Writing Exercise: Synecdoche and Symbolism

Photo by George Pagan III on Unsplash

Literary devices like figurative language brings layers to writing, especially with Symbolism and Synecdoche. These are important tools for the writer’s tool kit.

Most of us are familiar with trademark symbolism – where the Golden Arches is McDonalds. And with the rise of texting, using emojis ;-). In writing, symbolism is linked to creating themes. River being the passage of time or travel. Storm coming in also brings the monsters.

More on symbolism can be found in the MasterClass article: https://www.masterclass.com/articles/writing-101-what-is-symbolism-symbolism-definition-and-examples-in-literature#5-ways-to-use-symbolism-in-writing

Synecdoche, as a term, is less well known. You can review the definition here at LiteraryDevices: https://literarydevices.net/synecdoche/

TL/DR version – Basically, synecdoche is a form of abbreviation by taking part of the whole to mean the whole. Instead of a business man about his job, it’s “the suit is here”. Asking for a person’s “hand” in marriage. Stopping for “a bite” on the way home.

WRITING EXERCISE: Write a three-to-five sentence paragraph including two symbols. Write a three-to-five sentence paragraph including two synecdoche. Which one was easier for you to create? 

My attempt

I clicked the shopping cart and closed the app, knowing my purchases would be at home tomorrow. Money is like water, meant to be shared so no one goes thirsty. On the way out, security hit me up for a different type of thirst but I slammed the stop sign on them. When would they learn? Business and pleasure are separate, at least in my book.

The hand stopped advancing when the professor started the lecture. Hours passed as the teach never used one word when ten could be substituted. Only when the bell run could I move freely, then out the door to the trees. I breathed in the green. Why had I thought college would help me be a better ranger?

Writing Exercise Series of Figurative Language
Metaphor and Simile (6/22/21)
Synecdoche and Symbolism (7/27/21)
Personification and Oxymoron (8/24/21)
Understatement, Sarcasm, & Litotes (9/28/2021)

Series inspired by: “Figurative Language: Why and How You Should Use it” by Zara Altair. ProWritingAid 6/11/201