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synesthesia in fiction writingI’ve been wondering about Synaesthesia, (traditionally described as a phenomenon of intermixed senses), and how it relates to writing, to color metaphor.

There’s a long list of fictional characters who experience this condition, and here’s an excerpt from a non-fiction account of synaesthesia from someone who experiences it:

“I didn’t know then that seeing such things as yellow P’s and
orange R’s, or green B’s, purple 5’s, brown Mondays and turquoise  Thursdays
was unique to the one in two thousand persons like myself who were hosts
to a quirky neurological phenomenon called synesthesia.” 

I keep imagining what it must be like to see the world in colors, I would always have a Prussian blue Monday I guess, a yellow Friday, a red or green Saturday, and maybe a purple Sunday. 

I think if I could see myself in color, I would be blue, a dark aquamarine. Some days I’m cobalt, others I’m teal, but always blue.


Have you ever thought of yourself in terms of color? What color are you?

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her forthcoming literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and will be published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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27 Comments

  • Fascinating,made me decide what color i am!…I analyzed and found my self aquamarine blue and dark maroon.Thanks for all the same.

  • I guess i would be turquoise blue or jet black, though my saintly personality also deserves a white

  • Ice Girl says:

    I have synesthesia. It's…interesting. I never thought it out of the ordinary until I read The Name of this Book is Secret. Definitely a metallic silvery green. And me…I'm a mix of golds and browns. Lavender on my good days. Monday is red. Tuesday is blue. It tastes bitter. Wednesday is green and it's savory. P's are orangey red and R's are dark browns., or green B's, 5's are bright orange, Thursdays are soft yellows, like sunshine behind clouds.

  • My color tends to be different everyday. Mostly yellow, I think.

  • Pallavi says:

    Such an interesting thought damyanti ! I would probably be a light yellow/gold.

  • paulasjordan says:

    Blue's my color too, Damyanti. On best days, the color of the October sky in the North Carolina mountains. Other days, anywhere from deep Navy to the palest French blue that goes so nicely with off-whites. The moods vary, but all the colors are beautiful. Thanks for sending my mind off in this direction!

  • rekhadhyani says:

    Interesting read…

  • voidrpgadmin says:

    I have looked into this quite a bit. Very good post, Damyanti.

  • I always refer to myself as multi-colored!
    Why? Well, I represent the rainbow nation.
    Multi-colored = multifaceted which suggests nuanced and diverse in nature. Think of a rainbow which stretches across the sky after a deluge… the perfect example of unity in diversity…

  • sweetsharing says:

    Royal blue … ha ha.. nice post Damyanti

  • I've always been partial to deep reds myself.

  • Used to prefer the sober Greys for a long time, however now experiment openly. I go with Pinks, Purples, Orange, Reds.. But then nothing to beat a combination of Blue and White..

  • chinkslounge says:

    Ah!! I finally could post a comment on a blogspot blog with my wordpress account!!

  • chinkslounge says:

    I guess I am blue and sometimes yellow! Feels nice to think myself in a colour!!!

  • I've always associated different things with colors. Like, whenever I listen to a song, it's always a certain color in my mind. As for what color I am…I feel orange!

  • MorningAJ says:

    Right at the moment I'm a rather faded yellow with pink patches. I think I might be starting a cold – and my throat's sore!

  • Donna Hole says:

    Way cool. I'll have to research this phenomenom.

    …….dhole

  • Li says:

    I'm not sure what colour I would choose to describe myself. But I do know that on certain days I deliberately look for a particular colour in my closet to wear. And I never really thought about that until now!

  • M Pax says:

    Blue and green are my favorite colors. I think I'd be sky blue… soaring way up there. 🙂

  • I've always thought of myself as blue. I might be pink on vey good days, but definitely shades of blue.

  • Jemi Fraser says:

    Love that quote! I have different favourites – depending on whether it's to wear, to look at, to have on the walls, to eat… 🙂

  • Red and purple are my colours, but in terms of dress, I like dark colours.

  • Angela Brown says:

    Wow, to consider myself reflected in colors. I tend to be such a dark writer though I tend to be a humorous person in group settings and often deep in thought when on my own. Perhaps I'm a collage of blended purples, yellows, blues and black.

  • Dark blues and black. I know, it's not a real color…

  • Given your interest in this subject you might be interested in this book
    http://pettywitter.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/a-rhinestone-button.html.

    Not that I have ever thought about it but I guess I see myself as varying colours of yellow, mostly verging towards amber.

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