H – Hyperbole

My A to Z Challenge theme is teaching you how not to write a book, or a short story, or any piece of creative writing whatsoever. For more information, including links to previous chapters and lessons, please refer to this post. Now buckle in and proceed with…



Billionaire Highlander cowboy Hawk MacHardcastle is tired of living the jetset life of champagne, bucking broncos, kilts, fast cars, and burning bundles of cash for warmth. Desperate to find meaning in his life, he retires to his family’s isolated cabin in the wilds of New Jersey, on the shores of majestic Lake Latrine.

There, Hawk plans on self-reflection and pursuing the great love of his life—fishing. However, Hawk’s self-imposed loneliness comes to an end when he makes a most unusual companion and fishing buddy.

Dropsy Velvet was once a young woman living on the shores of Lake Latrine with her settler family. However, a curse turned her into a mermaid and now she lives, sad and alone, in the depths of the lake. She hasn’t had human contact for close to fifty years, thanks to everyone either being terrified of her or thinking they’re drunk when they see her—but Hawk may be the connection to the world she’s been craving. Charmed by her innocent face, sparkling wit, and huge bare breasts, Hawk decides to help her find a way to lift the curse, as she will lift his: the curse of ennui and affluenza. But time is running out, for something sinister wants to flush Latrine away forever.


Dropsy swam to the shore and flopped on the sand with the force of an asteroid slamming into the earth. A thousand diamonds of sunlight glittered on her skin. She was as beautiful as Cleopatra, Aphrodite, Mona Lisa, and Christina Hendricks all mixed into one woman. Hawk’s heart—and loins—stirred, a jet engine roaring to life inside his rib cage and in his pants.

He walked over and sat down on the sand next to her, admiring her beautiful scaled tail, like the tail of a great white shark ravaging the deep and eating entire schools of fish in one gulp—the way she was consuming his heart right now.

“Why are you lonely, Hawk?” she asked. “Why did you come here? Tell me who you really are. Are you a god? A titan?”

Hawk laughed, his voice vibrating the air and causing ripples on the lake, since it was so deep and magnificent. “I am no god.” He gazed sadly at her. “Just a simple man, who became tangled in a complicated web.”


Hyperbole is over-exaggeration, blowing things up to gigantic proportions like an atom bomb being tested in the desert, and it’s most effectively used for comedy—so using it for something that’s not supposed to be funny has to be done carefully. As a general rule, if you’re writing something serious you should try to avoid it. There are much more effective ways to create intensity, drama, and impact—using dialog, character reactions, and even understatement. These are much less invasive (and absurd) tactics.

Hyperbole is also most effective when it’s subtle, ironically. It can be used to make characters into caricatures, so again, it’s better suited for comedy. By all means, if you’re a comedic writer you should learn how to use it, and use it well. Not to toot my own horn, but…have you noticed this entire theme has been hyperbole?

27 thoughts on “H – Hyperbole

  1. Aphrodite, Mona Lisa and Christina Hendricks combined…now that is some mind boggling beauty! 😀


    1. Isn’t it though! 😉 Thanks for stopping by!


  2. Yes, I do believe I have noticed this series is hyperbole. I just did not know the term. Again, great advice.


    1. Thank you! I’m glad you’re enjoying it!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Interesting! Going to look at more. Following now….
    Best Wishes,

    My A2Z @ Annette’s Place | Follow Me On Twitter


  4. I love the little over the top details you add that drive home the lesson of the day. They make me laugh.

    ~Ninja Minion Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine~
    Story Dam
    Patricia Lynne, Indie Author


  5. It’s funny, but in some ways it feels like this is the natural, best story narration possible for these two shallow, self-absorbed characters, and from their point of view, this is exactly how the story unfolded.😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha I agree! They would be confused to know they’re being used as a ‘bad example.’ Thanks for stopping by!


      1. I think they’d be beyond confused. Insulted. I could see Hawk trying to sue. 🙂


  6. Christina Hendricks… XD Haha!

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
    The Multicolored Diary


    1. LOL she was the first one I could think of off the top of my head. 😀


  7. Honestly, I don’t care this is just too much fun! 🙂
    Seriously, though, you are doing a magnificent job. Thanks! But oh boy, is it ever fun!


    1. Thank you so much! I’m glad you’re enjoying it!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. This entire story an hyperbole? I didn’t notice.

    Sometimes I come across hyperboles even in non-comedic stories. It’s when the author tries too hard to give an original image. I do think sometimes authors try really too hard… and it shows.

    The Old Shelter – Jazz Age Jazz

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hee hee! Indeed it is! 😉 And I know what you’re talking about. Sometimes just being straightforward is the best method to tell a story.

      Thanks for stopping by!


  9. “A jet engine roaring to life in his ribcage and his pants.” Hahahahaha! Doesn’t he wish?
    Thanks for the laugh.
    @DoreeWeller from
    Doree Weller’s Blog


    1. Hahaha maybe that means he’ll fly away and Dropsy will be spared his ‘charm?’ Swim away Dropsy, swim!

      Thanks for stopping by!


  10. Well illustrated 🙂 I’ve always known the word hyperbole, but I can never remember what it means – I think I shall from now on 🙂
    Tasha’s Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)


    1. Hyperbole can be great when it’s used effectively–usually for comedy. It tends to be one of my favorite comedic effects, actually.

      Thanks for stopping by!


  11. You’ve taken hyperbole to a new level with this series 🙂

    I think Terry Prachett’s “The Color of Magic” is a good example of the use of hyperbole. It’s completely over the top, but hysterically well done.


    1. Oooh, I’ve never read that, I will have to check it out. Thanks for stopping by!


  12. Yikes..too much hyperbole is so putting off! Tail slamming shore like a asteroid…woah! And as beautiful as….Too much!
    @KalaRavi16 from


    1. LOL that poor shore! That must have left a hole. Thanks for stopping by!


  13. Whoa !! The drama gets intense !!!
    “Hawk laughed, his voice vibrating the air and causing ripples on the lake, since it was so deep and magnificent.” Lol, I will be first buyer of this novel if you ever plan to publish it Megan !

    Btw, its informative to know about all these technicalities and methods used in writing, as I wrote earlier once too, I personally dont know many of them and may be using them in my writing to catastrophic effect (unintended!). Looking forward to the next one.

    Hope the chaos is settling down a bit for you ?

    I just published my H story this morning, have a peek when you get time out from the Hawk and Dropsy !!

    @Subhmohanty from
    And Life Unfolds
    A for AloneB for ButterflyC for CurryD for DanceE for EdgeF for ForestG for GrinH for Homecoming

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahaha, several people have suggested I put it in ebook format, and if I do it will definitely be free since I published it here. No need to buy. 😉

      I’m glad you’re learning something from them! I’m definitely the kind of learner who gets things more clearly if I see examples.

      I will stop by your blog today and catch up, since I have a break in the chaos today. Thank you for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

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