. Maybe they’re hearing the sound of their own heartbeat.

This exercise is two parts.  The first part is to just sit and listen. Write down what you’re hearing. The dishwasher? The buzzing of fluorescent lights? Your own fingers clicking away on the keyboard?

Now describe that sound. How would you describe it to a reader? Consider making up a word to describe it. For example, the sound of a heartbeat might sound like “wubba, wubba, wubba” or the sound of the knife hitting the cutting board, Kachunk, kachunk.

As you go through your day stop and listen. What do you hear? How would you describe it?