How to Break Writing Rules Right: “Don’t Use Adverbs, Adjectives”

. . .  When it comes to breaking the rules for adverbs and adjectives, you’ve got at least five great reasons to do it. 1) The verb or noun you need doesn’t exist in your language. 2) To control pacing. 3) To communicate interesting or unusual situations. 4) To create a specific tone or character voice. 5) The adverb or adjective is doing double duty.

What’s the Rule?

The Rule:

Don’t use adverbs because it weakens your writing. Use adjectives rarely for the same reason.

Why it’s a Rule

Take a look at these sentences:

She laughed happily.

The yellow sun was beating down on us.

Jasper pulled hard on the doorknob.

“Get your butt to your room right now!” Cynthia said, angrily.

I quickly put on my beautiful, silky pointe shoes and with my thin, spindly, little fingers tie the ribbons around my bony ankle, so they fit constrictingly. I walk awkwardly to the dark, dim wings of the huge stage. I think about one fun evening at a local theater where I lovingly watched a ballerina dance gracefully across the stage and into the soft air. Happy and thrilled, everyone there smiled with joyful eyes. See More . . . 


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