90+ List of Mood Words For Literature To Build Emotion

Here is our list of mood words for literature to help you with your writing.

Self-awareness sets humans apart from the rest of the animal kingdom. This includes being conscious of our moods. However, communicating our frame of mind through writing can be difficult. Mood words assist you in effectively relaying your disposition.

What Are Mood Words?

Mood words are employed in literature to elicit various emotions in readers. It’s done with a piece’s setting, tone, theme, and diction. It’s sometimes referred to as a work’s “atmosphere.” Asking yourself how you feel after reading is an excellent method to gauge a piece’s mood.

Here is a list of mood words you can see in literature:

BlueGloomyOn edge

Depressed Mood

List of Mood Words For Literature:  Depressed mood
List of words that send a message of low mood, sadness, or loss of interest in a subject matter

A depressed mood sends a message of low mood, sadness, or loss of interest in a subject matter.

  1. Blue

Sara felt blue because her pet had died.

  1. Dejected

The waiter with the food tray swerved past, leaving us feeling dejected.

  1. Depressed

Instead of returning to work after getting dressed, he laid back on his bed, worn out and depressed.

  1. Inconsolable

He’s been inconsolable since he learned of his fiancee’s accident.

  1. Disheartening

Seeing the opposition score the first penalty points was disheartening.

  1. Dispiriting

It’s challenging to break free from dictators’ dreary cycle and dispiriting henchmen.

  1. Hopeless

He keeps pursuing his dreams despite the societal backlash; he’s a hopeless case. 

  1. Pessimistic

Walter’s pessimistic views stopped him from recognizing the best in others.

  1. Lamentable

The organization has devolved into a lamentable state of inefficiency.

  1. Mournful

Gradually, Catherine’s hymn changed from joyful praise to a mournful requiem.

  1. Grim

When things are grim, the best thing to do is to laugh.

  1. Colorless

Jim’s life turned colorless and dull after the divorce. Check out our list of grammar words.

Anxious Mood

A state of anxiousness described as unease, distress, and doubt.

  1. Aflutter

The industries are aflutter about the changes in the new tax slabs

  1. Antsy

Sara has been antsy all day; she’s waiting for her exam results.

  1. Dither

Kevin tells Sara to stop dithering and just pick a place to eat. 

  1. On edge

Andrew has been on edge since he discovered he might have a terminal disease. 

  1. Jittery

She is usually calm, but the extra coffee made her all jittery.

  1. Jumpy

My dogs have been jumpy all evening because of the firecrackers. 

  1. Queasy

The idea of eating meat makes many vegetarians feel queasy

  1. Nervous

Jim was nervous before the big trip that could make or break his career. 

  1. Tense

They really don’t like each other; they always make a room feel so tense.

  1. Worried

He hasn’t returned in two days; everyone’s worried about him.

  1. Hesitant

Sally is hesitant to try pizza with pineapple toppings. 

  1. Restless

Going through a dark alley always makes women feel restless. Check out this list of essay words.

Irritable Mood

An irritable mood connotes a feeling of agitation, frustration, or annoyance.

  1. Crabby

Jim has been crabby about every little thing after he broke his leg. 

  1. Touchy

Divorce is still a touchy topic for Amy.

  1. Miffy

Stop being miffy; it was just a joke!

  1. Moody

My dog has been moody lately because he’s on a diet.

  1. Grumpy

Jen always gets grumpy whenever she skips lunch.

  1. Irascible

My grandfather’s irascible and insults everyone he can see.

  1. Cross

My mother is cross at me for not finishing my chores before heading out. 

  1. Snappy

A snappy bicycle rider yelled at us for walking outside the sidewalk. 

  1. Cranky

She’s been cranky since this morning because of her period.

  1. Cantankerous

Dealing with cantankerous animals at the veterinarian wasn’t exactly the best part of his day. 

  1. Dyspeptic

They’ll try to prove he’s dyspeptic in court, but we just have to stick to the evidence.

  1. Angry

Dave has been arriving late to work so much he got his manager angry.

Empty Mood

Empty mood words illustrate devoid feelings and emotions.

  1. Aloof

Losing his beloved pet turned Kevin into an aloof neighbor. He rarely gets out anymore. 

  1. Distant

Jen was so lost in her distant thoughts that she forgot to take down the assignment instructions for the winter break. 

  1. Vacant

She had a vacant expression when she decided to leave town and forget everything.

  1. Unattached

Their parents’ forced bonding made Maria more unattached to her step-siblings.

  1. Hollow

Her favorite teacher’s departure left her with a hollow feeling.

  1. Drained

She felt drained after the long flight. 

  1. Numb

After losing everything to the fire, he just wakes up daily feeling numb.

  1. Devoid

He figures that he needs to be devoid of emotions to protect himself from the rest of the world. 

  1. Blank

He bore a blank expression throughout the meeting. His mind was elsewhere. 

  1. Deflated

Sally felt deflated when her favorite university rejected her application.

  1. Exhausted

Minda’s just exhausted from everything – she can’t find it in herself even to think.

