Lithe – definition: 1) easily bent and flexible 2) light and graceful in movement.
There are several interpretations of this word that spring to mind. A mental image of a young lithe gymnast was immediate for me, followed by a ballerina held aloft by her partner in a perfectly executed movement. Describing a character as lithe gives our readers a strong mental image with minimal exposition. For example:
Jessica’s lithe frame was no match for Doug’s bulk as he flung her onto the floor like a ragdoll.
When writing we should keep in mind that our initial story structure may change. To allow flexibility in our creative process, such as changing a character’s flaw, a plot line or even the conclusion of a story, let’s our imagination become light and graceful. The words will flow if we do not resist a new direction when it presents itself. The more we trust ourselves to embrace flexibility, the more we will discover about our unique style. Resist ‘pigeon holing’ yourself into a particular genre (unless you want to of course!). Experiment with as many genre’s as possible. Each has its own peculiarities, which may result in a realization in you or could highlight your next genre.
Try writing short stories in each style and to make it fun use the same characters – just alter them to fit their various roles. Let’s take Jessica and Doug as an example. Jessica is lithe – fragile in a romance, the femme fatale in a mystery, the innocence victim in a horror, the caring mother in a children’s story. Doug is a muscular bulk of a man – the handsome lead in a romance, the villain luring the victim in a horror, the ogre in a children’s tale or the all conquering hero. Their name and body type does not need to change.
Why not try a couple just for fun and share them here?