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message 1: by Pirl, The Awesome One (new)

Pirl (pirlismyname) | 1745 comments Mod
I'm probably not gonna send you any of my writing (though you're welcome to look at it) but I need some advice. I'm a great writer but even as I grow my vocab(I'm an Israeli, and even though I'm an English speaker as far as school's concerned, I've never lived in the US or any other place where this language is spoken), I still can't seem to use it perfectly. I mean, my sentences are correct, but they lack imagination in the actual description. Instead of writing something like - "I place my hands in the chilling cold water and splash it upon my face" I write: "I put my hands in the cold water and then put them on my face."
Any ideas or exercises that'll help - or something?

message 2: by Buffy (new)

Buffy (Buffywuffy) This is a problem for a lot of us native English speakers too! Judging from what I've read of your posts, you are very articulate which leads me to believe that you need to focus on your editing process rather than gaining a larger vocabulary. (Although, it's never a bad thing to expand one's vocabulary.)

I would suggest that you go through your writing meticulously and isolate any problems which stand out. Here are a few things you could do:

1. Take out all of the adverbs in your piece. Scrap them all. Then, read it through and see where they should be replaced. You should have some, but a lot of people use them waaaay too much.

2. Replace cliches. Does your hero have arms as big as tree trunks or did your heroine's eyes get as big as dinner plates? It's easy to use these descriptions because when we write, those are the first things which pop into our heads. We tend to write what we know or what we've heard. One thing you could do is to make lists. So to describe your beefcake hero, make a list of things which are large that you could compare him to.

3. Get rid of words such as beautiful, amazing, interesting and other insipid words that we use all of the time. (Unless they're in dialogue and are important to the story. Obviously you have to use your best judgement.)

These are just a few things that I thought about. Sorry I haven't given examples. I can if I think about it a little bit more, but I just woke up and the brain isn't fully in gear yet. :D

message 3: by Pirl, The Awesome One (new)

Pirl (pirlismyname) | 1745 comments Mod
The first two are things I wish would come more naturally to me. The third one is exactly my problem.

Thanks. :D

message 4: by Amy (new)

Amy (Amy_Bookworm) | 504 comments I just go to: http://thesaurus.com/ when I want different words. Type in the word & find replacements... Your vocabulary will expand overtime if you make this a habit... (:

message 5: by Pirl, The Awesome One (new)

Pirl (pirlismyname) | 1745 comments Mod

message 6: by Carolyn (new)

Carolyn (Carly1967) | 39 comments thanks for that website.

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