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Improve your writing skills

Improve your writing skills

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Improve your writing skills

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  1. Improveyourwritingskills • Click on the player to listen to someadvice.

  2. STRUCTURING SENTENCESUsing a variety of sentence openers to make your writing more interesting.

  3. One of the most common ways to start a sentence is to begin with the thing being described as subject(first word). So we start with ‘the...’, or ‘she/he/it...’, followed by the verb (action). Eg: The lanky, unkempt fellow slinked down the canal path... Check out any vocabulary you don’t understand

  4. This way of structuring the sentence can get a bit boring... The car was very fast. It (the car again) drove around the corner before spinning out. Its passenger was saved by the seatbelt as the car’s brakes failed and it rolled onto the pavement. The passenger managed to force open the door and crawl onto a grassy strip out of danger.

  5. Let’s return to ourexamplebefore : Didyou check out the vocabulary ? The lanky, unkempt fellow slinked down the canal path... Lanky and unkempt = adjectives Fellow = young man To slink = to walk unobtrusively (do you know the character SLINKY in Toy Story ?)

  6. Slinky This helps to giveyou an idea of the movement.

  7. Use an ‘ly’ (adverb) opening word: Unsteadily, the lanky, unkempt fellow slinked down the alleyway...

  8. Otherexamples of adverbs Listen to the recording and writeyourself a list :

  9. Open your sentence with words indicating location: Along the canal towpath , the lanky, unkempt fellow ambled slowly...

  10. Start the sentence using a word ending in “ing”: Ambling along the canal tow path, the intoxicated thief spied his victim...

  11. ‘Drop in’ clause or ‘comma sandwich’: The inebriated man, who was lanky and unkempt, stumbled along the canal towpath...

  12. Use a variety of sentence lengths, from short and punchy, to more complex: She froze. They waited. He fell to the ground, with a thud.

  13. Use ‘although’, or ‘despite’ as a sentence starter: Although he was intoxicated, the thief managed to escape through the deserted canal towpaths which criss-crossed the city... Despite his intoxicated state, the thief was able to escape through the deserted canal towpaths...

  14. Open using a word ending in –ed: Terrified, the girl darted out of the path of her pursuer...

  15. Use a simile: The mugger approached his target like a stealthy cat stalking its prey... The pickpocket moved as smoothly as a sea snake glides through the water...

  16. Whatis a simile ? Listen for definition of a simile and someexamplesyoucan use in yourwriting : Similesactivity

  17. Use alliteration: Ragged, rough and rank, the criminal closed in on the student walking alone down the alley...

  18. Use sentences of three, for impact: She staggered home, yanked off her painful shoes, and made a cup of tea...

  19. Speech, followed by action with an ‘ing’ clause: “Help me!”, he screamed, tripping on the slimy cobblestones..

  20. Use time: including time of day, season, and temperature: At 6pm on an icy winter evening...

  21. Start with a name: Detective Marshall didn’t believe a word of the devious criminal’s story...

  22. Start with a question: “Are you sure its safe to walk by the canal tonight?” asked his anxious girlfriend.

  23. Start with a wish: Why couldn’t he be lying safely wrapped in his fluffy duvet instead of here bleeding into the slush and snow...

  24. Describe the scene: On the edge of town stood a derelict building that no one ever dared enter...

  25. Introduce a new character: Her name was Morwennaand everyone realised there was something mysterious about her right from the beginning...

  26. Begin a sentence with dramatic action: The gun fired as the bank robber leapt through the window in escape...

  27. Conclusions