I usually keep my office door closed when I'm writing. It's not that there's too much noise from the rest of the house. It's that I'm often making too much noise inside.
I read my work aloud frequently. Reading aloud is a great way to check that your sentences flow, that dialogue sounds lifelike, and that you haven't accidentally left out any words.
But when I'm writing a big emotional scene, as I so often am lately (this series of confrontations between my characters may drag on forever), I don't simply read the words. I act them out, speaking with the appropriate tone of voice and even the appropriate volume if nobody is in earshot to be disturbed. I wave my hands and stomp around the room and occasionally grimace at myself in the mirror.
There is, I think, a point to doing this. A line of dialogue that sounds perfectly reasonable in a calm conversation might be too long to believably shout in anger. In acting out an argument, I might decide it needs more sputtering and interruptions to convey the level of the fury the characters have worked themselves into. I might realize that a fight fizzles out too suddenly or that the characters have been shouting long enough to make themselves hoarse (I can end up quite worn out after one of these writing sessions).
In all kinds of scenes, I find myself needing to position my body parts in the same way as my characters in order to accurately describe how that looks or feels. (Do I really mean "all kinds of scenes"? That question is left as an exercise for the reader.) How exactly do you explain that hand gesture that means "so-so"? What precisely happens to the eyebrows in a worried expression?
For a few years in high school and college, I wanted to be an actor. I was only so-so at it (that's: "I held out a flat hand and waggled it"), and the desire passed. Now I'm happy to do my acting behind the privacy of my closed door.
Good Stuff Out There:
→ Mary Robinette Kowal describes her clever strategy for avoiding anachronisms in a novel set in 1815: "I decided to create a Jane Austen word list, from the complete works of Jane Austen, and use that as my spellcheck dictionary. It flagged any word that she didn’t use, which allowed me to look it up to see if it existed."