Writing Boot Camp: Day 3
Writing Boot Camp: Day 3
Writing with Style
Writer’s Inc., 125-132
Underline lead-in of quotes: does it identify
speaker (if applicable) and situation?
Double underline quotes: Are they 5-7
words? Do they address your topic/argument?
Triple underline your analysis of quotes: Are
they 2-3 sentences?
Circle your literary devices in your analysis:
Do you explain how and why the quote is
used to explain your argument.
Read your paragraph
Circle words that you feel are a part of your
Define your writing style
Be purposeful: Kurt Vonnegut says, “It is the
genuine caring [about a subject], and not
your games with language, which will be the
most compelling and seductive element in
Be clear: Keep things simple, orderly, and
direct in your writing. Stylistic writing does
not play games with readers, making them
try to figure things out.
Be sincere: Do not be uncertain, phony, or
pushy. Be honest and heartfelt.
Variety is the spice of life:
◦ Highlight and write all sentence starters
◦ Count and chart the number of words per sentence
Specific nouns: some nouns are general
(vegetable, pants, computer) and give the
reader a vague, uninteresting picture while
others are specific (okra, corduroys, laptop)
and give the reader a much clearer, more
Get rid of all PASSIVE verbs (is, are, was, were,
am, be, been, being)
Even verbs that are active can be improved:
◦ Looked- stared, glared, glanced, peeked, or
◦ Hashim sat down on the couch or Hashim plopped
on the couch.
◦ Greta is very tall or Greta towers over her
Strong adjectives can help make the nouns
you choose even more interesting and clearer
to the reader.
◦ Avoid adjectives that carry little meaning: neat, big,
pretty, small, cute, fun, bad, nice, great, funny, and
◦ Use adjectives selectively. Using too many
adjectives will get in the way of your writing. For
example, “A tall, shocking column of thick, yellow
smoke marked the exact spot where the
unexpected explosion had occurred.
Adverbs modify verbs, adjectives and other adverbs
Many adverbs end with ly
Many adverbs answer the question “How?”
These are adverbs
Eating quickly (modifying a verb)
Trying very hard (modifying an adverb)
A really big show (modifying an adjective)
Don’t use needless adverbs
Before using any of these words, check to see if they add
anything to the sentence (Really, very, absolutely, extremely,
quite, actually, somewhat, rather)
I am really happy to see you
Grammar is very boring
You are absolutely correct
Her language was extremely crude
You are quite intelligent
Already, all ready
Alright, all right
Altogether, all together
Real, very, really
Their, there, they’re
Who, which, that