I'm writing a story. How do I describe love?

2 Answers
Nov 15, 2016

One of the best descriptions of Love in literature is found in I Corinthians chapter 13


Verse 4 love suffers long, and is kind. love does not envy, love does not vaunt itself and is not puffed up. Verse 5 love does not behave unseemly, does not seek "her" own, love is not easily provoked , love does not think evil, Verse 6 love does not rejoice in iniquity in others, but rejoices in truth. Verse 7 love bears all things, love believes all things, love hopes in all things, love endures all things.
Verse, 8 love never fails

Love is unselfish concern for others

In short, so long as you are authentic in your writing, there is no wrong answer in how to describe love in all it's forms.


This is a big question - how does one describe love?

I think the first part to this question is "What kind of love do you want to describe?"

There are all sorts of love - there is what is called "pure love" - that feeling of connection that is overwhelming and beautiful and pure and whose description is a poor substitute for the real thing (to steal and adjust a line from the Tao - the Pure Love that can be described is not Pure Love); there's romantic love; fraternal love; bromance; selfish love; love/hate; forbidden love; lost love; puppy love; love of the rational; and so many more. So there's your first decision - what kind of love are we talking here.

And then to the second part of this question - what are your feelings on it? What is your experience? Or if you are writing a story, what would the feelings of that character be?

Let's explore this for a second with a couple of examples (and trust me, there are plenty of examples - entire radio stations are filled with love songs, entire book stores are filled with love stories, poems and sayings and witticisms concerning love abound):

So first let's go with a more traditional love story where boy meets girl. How do they feel about each other? What do they do to express those feelings? What are the internal conversations - the hopes, the fears?

Ok - another example - a small group of friends decide to do a road trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Where are they from - that will give some clues about how they will act and react - it will be very different if they are from San Diego, California; or Seattle, Washington; or Dallas, Texas. How old are they? That will give clues as to how they will act. What are the relationships? Perhaps an older brother is bringing his younger sister - will the other boys hit on her? How? Will the older brother protect her? Or respect her ability to form her own relationships?

In short, so long as you are authentic in your writing, there is no wrong answer in how to describe love in all it's forms.