Smells Like High School

Steph and Mindi

Stephanie Perkins & me in Seattle, April 2012. Photo by Sarah S. Moon


I have always had a thing for men’s cologne. In my teen years, I’d spray myself with samples at the men’s fragrance counter instead of the women’s so that I could take sniffs of Sexy Man Smell on my wrist all day long.

Weird, right?

So, when someone tweeted a few weeks ago that author Stephanie Perkins uses fragrance as part of her writing process*, I became inspired to try it for myself. Because mmmm! Cologne!

Since I’m not picky, I bought a sporty Adidas scent (Dynamic Pulse!) for, like, eight dollars. My husband took a whiff and said, “Yup. Smells like high school.”

Exactly what I’m going for!

Whether or not my narrator, Kyle, would actually wear this brand (I’m kind of thinking not), I have to say that I’m very glad that I SU1HMDA4NDMtMjAxMjA1MDctMTYxMi5qcGcborrowed this idea from Stephanie. I’ve only been using the fragrance idea for about a week, but I find it to be a very cool technique for connecting with my character. I’m hoping that as I continue learning his voice, inhaling this scent during writing sessions will trigger Kyle-ness in my brain make me more productive and effective at writing him.  (Ha! Do I have high hopes or what?)

*I wish that I could tell you more about how Stephanie uses fragrance, but I have no idea! I can’t find the original tweet and I don’t know who posted it. Useless!

4 thoughts on “Smells Like High School

  1. Michelle Andreani says:

    I really love this idea! And I keep meaning to try it. But I can totally see a teen boy wearing Adidas cologne – I think it fits!

  2. Dwayne says:

    Oh, the smell of cheap cologne. It really does remind me of the boys locker room in high school. All the guys trying to impress the ladies with their Drakkar and Obsession for men. I guess it is better then what guys really smell like. This post does make you seem a little crazy. I guess a lot of authors are though. 🙂

    • Mindi Scott says:

      I would argue that ALL authors are some kind of crazy. I’ve yet to know one who isn’t, in some way. 😉

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