Tired of people telling you your writing is awkward?

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I’m a member of three critique groups, so I spend a lot of time reading other writers’ work.  I often find awkward sentences that violate the rules of parallel structure.

Why is it important? 

Parallel structure makes your sentences graceful. People may not be able to tell you why your writing is awkward, but they feel it. You may not know how to describe what is wrong with your dance partner’s tango steps, but you feel it when they* step on your foot.

Continue reading “Tired of people telling you your writing is awkward?”

Grammar Tidbit

Photo Credit Used under a CC license
Photo Credit Used under a CC license

I can never remember the grammar rule for “lie/lay.” The other day a writer I know said something to me about this; I think the distinction has fully stuck to my slick and porous brain. She said:

“We LAY objects down. But you, as a subject, must LIE down.”

Ever the smart-ass, I said “what about the prayer, ‘now I lay me down to sleep . . .'”.

But she was ready for me. She said “In that sentence ‘me’ is the object, ‘I’ is the subject.”

And the stars twinkled in the sky, and a million angels high-fived me. I think this has finally soaked in.

Also, fuck you, Mrs. Valensky (my eighth grade English teacher). Why couldn’t you make it so simple?!