Every writer knows this mantra, but sometimes it’s hard to figure out exactly what that means.
Finding the right word is often dependent on context.
A flabby verb will work almost anywhere, but a strong verb fits best within a particular context.
Can they describe their subject in detail without turning it into a narrative or story?
When I was teaching homeschool writing classes, this was a hard concept for my students to grasp.
The following word lists will help them improve their descriptive paragraphs as they think of more concrete ways to describe a person’s appearance.
TIP: Students shouldn’t be expected include every descriptive element listed below.Even with careful guidelines, many still ended up focusing on It’s good to let your kids struggle with the initial writing process.As they wrestle with ideas and words, it will remind them of the importance of thorough and effective brainstorming.Here’s a blatant example: “The mountain was big.”—How big? Here’s how a couple of strong verbs can show how big that mountain really is: “Mt.Rainier thrusts its stony, snow-capped peak more than 14,000 feet into the brilliant blue skies of western Washington, where it reigns as the tallest mountain in the lower 48 states.” One more: “The movie was great.”—Really? How about: “The new indie film struck a chord with the audience, who gasped in horror over the grisly murder, but laughed uproariously when the murderer slipped on a bloody banana peel.” But wait, there’s as an adverb in that sentence: uproariously.True, but I believe this is one of those instances when replacing the verb “to laugh” with a synonym would only distract the reader, rather than enhance the sentence. “The new indie film struck a chord with the audience, who gasped in horror over the grisly murder, but …In each of these examples, I found the replacement verb distracting, so I stuck with my original verb: “to laugh”.Write Shop II continues by offering several lessons in advanced descriptive narration, where students weave vivid description into a story or other narrative.These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'creative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. The eyes that stared back at Daniel were a clear bright blue. Can your homeschool high schoolers describe a person using vivid vocabulary like the above examples?Without good observation skills or an arsenal of strong words, this can be a challenging task!