SYMBOLISM AND MOTIF THESAURUS

SUPERSTITIONS: BAD LUCK



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HELPFUL TIP:

Symbolism is something that many readers recognize on either a conscious or subconscious level; including it adds a layer of richness to the story. Think about how you can add specific motifs or symbols to your setting that will reinforce the symbolism you are trying to convey. Additionally, symbols woven into the description of your scene can help reinforce your character's emotions and mood. In this way, you’ll be able to do more with less.
IN NATURE:
Ominous clouds
Black rot on a branch, in a crop, or on a patch of ground
Touching or standing close to a lightning-struck tree
Comets
Climbing a tree during a lightning storm
Snakes
Bats
Ravens and crows
The full moon
A black cat
Lightning strikes
Three butterflies on a flower
Earth tremors
A five-leafed clover

IN SOCIETY:
Killing a ladybug or cricket
Killing a sparrow
Mental wards
Finding a dead bird in your path
Drinking water that holds the moon's reflection
Walking under ladders
Spilling salt
Breaking a mirror
Opening an umbrella inside a structure
Stepping on sidewalk cracks
Refusing a kiss under the mistletoe
Getting out of bed on the opposite side one went in
Giving a person a wallet without putting money in it first
Giving a knife as a gift without also giving a coin
A groom seeing the bride on the day of their wedding
Putting your left foot down first when getting out of bed
Skulls
The number 13
Writing a person's name in red
Putting shoes on a table
Putting a hat on a bed
Dropping a dishcloth
Counting the cars in a funeral procession
A bat flying into one's house
Chasing someone with a broom
Cutting your nails on a Friday
Seeing a white cat at night
A bird coming to the window
Rocking an empty rocking chair
Friday the 13th
Curdled milk
Sleeping or singing at the table
Having a goldfish in the house
Wearing an opal if it isn't one's birthstone
Changing the name of a ship or boat
Not replying to a chain letter or email
Hanging a horseshoe upside down
Saying "Good luck" to an actor before a show