⚡ Use Active Verbs

And specific nouns.

Today’s Writing Tip:

Use active verbs and specific nouns to describe things in your story.

Explanation:

Verbs are useful for more than just motion. They can also be used to describe the placements of static objects. Active verbs make the description more specific and paints a better picture. For example:

  • Passive description: “The cat was on my bed.”

  • Active description: “The cat sprawled on my bed.”

Similarly, using specific nouns will also help you paint better pictures. A vague noun can mean many things. A specific noun conjures a specific image. For example:

  • Vague noun: “At the center of the table, there was a large wooden bowl filled with fruits.”

  • Specific noun: “At the center of the table, a dough bowl was overflowing with oranges and apples.”

Also notice how “overflowing with oranges and apples” is a much better descriptor than “filled with fruits”.

Want more in-depth writing advice? Join my 12-Day Prose Masterclass today!

First, you will learn the 6 building blocks of prose:

  • Show, Don’t Tell: How to paint a picture with your words.

  • Description: How to describe scenes and characters.

  • Narration: How to control story dynamics and manipulate time.

  • Dialogue: How to write realistic and interesting speech.

  • Action and Behavior: How to create movement in your story.

  • Rhythm and Flow: How to make your writing flow smoothly.

Then, to put what you learned to practice, I’ll teach you:

  • World, Setting, Tone: How to write believable settings.

  • The Narrative Question: How to keep readers interested with hooks.

  • Pacing: How to control the speed of your story.

  • Inner Journey: How to share your characters' thoughts and feelings.

  • Setup and Payoff: How to deliver satisfying endings.

  • Story Patterns: How to recognize and use common plot patterns.

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