I read my first Jack Reacher book, and there were so many shrugs. Jack Reacher has come to shrug and chew bubblegum, and he's all out of bubblegum.
By Joshua Isard
Employ language that allows the audience to believe your characters believe what is happening.
By Elle Nash
In: Denis Johnson, Elizabeth Ellen, First Sentence, Joy Williams, Phrases, Sentences, Troy James Weaver, Word Play
Some lessons from two masters of the sentence.
An essay about why the vocation of writing can sometimes feel shameful, and how to own that shame and then eventually conquer it.
Some helpful tips for working your life into your fiction.
Do you ever feel like you are reading the same things over and over again? Well, you are. Here are five familiar literary allusions explained.
The overuse of adjectives and adverbs can ruin sentences and flatten descriptive passages.
8 frequently abused words or phrases that gum up your content. Stars of the show include "suddenly," "then," "is," "started," "very," "that," "like," and "in order to."
In: Craft, Dialogue, Discourse Analysis, Grammar, Grammar, Linguistics, List, Phrases, Sociolinguistics, Verbs, Voice, Word Play
What's that word doing there? When it comes to spoken language, nothing is accidental. Linguists are working on finding meaning in every 'oh,' 'um,' 'well,' and 'okay.' The results might surprise you.
Love them or hate them, writers can learn a lot about sentence structure and wordplay by experimenting with the timeless artform of the aphorism.
One of the biggest mistakes committed by both beginning and experienced writers is a failure to craft sentences that transmit information clearly, evenly, and with an emphasis on what’s important.
The baddest of the prose villains, that one word that, when mis-used, can single-handedly wreck an entire page of fiction for me, if not the whole piece: As.
This verbal repetition can create a beat of bland time that lets your story breathe, or it can refresh previous plot points and trigger strong emotions. Steal this natural aspect of spoken rhetoric to enliven your prose.