Tone and Tone Words

WORDS TO DESCRIBE MOOD AND TONE IN LITERATURE

What is MOOD?  Mood is the atmosphere of a piece of writing. It is the emotion a selection arouses in a reader.

SOME WORDS TO DESCRIBE MOOD:

POSITIVE MOOD WORDS NEGATIVE MOOD WORDS

amused
awed
bouncy
calm
cheerful
chipper
confident
contemplative
content
determined
dignified
dreamy
ecstatic
empowered
energetic
enlightened
enthralled
excited
exhilarated
flirty
giddy
grateful
harmonious
hopeful
hyper
idyllic
joyous

jubilant
liberating
light-hearted
loving
mellow
nostalgic
optimistic
passionate
peaceful
playful
pleased
refreshed
rejuvenated
relaxed
relieved
satiated
satisfied
sentimental
silly
surprised
sympathetic
thankful
thoughtful
touched
trustful
vivacious
warm
welcoming

 

 

 

aggravated
annoyed
anxious
apathetic
apprehensive
barren
brooding
cold
confining
confused
cranky
crushed
cynical
depressed
desolate
disappointed
discontented
distressed
drained
dreary
embarrassed
enraged
envious
exhausted
fatalistic
foreboding
frustrated
futile
gloomy
grumpy
haunting
heartbroken
hostile
indifferent
infuriated

hopeless
intimidated
irate
irritated
jealous
lethargic
lonely
melancholic
merciless
moody
morose
nauseated
nervous
nightmarish
numb
overwhelmed
painful
pensive
pessimistic
predatory
rejected
restless
scared
serious
sick
somber
stressed
suspenseful
tense
terrifying
threatening
uncomfortable
vengeful
violent
worried

What is TONE? Tone is the author’s attitude toward a subject. While journalistic writing theoretically has a tone of distance and objectivity, all other writing can have various tones.

If we were to read a description of a first date that included words and phrases like “dreaded” and “my buddies forced me to go on the date”, we could assume that the individual didn’t really enjoy the date.

HERE ARE SOME WORDS TO DESCRIBE TONE:

POSITIVE TONE WORDS NEUTRAL

(+, –, or neutral)

NEGATIVE TONE WORDS

admiring
adoring
affectionate
appreciative
approving
bemused
benevolent
blithe
calm
casual
celebratory
cheerful
comforting
comic
compassionate
complimentary
conciliatory
confident
contented
delightful
earnest
ebullient
ecstatic
effusive
elated
empathetic
encouraging
euphoric
excited
exhilarated
expectant
facetious
fervent
flippant
forthright
friendly
funny
gleeful
gushy
happy

hilarious
hopeful
humorous
interested
introspective
jovial
joyful
laudatory
light
lively
mirthful
modest
nostalgic
optimistic
passionate
placid
playful
poignant
proud
reassuring
reflective
relaxed
respectful
reverent
romantic
sanguine
scholarly
self-assured sentimental
serene
silly
sprightly
straightforward
sympathetic
tender
tranquil
whimsical
wistful
worshipful
zealous

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   commanding
direct
impartial
indirect
meditative
objective
questioning
speculative
unambiguous
unconcerned
understated

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

abhorring
acerbic
ambiguous
ambivalent
angry
annoyed
antagonistic
anxious
apathetic
apprehensive
belligerent
bewildered
biting
bitter
blunt
bossy
cold
conceited
condescending
confused
contemptuous
curt
cynical
demanding
depressed
derisive
derogatory
desolate
despairing
desperate
detached
diabolic
disappointed
disliking
disrespectful
doubtful
embarrassed
enraged
evasive
fatalistic
fearful
forceful
foreboding
frantic
frightened
frustrated
furious
gloomy
grave
greedy
grim
harsh
haughty
holier-than-thou

Adapted from: http://ourenglishclass.net/class-notes/writing/the-writing-process/craft/tone-and-mood/

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