As an author, having a wide vocabulary is helpful. After all, it is through words that one can paint the setting, introduce the characters, and push the sail of the story. If you noticed with bestselling published authors, they use words to make their novel intriguing, entertaining, and exciting.

If you want to write a novel as compelling as Stephen King’s books, then it is imperative that you pay attention to your choice of words. How you use words will have a great impact on how well your readers can get into your novel.

A good example is when you want to instill fear into the readers. While some people may write their passage as..

Allen is scared to move.

..there are those who prefer to write it as:

Allen is gripped by fear that he stood rooted on the spot.

Although the first line straightforwardly tells you what Allen is feeling, the second line establishes a depth to the degree of terror he is experiencing at the moment.

There are other examples in the literary world that are worth dissecting, especially if we want to see how well an author’s choice of words can make a compelling literary work.

Here’s an excerpt from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech entitled I Have a Dream:

But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. And so we’ve come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.

The underlined words are phrases that make King’s speech more powerful. Through the words, King successfully brought to light the woes of the black citizens of America at that time. Ultimately, this speech paints the picture of the suffering of the black Americans in their own land.


Here’s an excerpt from Christopher Paolini’s Eragon:

The Urgals could not see as well as the Shade; they groped like blind beggars, fumbling with their weapons. An owl screeched, cutting through the silence. No one relaxed until the bird flew past. Then the monsters shivered in the cold night; one snapped a twig with his heavy boot. The Shade hissed in anger, and the Urgals shrank back, motionless. He suppressed his distaste—they smelled like fetid meat—and turned away. They were tools, nothing more.

In this excerpt, the narration clearly establishes a vivid imagery of the setting. It also lets us see a glimpse of what the persons involved are like. In addition, it tells the readers what the characters are thinking.

Your word choices can affect how well you narrate your story. Thus, a wide vocabulary is highly appreciated. Here are some of the power words you may want to use to create a spellbinding world for your readers:

  1. Terror
  2. Hazardous
  3. Armageddon
  4. Apocalypse
  5. Meltdown
  6. Catastrophe
  7. Gobble
  8. Bloodcurdling
  9. Horrific
  10. Glitter
  11. Hoax
  12. Deadly
  13. Risky
  14. Revolutionize
  15. Nightmare
  16. Looming
  17. Devastating
  18. Plummet
  19. Peril
  20. Feeble
  21. Reverberate
  22. Lurking
  23. Behold
  24. Lunatic
  25. Recoil
  26. Collapse
  27. Lurch
  28. Blithe
  29. Disastrous
  30. Caution
  31. Buffoon
  32. Pitfall
  33. Growl
  34. Magnify
  35. Transfigure
  36. Ferocious
  37. Bolt
  38. Amplify
  39. Hobble
  40. Gravitate
  41. Intertwine
  42. Ensnare
  43. Launch
  44. Sparkle
  45. Deviate
  46. Dismantle
  47. Crackle
  48. Oppress
  49. Demolish
  50. Rush
  51. Devour
  52. Revolve
  53. Trudge
  54. Engulf

With your choice of word, you can change the story’s mood or create a new meaning. Look up some power words in the world of literature and expand your vocabulary so you can better express yourself in writing. After that, you’ll find that a whole new world will open for you and your readers, all thanks to the power of words.