Here and there in my reading I find emotional events or encounters that give me a physical feeling. I feel the zing of adrenaline from my neck to my fingertips at a really exciting or scary scene. I feel the clench of my abdomen with fear or surprise. I feel the hollowness in my chest from sorrow or loss. I only get these physical reactions when I’m really engaged by a good book. (I don’t include erotic scenes in this category. Eroticism is an intentional pitch at a physical reaction and can be accomplished without emotion.)
I look forward to finding the churn reaction with each book I read and often start from these feelings when I write. I hope to be able to write in a way that gives the same feeling to others that I began with.
There is a fine balance, though, between good emotions in a book and sappy writing. Authors have to maintain a balance so that you don’t bore your reader with too much sorrow, surprise or fury. You can wear out the emotions.
What emotions give you a physical feeling?