Walk. A typical word found in every manuscript and story, but one the writer often overlooks as a way to create mood, show body language, and provide a clear picture of the character’s emotional status, without telling the reader how the character feels.
But does this really matter? It depends on the above mentioned things, context, and what the writer is hoping the sentence portrays.
He walked to the store.
Locating her dog, she walked over.
They walked to the gate.
Without context, we don’t have any idea what the character’s mood is, what they want, and the overall feel of the scene.
With the hundred-dollar-bill burning a hole in his pocket, he walked to the store.
Locating her dog near the edge of a busy street she walked over.
Arriving at the airport ten minutes late, they walked to their gate.
With just a little more information, we can clearly come to the conclusion that each of these sentences carries a sense of urgency, and therefore, since “walked” doesn’t support that urgency, it isn’t the best word choice.
With the hundred-dollar-bill burning a hole in his pocket, he ran to the store.
Locating her dog near the edge of a busy street, she bolted over.
Arriving at the airport ten minutes late, they raced to their gate.
So before you choose to use the word “walked,” determine what you’re trying to portray to the reader (suspense, fear, urgency, happiness, etc.), and make sure each word choice supports that vision.
Below you will find a handy list of synonyms for walked.
Copy editor at Kate Foster Professional Editing Services, Award-winning Ya author, Assistant Editor at Lakewater Press
Foot it Toddle
Hoof it Travers
Leg it Tread