How’s The Weather In Your Story?

Picture courtesy of the ‘National Geographic Society’

Does it happen to you, that, writing a story, you have a scene in your head and try to describe what you’re currently seeing, you realize, the location, despite the nighttime and the darkness, is occasionally ‘enlightened’ by nature? Lighting bolds give your protagonist a quick, clear view of ‘the body’ in the alley. Thunderstorms often come with heavy rains, maybe it just started raining… So, what’s next? How do you describe the weather in your book, in your story, or in that particular scene?

I did quite some research about it and found, that some expert writers have blogged about it before. I therefore will lead you to their hard work:

The ‘Writers Write’ blog offers a post 101 Words To Describe Weather, written by Amanda Patterson

Worddreams shows an article, 160+ Ways To Describe Weather, written by Jacqui Murray

“Just Publishing Advice” offers a post “Describe The Weather In Writing With Much Better Vocabulary“, written by Derek Haines

I have my favorite, which I will permit myself to copy here: Bryn Donovan’s “Master List for Describing Weather”

HOT WEATHER 

blazing sunshine

fiery sun

fierce sun

glaring sun

baking in the sun

sun-drenched

scorching heat

extravagant heat

relentless sun

muggy air

dank air

like a sauna

steamy

sticky

dense tropical heat

sultry

dusty heat

arid heat

radiating heat

blistering heat

oppressive heat

insufferable heat

suffocating heat

heat pressing down

searing sun

shimmering heat

like an oven

like a furnace

WARM / PLEASANT WEATHER

(“Pleasant” is a matter of opinion, of course.)

a beautiful day

a fine day

a clear day

a mild day

a temperate day

a golden day

a glorious day

heavenly weather

bright and sunny

a gorgeous spring day

a dazzling summer day

a brilliant autumn day

a vivid blue sky

a cloudless sky

fluffy white clouds

gentle sunshine

lazy sunshine

kind sunshine

filtered sunlight

dappled sunlight

welcome warmth

one of those rare, perfect days

the kind of day that made people forget to worry

the kind of day that lifted people’s moods

COOL WEATHER

crisp air

refreshing air

stimulating cool air

invigorating cool air

bracing cool air

a nip in the air

a brisk day

a chilly day

weak sunshine

clammy air

damp air

GRAY / OVERCAST WEATHER

(Most people don’t like gray days, so most of these descriptions are negative. I love them, so I had to add a few positive descriptions.)

bleak day

gloomy sky

dreary day

colorless sky

a soft gray sky

a dove-gray sky

a gray day made for books and tea

steel-gray sky

stony sky

granite sky

cement-gray sky

threatening clouds

foreboding clouds

COLD WEATHER

frosty air

icy air

Arctic air

glacial air

bitter cold

brutal cold

cruel cold

bone-chilling cold

penetrating cold

devastating cold

numbing cold

punishing cold

dangerous cold

unforgiving cold

too cold to talk

so cold it burned one’s lungs

so cold it took one’s breath away

WIND

like a blast from a hair dryer

icy blast

a gust of wind

wild wind

raw wind

stiff wind

insistent winds

heavy winds

strong winds

cutting wind

whipping winds

biting wind

harsh wind

angry wind

wintry squall

violent gale

howling wind

shifting winds

restless wind

blustery

fresh breeze

soft breeze

balmy breeze

perfumed breeze

slight breeze

hint of a breeze

stirring breeze

wind rustling through the trees

RAIN

fine drizzle

gray drizzle

pebbles of falling rain

spitting rain

stinging rain

steady rain

rain falling in torrents

cascades of rain

deluge

downpour

rain beating down

shower of rain

sheets of rain

hard-driving rain

pelting rain

lashing rain

slashing rain

THUNDER AND LIGHTNING

rumbling in the distance

a roll of distant thunder

crash of thunder

crackle of thunder

crack of thunder

clap of thunder

bang of thunder

booming thunder

rattled with thunder

earth-shaking thunder

tempestuous

a furious storm

flash of lightning

streaks of lightning

SNOW AND ICE

flurries of snow

dancing flakes

snowflakes floating down

snowflakes wafting down

swirling snow

falling thick and fast

big flakes falling like petals

blinding snowstorm

raging blizzard

sparkling expanses

blankets of white

caked with snow

boulders of snow

branches coated in ice

glittering ice

crystallized by frost

silvered with frost

FOG

clouds of mist

dense fog

swirling mist

billowing fog

cloaked in mist

cocooned in fog

shrouded in fog

enveloped by fog

smothered by fog

made mysterious by fog

the fog rolled in

the fog was burning off

the fog was lifting

the fog was clearing

the fog was dissipating

(Source: https://www.bryndonovan.com/2019/04/08/master-list-for-describing-weather/)

Bryn Donovan did a phenomenal job with this list which will be of enormous help for many of us. (I do hope, she’ll forgive me for showing the entire list here.) Thank you, Bryn!

I realized, in my books, the weather does play a particular role, when I want to describe scenes. Sadness or happiness, enthusiasm or indifference can ‘dictate’ how I describe what is happening, and fog, wind, sunshine, or thunderstorms can very much help to accentuate the vibe of the scene.

Do you ‘play’ with the weather in your stories? Does it help you to describe a scene or happening in a better way, or is it easier to ‘feel the vibe’ of something thrilling coming up when the weather plays an additional role? Let us know in the comments.