Adverbs and Adjectives–A Writer’s Best Friends

adjective

From Dictionary.com:

ADJECTIVE

noun

Grammar. any member of a class of words that modify nouns and pronouns, primarily by describing a particular quality of the word they are modifying, as wise in a wise grandmother, or perfect in a perfect score, or handsome in He is extremely handsome. Other terms, as numbers (one cup; twelve months), certain demonstrative pronouns (this magazine; those questions), and terms that impose limits (each person; no mercy) can also function adjectivally, as can some nouns that are found chiefly in fixed phrases where they immediately precede the noun they modify, as bottle in bottle cap and bus in bus station.
Yes, I am blogging about WRITING! So that’s gotta be a positive sign, right?
Descriptive words–adverbs and adjectives, really make or break it for a reader. They are what paint the mental images in a reader’s mind;
Dry, crusty bread
A smooth, glassy lake
Quick, sporadic movements
Deep, lung-filling breaths
If the above examples evoked even a brief response, I’ve served my purpose.
That said, I remember from writing courses I took (back in the late 20th century, needless to say!), a writer doesn’t want to use too many descriptive words, especially if they are working under a word count limit.
Instead of:
The drafty, run-down old outbuilding
Say:
The dilapidated  barn
I love descriptive words and remember having a little difficulty with this rule when an English teacher first turned my attention to this “rule.” But I do get her point.
But again I ask, did one of the above descriptions evoke more of a mental image than the other for you?  “Don’t use five words if two or three will do,” I was told.
Maybe it’s just personal preference, but when I am (once again) in full writing mode, you can bet I’ll be pulling out every vivid, descriptive, expressive word I can call forth!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s