A metaphor is a comparison of two things that are completely different, yet when we use them in correlation with each other, we see some sort of resemblance or sameness, providing a clear picture of what we mean.
There Are Two Types of Metaphors.
Metaphors can be simple or can be structured as what is known as a simile. Let’s explore each type of metaphor.
The Simple Metaphor: Generally, a metaphor associates an object or concept that is real with an object or concept that is not real.
My heart is broken.
In this example, the heart is real, but it is not actually broken.
Tom is a pig.
In this example, Tom is not really a pig. But, because pigs are sloppy, when we say Tom is a pig, it creates the vision of Tom eating sloppily.
It’s raining cats and dogs.
In this example, it is raining, but cats and dogs are not falling from the sky. We use such a phrase to say it is raining very hard.
The Simile: Similes is a type of metaphor that uses words such as “like” or “as” to make a comparison between two things that are not alike. A simile is used when the writer wants to say that one thing is like another thing.
He ran like the wind.
In this example, comparing his running speed to the wind gives the reader the idea that he ran very fast.
She sings like an angel.
In this example, we are saying she sings beautifully.
It is as cold as ice.
In this example, we are saying it is very cold.
Use Metaphors Effectively
Metaphors help the writer paint a vivid picture for their readers. A cleverly written metaphor can liven up your content. I admit that it took me a long time to get a handle on how to use metaphors effectively. But, once I got a little bit of an idea of how to use metaphors, I tried my hand at using them with a publication that I wrote titled, “Write Like a Musician for Content That Flows.”
For Further Reading
I have a writer friend who is a former school teacher. His name is William Holland. He is a published author who explains metaphors in a way that may help you gain a tighter grasp of the concept. Read his publication titled, “Writing 101: The Under-Appreciated metaphor.”
Until next time, "Happy Writing!"
Copyright Marlene C. Bertrand. All rights reserved.