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Packing Heat 097 - Order in the Court

Phrase Order Matters

 
Here's a real sentence I typed in a project this morning:
Bob stuffed a few bites of sandwich into his mouth and started in on removing the TV's back panel while he chewed it.
 
Yes, we all know what it means, but because of the way in which I've ordered the phrases, the sentence could read that Bob is chewing on the TV. Check the order of your phrases for logic.
 
Phrase order also affects impact:
 
Yes: Because I think so highly of you, and because I know you're better than I am, I'm going to have to kill you.
No: I'm going to have to kill you, because I think so highly of you, and because I know you're better than I am.
 
The last part of the sentence has the biggest impact. If you have a "pow" concept in your sentence, don't take the edge off it buy burying the exciting part somewhere in the middle.
 
Phrases can also present chronology problems.
Crossing the room, she opened the window on the far wall, leaned out, and shouted, "Here I am!"
 
How did she open the window on the far wall WHILE she was crossing the room? I see this kind of thing all the time, in the name of "varying my sentence structure." Bah.
 

The 20% Rule

This was an idea I read about at Lifehacker.com where employees at Google spent 20% of their work time developing a project of personal interest, a sort of play-at-work. I wonder if applying something similar to writing can help a writer stay out of a rut? Now that writing is my job-job, I'm going to try to implement something like this, a side project that's quite different from what I usually do.

Your Assignment


Think of something quite different from your "norm" that you could do as a side project to re-energize.

Hear the show, about 18 minutes- http://packingheat.net/2010/03/21/packing-heat-097-order-in-the-court.aspx
 

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