To be or NOT to be

Is your writing bogged down by the verb "to be"? Words like "are," "were," "is," and other derivatives of "to be" don't contribute to moving your story forward. In fact, they slow it down or stop it dead.. The passive voice makes your story weak.

As writers we often suffer from To be-itis. This is no surprise, and it parallels the same disease that stops us dead in our tracks as we navigate our lives. The wanna-bes, the shoulds and should nots, the if only I could be's...all contribute to our life stuckness as well as the stuckness in our writing.

Consider this simple example: "They were at the party, dancing." Now, let's rephrase that to: "They danced at the party." Which sentence is more readable? Which one makes you feel like you also attended the party?


What "to-be's" do you use in your life and in your writing? Look closely and you'll find that the best way to move your story along is to use active verbs, the same action verbs that provide the fodder for a life well-lived.

Comments

  1. Something to think about! Only,I'm having trouble applying it to my comment. lol I started and erased several times. :) Enjoyed it!

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  2. LOL! Thanks for reading and for commenting...funny how that happens, isn't it? You know, I did the same thing when writing up this post! :-))

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