Expressing emotions

Dear all,

Today is sunny and peoples' faces and general outlook seem to reflect the joy of seeing the sun and feeling it's gentle heat. Smiles and greetings all around. How should these emotions be expressed in the written form?

Cave people started a form of written communication, but as far as I know, they didn't include emotions in their paintings. Then the written word where great writers were not only able to express their emotions but also help us to enter into their world and make us feel the same.

I realise that great writers are few and far between and using language to express ourselves can lead to misunderstandings rather than empathy. It is also very time consuming, especially in a world where our minutes are precious and there are always three or four other things we could be doing. However, is it really necessary to reduce our written expression of emotions to little faces with smiles, tears, pointed eyebrows, etc.?

That's right, I'm talking about emojis. I suppose in a quick text they could be helpful if you don't have the time, space or ability to be able to express how you feel. Sometimes they could clarify the mood in which the text was written and meant to be received. As they become more widely used and accepted we are heading into dangerous water.

Inline images 2

Yes, USA Today made the strange decision last Friday to see how people took to the use of emojis in their newspaper. Do you really need a sad face next to a story of a stabbing? Does it help clarify a message? Are they expressing how they feel or telling us how we should feel?

From what I have read about this, most people seemed to think it was a bad idea and generally in bad taste, so hopefully we won't be seeing it again. But, if writers start using emojis as a short cut to expressing the emotions of the characters in their books what will happen to our language?

Here is last week's puzzle with the answer:

If a farmer has 5 haystacks in one field and 4 haystacks in the other field, how many haystacks would he have if he combined them all in the centre field?


One stack. They are combined!! Well done Alfredo and Catherine.

Are you ready for this week's?

I am feared by many people;
but scramble my letters
and I become hated.

What am I?


Piers Letter: