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The clip-clopping of the businessman's footsteps against the linoleum floor echoed down the hallway.

Is there a better word I can substitute for "clip-clopping" here?

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Why are you dissatisfied with clip-clopping here? To my ear, it sounds fine; without knowing what specific aspects you’d like to improve, it’s hard to suggest a better alternative. –  PLL Jul 28 '11 at 21:11
    
Hopefully this is helpful ... in my experience linoleum really flattens noises, a surface like stone tile or concrete might be more appropriate. Sorry if this is useless! –  overslacked Jul 28 '11 at 21:21
    
Clip clop requires a sort of hollowness that you wouldn't get from a woman's shoe or from a workboot. Assuming that's what you want for your businessman, make it a verb: The businessman clip-clopped across the linoleum floor, his footsteps echoing down the hallway. –  Kate Gregory Jul 28 '11 at 22:08

1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

With respect to women's heels, I have also seen clicking and clacking used. As a general term, I have heard clatter used, but only when it was a number of women in heels walking together.

According to the OED, clack is the correct term in this case:

make or cause to make a sharp sound or series of such sounds as a result of a hard object striking another

The OED then goes on to use shoes (specifically, women's heels, but theoretically any shoe would be appropriate here, provided the shoes were hard-soled) in the prepositional phrase featuring the aforementioned word:

He heard the sound of her heels clacking across flagstones.

Finally, Wiktionary notes that this is a sound midway between a click and a clunk.

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Considering your avatar, not surprising you'd know synonyms for clopping ;) –  SF. Oct 23 '12 at 18:49

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