Presentation on theme: "N OTHING IS AS CRITICAL AS THE USE OF ACTION VERBS. T HIS IS A BSOLUTELY -- UTTERLY, COMPLETELY, WITH S HRIEKING BOLDFACE AND CAPITAL LETTERS — CENTRAL."— Presentation transcript:
N OTHING IS AS CRITICAL AS THE USE OF ACTION VERBS. T HIS IS A BSOLUTELY -- UTTERLY, COMPLETELY, WITH S HRIEKING BOLDFACE AND CAPITAL LETTERS — CENTRAL TO GOOD W RITING. Jon Franklin, Pulitzer Prize Winner
T HE ROAD WAS ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BARN.
B EING V ERBS Present tense I am, you are, he/she/it is, we are, they are Past Tense I was, you were, he/she/it, was, we were, they were Future Tense I will be, you will be, he/she/it will be, we will be, they will be Present Perfect Tense I have been, you have been, he/she/it has been, we have been, they have been Past Perfect Tense I had been, you had been, he/she/it had been, we had been, they had been Future Perfect Tense I will have been, you will have been, he/she/it will have been, we will have been, they will have been
T HE ROAD CURLED AROUND THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BARN.
A VOID USING BEING VERBS A common problem with amateur writing is the over use of being verbs. Most of these verbs should be eliminated in revision.
S OMETIMES YOU CAN SIMPLY ELIMINATE THE “B E ” VERB AND REPLACE IT WITH AN ACTION VERB. The girl was running down the road. The girl ran down the road.
M OST OF THE TIME, THE SENTENCE SHOULD BE REWRITTEN. The house was green and red, and I will never forget the last time I saw it. The house, green and red, impressed on me so much that I could never forget its sight.
When I was sixteen, I remember my grandfather teaching me how to play the guitar. My grandfather, an accomplished guitar player, found pleasure in teaching me, a young man of sixteen, how to play his beloved instrument.
Jack and Jill had been going out for almost a year and nobody wanted them to break up. Having dated for almost a year, nobody wanted Jack and Jill to break up.
It feels like I am being stabbed in the heart. Gasping for breath, clinging to life, the pain feels like a knife to my heart.
H OW WOULD YOU REWRITE THIS SENTENCE ? He was riding it down the street at 90 mph.
P AINT WITH A CTION V ERB S TROKES Imagine that you are the author of Treasure Island, and the next slide is your rough draft. As you are revising it, you realize that it is riddled with ineffective being verbs. First, circle all the being verbs in the paragraph. Then, rewrite the draft eliminating as many being verbs as possible. For example, you can combine sentences like “The dog sat under the tree. He was scratching his neck.” “The dog sat under the tree, scratching his neck.”
FROM TREASURE ISLAND I remember him as if it were yesterday. He was a tall, strong, heavy, nut-brown man. What was noticeable was his jet black pigtail and his soiled blue coat. He had a handspike. His hands were rugged and scarred with black broken nails, and there was a cut across one cheek of a dirty, livid white.