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acAdvanced Composition 
Vigorous Verbs: Increase your Writing Power

April 28, 2005

 When writing, choose the specific verb more often than the general. For example: The mother strolls down the path with her baby. 

General versus Specific Verbs:

Here is a general verb in a sentence: "The wind blew through the trees.”

Here is a specific verb in the same sentence: "The wind roared through the trees.”

How is the second sentence different? Why is it more powerful?

Here is a general verb in a sentence: The kindergarten class walked to the park.

Here is a specific verb in the same sentence: The kindergarten class skipped to the park.

How are the children in the second sentence feeling today? How do you know?

Writing Assignment:

Use four specific verbs—adore, stroll, chat, and gaze. Write a short paragraph about a walk in the park on a sunny day. Use one or two more specific verbs in your composition. Remember to use all five senses to help your composition to be more descriptive.


     Take your rough draft home with you today.

     Make at least five corrections to the draft and recopy the paragraph.

     Hand in your original and your revised copy to class next week.


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