Chewing the lip

and never miss a new post about writing, books, or positivity! Rigid cords in neck Chewing on lips His eyes bleed with pain A solemn tear fell down my cheek; my body looked calm compared to how tangled my mind was. Be sure to pin or bookmark it for future reference! Skin bunching around the eyes Trembling chin

she gaped Grinding teeth Crying

She is young, I realize. Glancing askance (sideways) Flushing Moist eyes Pressing lips together One person’s lip might protrude a little when holding back tears, while another might remain resolutely tight-lipped. The chin muscle below the lower lip which pushes the lower lip upward is raised intensely in extreme sadness, increasing the size of the lower lip by curling it forward.

Pronounced sigh Squinting she winked she gnashed her teeth

How to Describe Happiness in Writing: A Master List for Writers. his eyes gleamed Flawless makeup Focusing on anything or anyone except where attention should be focused (e.g., fingernails, watch, clothing, etc. Wincing Your post reminds me 13 wonderful and extremely useful tips from Chuck Palahniuk that I’ve recently read ( ). This master list of facial expressions for writers is one of my all-time most popular posts, and with good reason. Grinding teeth Staring at floor Transform wooden protagonists into believable personalities that readers will learn to love.

Biting the lip she sniffled, she smiled

Broad smile Hi Kathy, These lists must be very helpful for writers with little imagination – for some do write in a mundane way….The really ‘clever clogs’ (to be applauded) can, sometimes, also overwrite and tend to really milk their prose. Scrutinizing others to determine their opinion, Insecurity A deceitful character probably won’t maintain eye contact with others. The whispering of the harsh wind tore my mind. Pressing lips firmly together Trembling chin Sneering or snarling Minimal eye contact her expression closed up

Dilated pupils she blinked Signs of plastic surgery Darting glances Dark trees hush the wind. she rolled her eyes Shaking one’s head This post will help you choose emotion beats that harmonize with context. she blushed he pursed his lips

he observed Wrinkles across the forehead

his eyebrows waggled Red eyes I loved it. A Definition, Plus 7 Examples From Movies and Books. he gritted his teeth her jaw clenched

While I have included some longer phrases, they are not proprietary and it’s fine to use them. Flashing eyes Inability to keep one’s eyes open

Fake smile

Covering one’s face with the hands Grinding teeth Smooth forehead Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts. Yawning Please don’t copy/draw from/ talk about/ comment about this prologue. She had dreams, and wants. Playing with hair or mustache, Surprise Biting nails

Sorry for the delayed response, Disqus didn’t give me a notification for some reason. Touch of a smile I haven’t heard this from anyone else. Sneering Sweating A hand splayed across the chest, shoulders bowing momentarily before stiffe… Glancing away

Drawn-down corners of the mouth Horizontal wrinkles between eyebrows Sideways glances Moist eyes

Infrequent blinking Runny makeup Glowing cheeks Wrinkled nose Laughing at someone Elegant hands tremble.

Vein(s) pulsing in neck or temple 200+ Ways to Say Embarrassed (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Some of them require a little more explanation on your part. Time to cut the Pinocchio strings. 50 Mystery Story Ideas: Plots and Writing Prompts! These small details enrich facial description. You missed a good one for your “mouth” category. Bared teeth 200+ Ways to Say Frown or Scowl Chewing on bottom lip Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Lack of eye contact

Your suggestions really helped me write this prologue. her lower lip trembled Often we focus a bit too much on facial features (eyes narrowing, lips pinching) when we should use the body more as there’s so much more to work with. Yes, overmilked prose does make for a sluggish read. Vein(s) pulsing in neck or temple, Anguish Blank stare

his eyes darted Eyes squeezed shut Hawk-like nose. Good luck with your studies! Fascinating. Red eyes awe transformed his face Learning how to show surprise in writing can be a little challenging, because the “show, don’t tell” rule in writing is sometimes difficult when applied to emotions. Red ears tears ran down her cheeks Vein(s) pulsing in neck or temple he faked a smile Lopsided grimace Gritting teeth he leered Rigid expression Some common clichés to avoid in describing eyes: Even though facial movement can be effective for describing your characters’ inner thoughts and feelings and outward expressions of these, facial tics should also be handled with care: Overuse of facial tics is a common pitfall. Elevated chin And I scream. Biting nails 300+ Ways to Say Happy

Openly picking one’s nose

Hollowed cheeks he turned red Dark circles under the eyes Staring at toes One of the dangerous ones. Instead of relying on clichés to describe characters’ faces, think up similes that convey something essential about your characters and mark them as unique. Slapping one’s cheeks in an effort to stay awake

Runny nose Chewing on a lip Too young. 75 Alternatives.

Required fields are marked *, How to get inspired to write: 8 effective approaches, How can I get help writing a book? he snarled/his lips drew back in a snarl

This is really wonderful, but it would be awesome if you also divided them up by emotion rather than portion of the face :DD. Chin held close to body Constant sniffing like he was resisting tears thank you so much. Nodding while listening, mouth half-open Think about not just the appearance of their facial elements and structure but how they use them and what causes them to use their features in this identifying way. her eyes were wet You can also find more articles on describing character at our character writing hub. Many emotion beats can be caused by multiple emotions. Gaze directed downward And sometimes in the middle of writing, when we’re trying to find the words to describe an angry expression or a sad expression, we draw a blank. She is one of us. They should do the same in fiction or creative nonfiction.

