Have you ever read over a piece of your writing and suddenly pick up on some underlying theme or symbolism that you had no idea you included? This happened to me recently when I was reading back over my novel...probably because I had just come from an English class final. But it make me wonder, just how much stuff did these authors of old really intend to stick between the lines of their novels and how much just ended up that way?
Everyone knows that English teachers like to take symbolism to the next level. Sometimes the curtains are just blue because the author liked the color blue. It doesn't necessarily have to be a sign of someone's deep inner turmoil and confusion or repression from the outside world. But, I noticed when I read over a part of my story, that during a sad part or a dark part, I subconsciously made the metaphorical curtains blue. Objects matched the mood. I guess that's how it is supposed to be, but wouldn't it be interesting if there were hot pink or sunshine curtains while someone is mourning the death of a loved one? What implications would throwing images and symbols in that don't seem to match, have? I purposely did this in a few scenes and it resulted in interesting contrast that could be left open to several interpretations.
Also, I've spoken to a few other writer who said that they write with a particular theme or message in mind. To me, this seems hard to do without being preachy but their stories ended up to be well rounded and interesting. I don't think I have ever done this it would probably be something interesting to try.