The use of imagery is designed to make a piece of writing come alive in the imagination of the reader. One of my favourite devices is alliteration…repeated use of the same letter at the start of words to convey an image based on word sound associations.
The example opposite from Edgar Allan Poe has the repetition of words beginning with ‘n’ and the rhyming of ‘napping’ with ‘tapping’ to plant images in the readers’ minds and thus build suspense. Genius songwriter Bob Dylan started one of his songs with:
‘You’ve been down to the bottom with a bad man, Babe, but you’re back where you belong…’ the repetitive use of words beginning with ‘b’ has the effect of conjuring up a babbling brook.
I’ve attempted this device in my forthcoming book, ‘Hello World’ (currently being copy edited), in a scene where retired railway signalman, George, combines his rail-track mind with hungry anticipation of an Indian feast:
“…the arrival of dish after dish, like rolling stock in a sumptuous siding; platters of pompadoms, paneer, pilau rice… mind the doors please!” …mmmm…that’s made me feel hungry! #amwriting