Cocking the head find more articles on describing character at our character writing hub. his face flushed Facial tics his lashes fluttered I have many lists like this in my book Master Lists for Writers: Thesauruses, Plots, Character Traits, Names, and More.

Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Here’s the expression words list. Pursed lips Gleaming eyes his eyes flashed Frowning or scowling he squinted Frequent swallowing Shaking the head

Love this list its so helpful I really love writing stories. her eyes went round _____ glowed in his eyes

Lowered eyebrows Dimpled smile The postal metaphor for Wemmick conveys a lot about the character: The mechanical, practical nature with which he goes about his professional life as well as how his working life asks so much commitment of him, even down to affecting his physical appearance.

Tears And if you don’t want to miss future free writing lists and other posts about writing, follow the blog — there’s a place to sign up below. Broad smile

Lips pressed together Pursed lips Tight-lipped smile Thanks for your precious advice. Raised and curved brows Immaculately trimmed beard and mustache, Concentration Dragging me to death. Lips stretched so tightly over teeth that they seem to disappear, Sadness, unhappiness Scratching one’s face Licking the lips Dimpled grin he smirked her eyes sparkled Face-wide smile Clenched jaw his mouth twisted, he plastered a smile on his face Nose in the air

Ensure that your context provides clear direction for readers. Misleading attempt to maintain eye contact

Repeated swallowing Tears spilt over and flowed down my face like a river escaping a dam.

Minimal eye contact Does she glare, unblinking? Curled lip Puffy face Too Many Sighs of Relief in Your Writing?

Splotchy complexion Chewing on lip

sadness clouded his features

Wide eyes his mouth snapped shut Cocked head Flushing he glowered Sticking out one’s tongue tears filled her eyes Blushing or flushing Gritting teeth Sallow features his face reddened Brows pulled together Tugging on an earlobe Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without written permission from this site’s author is prohibited.

We’re glad you found it helpful. Pressing index finger to cheek and propping chin on rest of clenched fingers, Confusion It’s hard going to slog your way through 6/800 pages – however good they are when you’re a busy writer yourself. Head turned away or slightly downturned while maintaining eye contact, Happiness, enthusiasm Shifty eyes A smile that reaches the eyes Twisted mouth Wide eyes with the whites showing Wide eyes

300+ Ways to Say Sigh her pupils were huge Half-lidded eyes Tugging on bottom lip

Mocking smile Forcing the lips closed into a firm line, Shyness Thumbing the nose at someone Shaky smile Kneading the face Interesting Ways to Get Rid of Ghosts and Demons, How To Edit a Novel, Part III: Pump It Up, MASTER LIST of Words to Describe Facial Expressions, 50 Romance Plot Ideas and Romance Writing Prompts. her expression hardened 75 Alternatives, Emotion Beats and Physical Manifestations Cheat Sheet. he blanched Crow’s feet around outer corners of eyes, Hatred, hostility Squinting Massaging between the eyebrows Staring with half-lidded eyes Exhaling noisily through pursed lips, Distraction, preoccupation An example: ‘His blue eyes were often red underneath, whether from the constant irritation of salt water or the countless sleepless nights he spent at the beachside bar, she didn’t know.’. his jaw tightened

The wind starts again, dragging me to her shadowy embrace. Direct eye contact Visible cord(s) in neck her face contorted

she sneered Vacant stare Whenever possible, create original phrases rather than rely on generic beats. To illustrate: You could say ‘she had dark circles beneath her eyes’, which suggests tiredness and lack of sleep, or you could say ‘the circles beneath her eyes darkened with each night she stayed up to fill out job applications’. she squeezed her eyes shut 5 techniques, Character description: 7 ways to avoid weak imagery, Describing characters' first appearances: 6 tips. You’ll have to say what she’s glaring at, or if his face is contorting in rage, or grief, or what.

You could describe a slight smile that seems to teeter on the edge of a loud cackle or a single-sided smile, a curled lip that could indicate sardonic, begrudging amusement. Unfocused gaze This is so helpful.

Shaky smile Tears her eyelids drooped he drew his lower lip between his teeth Tight-lipped smile she took in the sight of… his mouth twitched tears shone in his eyes Dilated nostrils Avoiding eye contact Wrinkled nose Supercilious gaze through half-lidded eyes Conceit, egotism, narcissism, vanity Pronounced lip-pursing Thrust-out chin Nose in the air Flawless makeup One raised eyebrow Tweezed eyebrows Love Chuck Palahniuk’s words on writing, thanks for sharing. Lips pressed together Tears staining my face Moans escaped her lips through the suppressed sound of hiccups. Lowering head Lack of eye contact Often (in fantasy novels especially) writers use the stock character of a stern female character who raises one eyebrow archly, continuously.

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