Chepstow

Moods

Here are some examples of writing a description of the same room, but creating two separate atmospheres or moods:

THE ROOM (1) by Judith Kelman

In the dark passageway, at the top of worn stone steps, was a closed rustic, unpainted door. Everything about this stairway was dingy and worn with age, including the sacking dog blanket, which served as a bed for Laddie, but the familiar shabbiness, the smell of dog and paraffin lamps were all loved by me.

In stark contrast to the dark stairway, going through the door made me blink, as the room was filled with light. Sunshine streamed through the two windows and bounced off the white painted high attic ceiling and highly polished wooden floor. Pristine white bedspreads covered both the double bed and the single bed, and the sun bounced off the white marble-topped washstand, contrasting with the beautiful mahogany wardrobe and chest of drawers.

In the furthest corner of the ceiling a peacock butterfly rested, gently opening and closing its wings.

A gentle breeze through the open window wafted in the sweet smell of cows, the gentle bleating of sheep, and clucking of hens as they proclaimed the arrival of delicious golden brown eggs. I rushed to the windows across creaky floorboards to take in the loved and familiar views of cows sitting under the big oak tree and fields stretching down to the river Severn.

I breathed in the familiar scents of old house and the feminine perfume belonging to the owner of this bedroom I was to share for four weeks. I explored wardrobes full of clothes I wished were mine, and a shelf of books I couldn’t wait to read like ‘Black Beauty’ and ‘Lassie Come Home’. Twirling in front of the pretty mirror on its elegant stand, I smiled happily to my ten-year-old self, my imagination already in the garden, making fairy houses out of rose petals.

I stretched out on the big double bed, and gazed up at the ceiling. This was heaven.

THE ROOM (2) by Judith Kelman

A loud crash suddenly jerked me awake, making my heart pound with fright.

The room was in darkness and I had no recollection of where I was. Lightning lit up the room with an eerie intensity. Where was I? What was happening? Where was my Mother? I was too terrified to shout for her.

In the darkness the furniture took on a threatening appearance and shape-shifting shadows looked like people lurking there, about to pounce on me. The wardrobe became a gang of marauders who would surely kill me if they saw me! The bookcase hid a couple of burglars, and surely there must be a murderer hidden in the big cupboard where the old teddy bear was kept. The window suddenly blew wide open, crashing against the wall, and the white net curtains billowed out like ghosts. The door, rattling in the wind, made me feel sure someone was about to come in and attack me. The room, once warm and comforting, was now so cold I shivered, and wished I was anywhere but where I was. Heavy rain and hailstones, adding to the noise of wind and thunder, intensified the nightmare scenario.

I began to panic when I heard a door slam downstairs and decided to hide under the bed. Sitting on the edge of the bed, trying to find courage to move, I became aware of heavy footsteps ascending the stone stairs, and a light making ghostly streaks across the ceiling. The sudden light blinded me to the little sight I had regained as I became accustomed to the dark room, and I opened my mouth to scream, but no sound came.

Cringing on the edge of the bed I must have looked a sorry sight as my Mother entered the room carrying a candle. “Are you all right dear?” she asked. “It was a nasty storm, but it’s over now.”