Sunday, June 26, 2011

Show and Tell---Chekhov

In the Dublin writing class, I'm providing exercises for practice in showing, not telling. I found this quote by Anton Chekhov:

"Don't tell me the moon is shining: show me the glint of light on broken glass."

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Nix Adverbs

Although my WOW flash contest entry made it to the final 100 out of 300 submissions, it did not win. I received the critique I had ordered from them. A couple comma errors were indicated and an adverb. I thought I could leave one little adverb in a story of 710 words...big mistake.

In the critique, the editor said, “Fantastic job of not overloading this piece with adverbs.” Yet, she marked sadly as an error, which contributed to lowering my score.

If you are tempted to leave a couple of adverbs, or even one, in a contest entry or any submission for publication, remember my little sadly and ruthlessly delete. (Adverb alert!)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

That and Which

Here is a review of when to use which and when to use that:

That is used without a comma when the clause that follows is essential information. For example: The book that he wrote was burned by the angry group.

Which is used, with a comma, when the following clause is incidental (filler) information. For example: The book, which was bound in leather, stayed on the shelf unread.

Key words are essential and incidental when you determine the uses of that and which.