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  1. zawmbee
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    zawmbee New Member

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    How to add depth. How do be coherent and how to maintain fluidity.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by zawmbee, May 16, 2011.

    Hello Gents, I've come to this to forum in search of a little advice to better my writing. I love writing. I hope to pursue a future involving literary showcasing, and I hope to be an article writer. But, I'm faced with one problem and one problem only, I don't think I know a lot -- well, as much as I need to. The biggest problems I'm faced with at the moment is sentence flow and grammar problems. I don't know how to use grammar and punctuation properly. I know the rules and everything but I find it hard putting what I know into practice. I've read so much and believe I have the theory down, but other than that, I find it difficult to use more advanced punctuation. Can someone tell me, in their own words, how to use semi-colons, colons, commas (properly) and parenthesis? It would mean the world to me! I'm almost positive that the use of these punctuation vary from genre i.e. in article writing the use of parenthesis will be greater than commas (which are used more for formality).

    My next query is how I add a sense of flow into my writing? I always have the same problem no matter what I write. I start to, what I call "wording stutter", which is pretty much when I fuse run-on sentences with bad grammar. And I end up with the most ridiculously long, and babbling sentences. It's embarrassing. How do I overcome using too many words in a sentence, but I want to say a lot? I know this has to do with punctuation, but I'm poor at that. This also applies for a coherent sentence.

    Last and final query, I was watching the Twilight Zone episodes back-to-back (fantastic series) and I was watching the promo and I heard Rob Serling -- on behalf of writers everywhere -- that it was easier to create a scene using text appose to in film form. I didn't believe this. Does anyone have any tips to better my writing and create an added depth? I could never imagine being able to play out a scene more efficiently with writing compared to using moving pictures.

    If you've got this far, much thanks. I appreciate your dedication to helping a young writer in need. I just want to better my writing. All tips and tricks will be appreciated and replied to. I will be posting some of my work momentarily. Thank you, lads.

    Also, how was this post? Was it written well (taking to account punctuation and grammar).
     
  2. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I believe it was Benjamin Franklin who once said, "If you give a starving man a fish, you solve his problem for a day; if you teach him how to fish, you solve it for a lifetime." In that spirit, I am not going to tell you how to use commas. I'm going to make some suggestions for becoming a better writer.

    First of all, any book on grammar will tell you all you need to know not only about punctuation, but sentence structure, length and usage. The basic rules of grammar do NOT vary from genre to genre. A split infinitive is a split infinitive, whether it's used in sci-fi, chick lit or historical fiction. Get yourself a grammar text and also get yourself a copy of "The Elements of Style" by Strunk and White, which addresses other aspects of writing. You may also want to spring for a copy of Fowler's Modern English Usage.

    Secondly, you need to read more. You need to read a lot. This will not by itself make you a good writer, but it will show you what good writing is. Read the kind of material you would like to be able to write. I'm not sure what "literary showcasing" is. Do you mean writing literary fiction? Step one: say what you mean, not what you think will impress people. Write plain fiction (if fiction's your thing), lay out your story and make it interesting. Worry about literary devices later. If your story isn't good, your characters aren't engaging, then no one will care about the showcasing.

    Thirdly, this forum is an excellent source of assistance for writers, with some folks who clearly know what they are doing. Try looking around before posting questions, because yours may very well have been already answered. Certain questions seem to pop up incessantly - especially questions involving point of view (POV) and tense. They become tiresome after a while, so please look before you post.

    Finally, I love a breezy salutation as much as the next person, but a lot of the people on this forum, including some who give the best advice, are women. So I suggest dropping "Gents" as a salutation. Just a thought.

    Good luck.
     
  3. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Oh, and I would agree with Rod Serling, who knew a thing or two about good writing. It is definitely easier to create a scene using text, in which the writer only has to be concerned with his words and how they will be understood, as opposed to film form, in which the writer must make certain that a director will understand what (s)he intended and successfully convey that to actors and actresses.
     
  4. JimFlagg
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    JimFlagg Contributing Member

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    "Teach a man to take a fish is not equal to teach a man how to fish."

    or

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

    One of the original 39 Chinese Proverbs. No one knows who originally quoted it.

    I day dream the sequence. I imagine my self in the scene and what I would see. The best advice is to read how others do it it and try to follow their example. Not sure if that helps.
     
  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Missing the point. :rolleyes:
     
  6. Chachi Bobinks
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    Chachi Bobinks Senior Member

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    Zawmbee, if you are struggling with grammar and how to use it in a fashion that will not lead to public flogging, there are a lot of awesome websites out there that can give you helpful hints.

    I know it can be really intimidating to put your work out there when you've got this kind of hurdle to leap. I have the same problem. The women and men on this forum are rockstars at grammar, too, which can put the stress on even more. (See, you guys are just too good.) The only option you've got is to study your bottom off!

    I really hope that helps. Best of luck and I look forward to seeing your work!
     

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