Body Speak
Lise Fuller
www.lisefuller.com
www.dangerzoneauthors.com
How good are your reading skills?
• The Test (from www.lifescript.com) ~
You're back in high school, and it's three hours past
your curfew. You slink back into the house and
your mom's standing in the living room. Her
crossed arms and tensed jaw tell you how upset she
is. The days of high school may be long gone, but
the ability to read between people's words is a skill
that you'll need for the rest of your life. Even when
you're silent, your body is sending signals about
your mood and thoughts. Do you know what kind
of signals you're sending? Find out now.
How good are your reading skills?
• Answers
• Remember ~
– Look at WHOLE body & view in
context
– Look for congruence in words &
action
– People react based on experiences,
enculturation, biology, belief
systems and what they know or
think they know about you—as
well as how you react to them
What we’ll look at today
• Non-verbal basics
• Writing the non-verbal
• Applying non-verbal cues
to your writing
Non-verbal basics
• Various studies show over 50% (some even say 90%)
of face-to-face communication is non-verbal
◄Paralanguage
►Kinesics
Non-verbal basics
• For the writer ~
• Hardwired & Sex
• Reading the five senses
• Enculturation
• Across the ages
Hardwired & sex
• Some gestures, esp. facial, are
universal across cultures, suggesting
that this is part of our DNA
• Emotion may reside in cells
• Cause & Effect
• Men & woman are programmed
differently to express emotions &
actions
Reading the five senses
•
•
•
•
•
Sight
Sound
Touch
Taste
Smell
Enculturation
• Some non verbal is
cultural. Some examples
include:
–
–
–
–
Hand signs
Handshakes
Proximity to others
Use of gestures while
speaking
– Touching
– Eye contact
Across the ages
• Different non-verbal signals
were used in different times.
DO YOUR RESEARCH!
• Examples:
–
–
–
–
Use of fan by women
Batting of lashes by women
Kiss of the hand
Roman handshake (they
grabbed each other’s wrists)
– Bowing
– Pace of walking
Writing the non-verbal
• Makes story more tactile,
more real
• Use for putting reader into
character’s heads/emotions
• Use to move story forward
• Use to enrich character
interactions
• Use as character tags
• Use power words & phrases
• What others can you think of?
Writing the non-verbal
• Examples
& Analysis
Applying non-verbal cues
• Exercises
– Reworking the
masters
– Your MS
Exercise #1
“Their bearing, though not entirely composed,
was full of a dignified and submissive
indifference which excited the admiration of
D’Artagnan….”
“[M. de Traville] stopped all at once full in front
of them, and looking angrily from head to
foot–
“‘Do you know what the king said to me,’
cried he, “…do you know…?”
‘“No,” replied the two musketeers, after a
moments silence; “no, sir, we do not.”
‘“But I hope that you will do us the honor to
tell us,” added Aramis, in his politest tone, and
with the most graceful bow.
~ From The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
Exercise #2
Then the queen with a look of hatred, gave a
shrill laugh and cried, “White as snow, red as
blood, and black as ebony! This time the
dwarfs will not be able to wake you again!”
And when she reached home she asked:
“Mirror, mirror on the wall, Who is the fairest
one of all?”
And the mirror answered at last:
“Queen, you are the fairest of them all.”
Then her jealous heart at last had peace; that is,
as far as a jealous hateful heart can have peace.
Exercise #3
~ Your Manuscript ~
The Next
Bestseller
References to look for
• Major news sources, including local papers. (I used CNN online and
articles from the Colorado Springs Gazette for this presentation.)
• Dimitrius, Jo-Ellan & Mazarella, Mark. Reading People: How to
Understand People and Predict Their Behavior—Anytime, Anyplace.
Ballantine Books, 1999.
• New Scientist. “Pulling a Face Alters Sensory Perception.”
http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg19826614.600-pulling-a-facealters-sensory-perception.html. Also check out other articles at
www.newscientist.com using search mode.
• Pease, Allan & Barbara. The Definitive Book of Body Language. New
York, NY. Bantam Dell, 2004.
• Rodriguez, Larry, M.S. www.learnbodylanguage.org.
• Sifianou, Maria. Politeness Phenomena in England & Greece-A Cross
Cultural Perspective. Oxford University Press, 1999
• Web MD. “Body Language Basics.” http://www.webmd.com/sexrelationships/features/body-language-basics
• Wood, Patti. Success Signals: A Guide to Reading Body Language. Also
check out her website: http://www.pattiwood.net/ .
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Body Speak - Lise Fuller