1. HIGHLIGHT YOUR VERBS
-Are you using action verbs to bring the description to life?
- Remember words that end in "ING" are not verbs unless they have a helping verb before them.
Bill was arrested by the policeman chasing him. "chasing" is not your verb!
- DO NOT overuse: "started" and "began"
- Some verbs to try and avoid include
went, got, tried (use struggled), walked, said,
- And, try not to foretell events by having your character decide and think. In other words, can you avoid "decided" and "thought" and "knew."
eg. WEAK: He decided to get an axe from the trunk.
BETTER: He retrieved the axe from the trunk.
If he grabs the axe, he must have decided to do so.
2. AVOID "THERE WAS . . . "
eg. WEAK: There was a spider in the hallway.
BETTER: A spider skittered across the hallway.
3. DO NOT INCLUDE THE READER: AVOID THE PHRASE "You could hear . . ." or "You could see . . . "
4. AVOID VAGUE LANGUAGE:
Everything, everyone, all, anyone, things, stuff, everywhere, all over the place, seemed like, sort of like,
5. LOOK FOR REPETETIVE SENTENCE BEGINNINGS AND LENGTHS. TRY TO VARY YOUR SYNTAX. Add introductory phrases and words.