Food For Thought (a.k.a. A Writely Kick in The Rear)

Adverbs are the devil; make sure there are none in your manuscript.

Agree or disagree?

Published by Dan Alatorre AUTHOR

USA Today bestselling author Dan Alatorre has 50+ titles published in more than 120 countries and over a dozen languages.

20 thoughts on “Food For Thought (a.k.a. A Writely Kick in The Rear)

  1. Agree mostly, but there are times … there are times when a dogged nose must be fixated exactly on that scent …

    Using too many, using them to ‘tell’ in moments the writer wants the reader to feel and not be explained to, these are the times to rip them out by the throat. With sound effects.
    It’s not even a matter of all things in moderation; it’s where they go and why.

    It’s an ugly building (tell), shaped like a doughnut that’s been eaten by ants and a rabid dog, bits of shiny stuff dangling off the edges and sharp indents that might be doorways. It should look like an institution. It should look like a sanitarium, not a crazy-house ride at a run-down fair. The two men who held her imprisoned in the white jacket shoved her down the shell-white path towards the monstrosity that would imprison her soul.

    How’s that?

    Liked by 3 people

  2. King said you should always use your first choice word, not some inferior second choice you think up to replace the first one because you think the first one isn’t snazzy enough. I’m paraphrasing, but that’s the gist.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Disagree… Just because Hemingway didn’t like them, doesn’t mean they don’t belong — ever! Look at what Dick Francis achieved with them! (And how did Hemingway end?)
    I agree adverbs shouldn’t be over-used, via “cagedunn”. But Francis made them fun and useful, so they can have a place and time. They are part of a writer’s tool kit.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Like all things in life, Dan, adverts should be used sparingly and only when they add value. It is good to take note of overuse of such parts of speech though, makes you more aware of this mistake.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ADD VALUE. Yes! That’s it exactly.

      You always do such a brilliant job of summing things up.

      For example, an adverb can add value when it come in the middle of something that needs fewer words or when it can precisely make the statement that needs to be made.

      When it adds value. Terrific. I wish I’d said that. I may steal that, in fact.

      Liked by 1 person

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