Tuesday, September 21

Descriptive Writing: Painting with Words by Keri Kruspe

Lets invite back monthly columnist Keri Kruspe as she shares with us “Detailed Writing: Painting with Words” Enjoy!

When I initially heard the term in a Master Class, I explored the idea closer. Getting lost in developing new worlds lived in by new people (or uncommon aliens) is what motivates me to compose!




Despite the fact that I didnt understand it was the “main” term for what I did, I d been exercising my detailed writing muscles throughout every book Ive published.

I love detailed writing.

What is Descriptive Writing?

In its purest definition, descriptive writing is explaining an individual, place, or thing in such a way that a photo types in the readers mind.

Detailed composing includes paying close attention to the information, utilizing all 5 senses and the following strategies:

Metaphors, similes, and examples.
Accurate language using particular adjectives, nouns, and strong action verbs.


Being organized. This may include aspects like chronology (time), area, and order of value..

When describing a person, it includes a physical description in addition to how the person thinks, feels, and acts..

Lets dive deeper

How to Incorporate Descriptive Writing.

Usage Words that Describe More than Appearance.


Describing helps the reader plainly think of items, characters, and locations, and there are lots of ways to do this:.

Think of what you would see initially.

An old building might be a ramshackle old building. Avoid simply utilizing physical elements (i.e. eye color) by themselves.

When Describing a Place, Start With the First Thing That Strikes You about It.

If youre trying to explain an “oxymoron”, the word originates from the mid-17th century from Greek oxumōron, neuter (used as a noun) of oxumōros specifically foolish,.

Among the best methods to get the most out of an adjective is to search for the word origins to get a clearer idea if its the best word to utilize.

Example: “His all-black coat sparkles in the late afternoon sun. His face shows a strong confidence with his nostrils flared, his veins bulging from his cheekbones, and his fiery shiners burning holes into the souls of those who gaze into them.”– Jamell Wilson, 2005.

The Almighty Adjective.

On a building do you first see an indication?

” The bag crinkled sharply when opened.”.

When you filter the description through a character POV, its a method for the reader to feel and believe about what that character does. Using this subtle way to describe their personalities helps make your characters real..

I was giddy with delight when they came out with the 2nd edition. My copy of the first edition was so dog-eared, I had to put a rubber band around it to hold it together!

Donna Tartt in The Secret History explains her character Bunny (Edmund) Corcoran like this:.

Make the Readers Feel What Its Like to Be in the Place.

If you have several viewpoints in your story, you might show the scene from their various viewpoints.

Sanguine: Bubbly/animated/emotional.
Melancholic: Gloomy/dispirited/miserable.
Phlegmatic: Calm/steadfast/gentle.
Choleric: Reactive/outspoken/angers easily.


Have a Rich Vocabulary of Words Handy for Your Descriptions.

You understand.

The description of this guys clothes is a precursor to his character. Even more on in the story, we discover Bunny has a “honking” voice who is unreflective and invasive. Given these clues throughout the story, it deepens what the reader gets out of the character..


A preferred tool of mine is The Emotion Thesaurus (2nd edition) by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglist.

” He used the exact same coat every day, a shapeless brown tweed that was torn at the elbows and brief in the sleeves, and his sandy hair was parted left wing, so a long forelock fell over one bespectacled eye.”.

I have a whole binder filled with her recommendations, and Ive had to purchase brand-new binders every year or the darn thing breaks down because I keep adding to it.

” The spaghetti was so garlicky and salty he gulped an entire glass of soda after one bite.”

Another preferred tool of mine is author Kathy Steinemanns word lists.

If your heroine has a sanguine character, she will not dress all in black and frown at individuals. She might like the color yellow, bounce when she must stall, and speak rapidly, so shes tough to comprehend.

A shy character would describe the sound and action at a celebration much differently than an extrovert would.

Example: “It wasnt that the structure was high, it was. It shot directly from the ground into the clouds and appeared to choose miles.”

One of the most convenient methods to categorize your characters is to divide them into the 4 simple types:.

” The lightbulb shook off a blaze so intense it was nearly violet.”.

Utilizing the POV of my character is one of my favorite ways to describe another individual or location.

Use Character Point of View (POV) to Filter Descriptions.

” The wood of the tree was biting and rough enough that it scratched her hand when she brushed against it.”.


Include sensory information to interest your sense of smell, touch, or hearing.

Usage Descriptive Writing Wisely


If we do our task, our descriptions will form a perfect image for our readers without interrupting the circulation of the story, and the best descriptions will draw the reader in, keeping them glued to your story with rapt attention..

All this is excellent guidance– if you dont overdo it.

Its like cooking with too much salt. Use excessive, and it makes the food inedible, but sprinkle just the correct amount, and your taste will sing with joy.

Going into too much detail will decrease your story and overwhelm the reader.

Isnt that why we compose?



Want to read more short articles like this one Writers Fun Zone? Subscribe here.

Keri Kruspehas been an author considering that the age of twelve and has actually constantly been fascinated with transcendent stories that end in Happily Ever After. Author of Otherworldly Romantic Adventures, Keris very first series is An Alien Exchange trilogy.


An avid reader, Keri delights in great white wine, excellent food, and viewing action/adventure movies. You can discover her most days immersed in her dream world of traveling or writing with her hubby in their RV, discovering intelligent life here on Earth.

Avoid simply utilizing physical aspects (i.e. eye color) by themselves. The description of this guys clothing is a precursor to his character. Keri Kruspehas been an author given that the age of twelve and has actually constantly been captivated with otherworldly stories that end in Happily Ever After. A devoted reader, Keri enjoys good white wine, good food, and watching action/adventure films. You can find her most days immersed in her fantasy world of composing or taking a trip with her husband in their RV, finding intelligent life here on Earth.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Live News 2 Go Creativity 2021