Hi, I'm Ray Evans. I'm a certified copyeditor and proofreader.
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Hey, folks! Welcome to another riveting episode of, "How to Make Your Fiction Sing like Pavarotti on
Red Bull.*" Today, we're diving headfirst into the labyrinthine world of adjectives and adverbs.
Strap in, because it's about to get as wild as Keith Richards at an all-you-can-eat buffet of descriptive
1) Select the crème de la crème of adjectives and adverbs
Now, I don't want to go off on a rant here, but if you're going to use adjectives and adverbs, make sure
you're choosing the Rolls-Royce of words, not the jalopy. Do some linguistic window-shopping, and
pick the words that give your prose that million-dollar gleam. Think about it like you're dressing for
the Oscars; you wouldn't show up in a burlap sack, right? Investing a thesaurus can really help out
2) Timing is everything
Listen, gang, adjectives and adverbs are like the seasoning of your narrative soufflé. Too little, and it's
as bland as an accountant's daydream. Too much, and it's like a Tabasco-soaked habanero that sets
your readers' taste buds aflame. Use those words judiciously, so the reader can savor the subtlety of
your literary culinary masterpiece.
3) Show, Don't Tell
Remember, amigos, writing is like a grand illusion, and you're the Houdini of the printed word. Don't
spoon-feed your readers a thesaurus-worth of adjectives and adverbs. Instead, slip them into your
narrative like a card shark with a deck full of aces. Show your reader the humid, verdant jungle, don't
just tell them it's "really, really green."
4) Throttle back on repetition
The English language is a beautiful, sprawling tapestry, not some cookie-cutter assembly line.
Avoid overusing the same adjectives and adverbs as if they were the only two spices in your pantry.
Get creative, like a kid in a candy store with a pocket full of quarters, and explore the linguistic
smorgasbord that's at your fingertips.
5) Beware of "ly" adverbs
Finally, let's address the elephant in the room – the infamous "ly" adverbs. Sure, they can be enticing,
like a siren's song luring your prose onto the rocks of mediocrity. But don't be fooled. Use them
sparingly, if at all, or you'll find yourself stuck in a literary quagmire so deep you'll need a crane to pull
6) And that's all folks!
So there you have it, my literati friends – a five-step plan to make your writing sparkle like the sun on
the Côte d'Azur. Use your adjectives and adverbs wisely, and your readers will be as captivated as a
kitten with a laser pointer. Now, go forth and conquer the world of fiction with your newfound
descriptive prowess. And that's the way it is!