Strong Words

Hi everyone, and welcome to your creative writing tip of the week!

I make a habit of reading books of the age we publish for at Dernier Publishing, for research. It’s amazing how much you can learn from what other people have written. I thoroughly recommend it (if you’ve been receiving these tips any length of time you’ll know that!).

One book I’ve been reading recently has made frequent use of the word “very”. Sometimes, I can’t help thinking, a stronger word would have made for better reading.

What do you think of the following:

  1. She drank her coffee very quickly.
  2. She gulped down her coffee.

Girl in red velvet dress

  1. She wore a very nice party dress
  2. She wore a red velvet dress with a little bow at the front

Do you prefer number 2 in both cases?

Why not check through your current work in progress, see if you have any “verys” and consider if there may be a better way to say the same thing?

Trust that helps!

And before I go, I’d like to pass on some encouragement from Jan G, who receives these Write for a Reason writing tips every week, and sent in the following, after last week’s thought on stepping stones (if you missed it you can read it here):

One of my first stepping stones across the stream of writing may be of encouragement to other writers –
A teacher-training college assignment in English Language was to write a short story. I duly obliged with an Agatha Christie-style tale full of police, criminals, clues, crime and plenty of snow.  A week or so later I was quietly summoned by the lecturer in question for a quick word …. oh dear, whatever had I done?
‘You do realise,’ she said, after various positive comments on the story, ‘that you could write for publication.’ …….. those few words I’ve so often remembered – more than a stepping stone, a positive boulder!
(… more stones, and yes, publication, but plenty of irritating little pebbles in the form of rejection slips along the way ...)” – Jan G.
Thanks, Jan, for encouraging us all. 🙂
Janet Wilson

Janet Wilson

Have a great writing week everyone,
Janet
P.S. If you have a word of encouragement to share with us all, please don’t hesitate to share with the Write for a Reason community, either in the comments on our website, our facebook page, or email me and I can pass it on. Thank you!