Setting the Mood

Mood is a literary term that describes how the story makes the reader feel. In other words, the
mood of the story is how it makes you feel, emotionally, when you read it.

The mood is set by the author’s choice of words, as well as the plot, setting, etc.

For each of the following, underline the key words that you believe help to set the mood.
Then, decide whether the mood is generally positive or negative, and then choose one
word to describe the mood. The first has been completed for you as an example.

1. Bouncing into the room, she lit up the vicinity with a joyous glow on her face as she told
about her fiancé and their wedding plans.
positive or negative: __positive___
mood: ecstatic, excited
2. She huddled in the corner, clutching her tattered blanket and shaking convulsively, as she
feverishly searched the room for the unknown dangers that awaited her.
positive or negative: _______________
mood: _______________
3. Bursting through the door, the flustered mother screamed uncontrollably at the innocent
teacher who had given her child an F.
positive or negative: _______________
mood: _______________
4. He furtively glanced behind him, for fear of his imagined pursuers, then hurriedly walked on,
jumping at the slightest sound even of a leaf crackling under his own foot.
positive or negative: _______________
mood: _______________
6. Gently smiling, the mother tenderly tucked the covers up around the child’s neck, and
carefully, quietly, left the room making sure to leave a comforting ray of light shining through
the opened door should the child wake.
positive or negative: _______________
mood: _______________

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