It occurred to me that as writers we tend to think in terms of satisfying a reader, but what of blind people (blind from birth) who rely on audio for entertainment? Now this got me thinking. Yes we can describe a characters appearance, for most blind people have great sense of touch and will identify character shape/figure even facial properties from descriptive prose: florid face = heat flushed cheeks, the latter better because easily related to. But, how can they identify the difference between, say a red or green dress? They can’t, they have no concept of colour but they do have concept of touch: heat, cold etc., and sound.
Example of entailing the three senses can bring something alive that would otherwise be a dead point in audio text:
As she swept down the staircase her gown rustled like autumn leaves tumbling on a light breeze, its colour that of flame red. A little daring maybe, but why not? This was her last chance to make her mark. If Paul could walk away from her tonight, then it would be a failed mission. For that’s what it was, a mission, nothing more nothing less. Though an affair with Paul would please her no end, if . . . if she were not who she was.
She paused by the hall mirror just to be sure the diamond necklace and matching earrings didn’t appear too alluring. After all, he was what he was too, and would see the diamonds long before registering the fact she happened to be wearing them. Strange how they always felt so cool against one’s skin, no matter the temperature inside or out, as if originally hewn from the walls of an ice palace. . .
See how easily a blind person can relate to the sound of "tumbling autumn leaves", can feel the "heat" of her "flame" gown, and sense the "coldness" of the precious stones around her neck. That’s why as writers we have to think beyond colour of words to that of rending sound into the mix, and thereby provide more depth for those who cannot see the written word. ;)