As I was reading Agnes Grey last week (review will arrive, I've currently got a bit of a backlog), aside from thoroughly enjoying the book I kept stumbling across pearls of wisdom. One stuck out as something that I want to always bear in mind when constructing emotion and, particularly, thwarted love in my writing. This passage comes just after the heroine has had a pleasant encounter with the object of her affections:
'But our wishes are like tinder: the flint and steel of circumstances are continually striking out sparks, which vanish immediately, unless they chance to fall upon the tinder of our wishes; then, they instantly ignite, and the flame of hope is kindled in a moment.'
I love the extended metaphor and I love the sentiment. I reread the passage about eight times to absorb it fully and I'm almost relieved that it caught my eye. It's something that seems so obvious yet, as a basic concept of humanity, it's something a lot of writers gloss over in their bid to 'just write'.
Seems I'm building up a bit of a knowledge base when it comes to showing affection on the page. Remember, I'm not allowed to say 'love' either...