  1. Destitute

Financial mismanagement left Jack destitute in his mid-thirties.

Positive Elevated Mood

As its name suggests, these mood words outline festive scenes with positive connotations.

  1. Excited

Jimmy was excited to go home and play Dungeons and Dragons with his friends.

  1. Gratitude

Tom always shows his mother gratitude for preparing meals.

  1. Pride

Selena takes great pride in her long hair.

  1. Serenity

Jack always finds a sense of serenity when it rains.

  1. Interest

My daughter has a healthy interest in automotive engineering.

  1. Amusement

My amusement at Justin falling into the pool was warranted.

  1. Hope

I hope to be a great painter one day.

  1. Inspiration

Jonah is always looking for inspiration to fuel his songwriting.

  1. Awe

Watching his favorite band perform live left Cliff in awe.

  1. Chuffed

Sonya was chuffed because she could finally attend the concert. 

  1. Love

Sometimes, it feels like George is more in love with food than his wife.

  1. Enthused

The prospect of spending a week in the woods did not leave Jillian very enthused.

  1. Euphoric

The band members were euphoric at having won the contest.

  1. Calm

My grandmother’s calm presence always puts me at ease, 

  1. Cheerful

The room was filled with pictures of happy faces, giving it a cheerful ambiance. 

  1. Humorous

The movie is brilliantly humorous in the best traditions of romantic comedy.

  1. Idyllic

The crisp summer morning and the cool breeze made an idyllic setting for a day in the park.

  1. Lighthearted

Despite his diagnosis, he remains lighthearted and unaffected. 

  1. Reflective

The lecture had a reflective undertone, and we were all left thinking about how our actions affect the environment. 

  1. Romantic

Writing letters is one of the most romantic things anyone can do to woo a lover. 

  1. Whimsical

She felt whimsical while shopping and got herself a banana suit. 

Negative Elevated Mood

These are opposite to the previous list, portraying somber parts with negative implications. 

  1. Capricious

Monica’s capricious nature is often what gets her into trouble.

  1. Erratic

The head trauma has left Nigel with erratic tendencies.

  1. Unpredictable

David has always been unpredictable when angry; you can never expect him to do anything logical in that state.

  1. Volatile

Jen is going through a rough phase, and her mood swings have become more volatile over the days. 

  1. Emotional

Watching her favorite movie always leaves Margaret in an emotional state; it always moves her to tears.

  1. Fiery

James has always been fiery; he gets upset and agitated at minor things.

  1. Neurotic

Jeremy’s neurotic tendencies of constantly washing hands made him the butt end of many mean jokes during school.

  1. Ornery

Petunia used to be ornery in middle school; you’d frequently find her punished outside the classroom.

  1. Petulant

Deanna complained to the principal in a fit of petulant rage when her submission got rejected.

  1. Petrified

Sandra stood petrified when she saw a snake cross her path.

  1. Livid

Peter was livid when his brother broke his guitar.

  1. Bitter

Jonah was bitter for weeks after he lost the hundred meters race.

  1. Fearful

Ghost stories always make Joseph fearful.

  1. Gloomy

The jungle outside our house has always been very gloomy and dense.

  1. Lonely

Our cat was feeling lonely, so we decided to bring home a companion for her to play with. 

  1. Melancholy

A melancholy silence followed after the author finished reading his book.

  1. Mysterious

The detective stayed up all night trying to solve the case of the girl’s mysterious disappearance. 

  1. Ominous

The shadow outside her window wouldn’t budge, and she couldn’t sleep with its ominous presence looming over her.

Hunger State

These words don’t only refer to physical hunger. They are also used to represent passion or intensity. 

  1. Ravenous

It was getting increasingly expensive to keep the pack of ravenous hounds fed and satisfied.

  1. Famished

The hikers lost their food to a group of famished monkeys. 

  1. Insatiable

The professor has an insatiable thirst for knowledge; he is on his third Ph.D. and looks forward to working on more. 

  1. Gorged

The boy gorged on his steak; he left his home three days ago and hasn’t eaten since. 

  1. Starved

Sara broke down crying in her therapist’s office when she realized she was starved of love and affection. 

  1. Voracious

The rulers had a voracious appetite for land and did not care if their citizens suffered from their constant war-mongering politics. 

  1. Yearning

David finds himself yearning for more money. His salary is not enough to feed his family. 

  1. Avid

Joe is an avid collector of stamps and holds some of the rarest ones.

  1. Covetous

The politicians were finally exposed for their covetous and corrupt ways. 

  1. Craving

My pregnant wife has strange food cravings in the middle of the night. 

  1. Gormandizing

She is happy to see her partner gormandizing the food she prepared for over eight hours. 

  1. Devouring

Maria is devouring every information she can find about her favorite dinosaur, the quetzalcoatlus. 

A fun way to develop your vocabulary is through reading. Here are 13 Mystical Books and emotion word list you can check out today.


  • Maria Caballero is a freelance writer who has been writing since high school. She believes that to be a writer doesn't only refer to excellent syntax and semantics but also knowing how to weave words together to communicate to any reader effectively.