Writing Exercise: Action vs. Linking

Posted October 2, 2012 by twoamwriter 1 Comment

This month’s Writing Prompt is more of an Exercise, and it’s inspired by this blog post on Tinderbox, which is a homeschool blog:

Assignment: Write two short descriptions of the same thing. One description should use only action verbs. The other should use only linking verbs.

The blog post talks about active vs. linking verbs, which is another way of saying show, don’t tell — something every writer has heard but is not always easy to do.  Be sure to read the full post…there’s even an example using Luna Lovegood.  Re-writing it in my own words would just be re-inventing the wheel, and I don’t think I could do the topic justice like this blog post did.

So now, with a fresh awareness of action vs. linking verbs, go through your latest scene, chapter, or story and see what you can show instead of tell by describing with action verbs instead of linking verbs.

How was your writing improved by this exercise? Did you learn something new about a character or setting or object in your story? Did the reader learn something new that you thought  was on the page, but maybe was just in your head?

What do you think about our writing prompts feature? Do you have any suggestions for future topics? Do you prefer open-ended prompts or specific ones?

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