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How to Describe Sensory Actions

May 18, 2016


writing about senses Senses communicate–photo credit: PublicDomain Pictures

Sensory detail brings a scene alive for the reader. The taste, smell, visual, tactile and sound of your story’s world can do more to make it real than anything else. But you can’t say, ‘she heard’, ‘he tasted‘. That puts the reader outside the story, watching, not experiencing. We’re writers and must be much more creative about our presentation.

Here’s a list of prompts to get you thinking about what the senses actually feel like from the inside. These are from my own writing or novels I’ve read so don’t use them. Taste the words and recreate them with your own voice.


  • His voice trailed off, the conclusions inescapable
  • “who is it?” a whiskey-soaked voice asked
  • voice pinched
  • spoke in a hoarse whisper
  • said absently
  • voice clipped and filled with a dark edge
  • Made a muffled squeak
  • Fists balled tightly, eyes string…

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One Comment
  1. Thanks for the reblog!

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