Monday, July 20, 2009

Sentence Bridges

A sentence creates a bridge from writer to reader. Every word moves the ideas and action. Add texture by naming the sparrow, hibiscus or magnolia tree. Stress key points with the details of color and sensory imagery.

If you break long sentences into short ones you will attract the reader's attention. Create a breathing stop. To achieve emphasis, reverse the usual word order. Read your sentences aloud to gain rhythm, emphasis and impact.

Active verbs intrigue and intensify sentences. Avoid the use of passive voice and the "to be" verb. The subject needs its verb near the front rather than separated by a clause and stuck at the end of the sentence.

Ask yourself what does an adjective or adverb add? Often they creep in like bandits and hitchhikers to rob your sentences of power. Make verbs your heroes to defeat them.

Creative Write: Select a paragraph from your current work. Circle the adjectives and adverbs first. Then use a green underliner to color your nouns and verbs. Begin to re-arrange the sentences to add texture and movement to the sentence. It helps to sing your sentences!

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