I'm writing a story for creative writing, and I need to describe the look on kids faces living in a fort after having experienced tragedy. Here's the sentence: "They were covered in dirt, acne, and (word) all over." Please help a writer out.

  • What synonyms of relief have you ruled out?
    – livresque
    Nov 12, 2020 at 3:00
  • I don't thinks any synonyms of relief work by themselves. A phrase would work though (as long as it makes sense in the sentence. Obviously).
    – Sophie
    Nov 12, 2020 at 3:37

1 Answer 1


"They were covered in dirt, acne, and _____ all over."

First, "all over" is redundant; the word "covered" already implies "all over." I would recommend nixing "all over." This change would free up how you could finish the sentence though. It would make it easier for you to put a phrase rather than a single word.

"They were covered in dirt, acne, and _____ ."

  • giddy disbelief
  • relief
  • etc.

Because you use the verb "covered," you limit yourself to the words you could literally use. You're looking for an emotion word, but you can't literally be covered in an emotion (like you can with dirt and acne). I think it's still fine though. You can try switching the verb though to open up some different options; you could also try ascribing a new verb to each item in your list: covered in dirt, overwhelmed by acne, and incredibly thankful to finally be safe.

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